Last weekend, I was invited to a garden and home tour of P. Allen Smith’s estate at Moss Mountain Farm. While most people who read this blog are from Arkansas, where P. Allen Smith is (nearly) a household name, those of you who are unaware of this “Martha Stewart of the South” should read this New York Times article, that even references the tour/dinner party I attended.
Anyway, knowing what I know about P. Allen, I expected a beautiful old house and garden. I did not expect to walk into my dream house. Seriously. Dream. House. I loved every bedroom, every bathroom, every detail. I loved the gardens, the barn, the table settings for the dinner party. I was taking photos for the magazine, so (thank god) I had my camera with me and was able to snap a few to share with you here.
This outdoor bedroom was a favorite of mine. The day I visited, it was about 105 degrees outside, but in Arkansas, it would be comfortable to sleep in this porch room from April through October. And I probably would.
And no, I would not hesitate to take a bath in the copper tub in the porch room.
One of my favorite guest bedrooms. (Excuse the shoddy photography – I was trying to be stealthy.)
Loved the desk with vintage fan and TERRARIUMS! So presh.
This room was on the third floor and acts as a “dormitory” for Allen’s nieces and nephews. The other side of the stairwell contained four small children’s beds, but I particularly loved this room. It’s young without being theme-y and would transition well through teenage years into young adulthood.
Moving down to the basement, I loved the faux-tree limb bed frame and framed botany prints on the wall.
Dream kitchen! Oh the damage I could do…
Off the living room and kitchen on the first floor, another screened-in room included comfy sofas and an adorably blue outdoor dining table.
Allen’s studio off the main house.
An amazing set up for the dinner party. A huge tent outside the barn with hanging baskets, linen table clothes and watermelon and tomato centerpieces.
The four-course meal included tomato and watermelon gazpacho, heirloom tomatoes with buffalo mozzarella (so good!), farm-raised chicken and vegetables and a chocolate and peanut butter mousse for dessert. I’m honestly not a huge fan of tomatoes throughout the year, but an Arkansas home-grown tomato in the summertime can’t be beat. The tomato/mozzarella course was definitely a favorite, but the gazpacho was also amazing.
My only complaint about the entire evening (other than the sweltering heat) was that it once it got dark, the waitstaff had a difficult time seeing who had been served which course. This meant lots of confusion and waiting around while everyone around you ate. The entire meal took around four hours, which, in my personal opinion, is a long time to make small talk with the strangers sitting around you. It also meant lots and lots and LOTS of flies congregating on the pans of cornbread. But other than that, I had a fantastic time.
That would be me, P. and my co-worker Jillian. The event was a benefit for the Oxford American, so I really appreciated the invitation. Definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity (though an invitation for the fall would be greatly appreciated!).