For their equestrian-themed wedding, Lauren Long and Brian Yengoyan enlist chef Traci Des Jardins for a world-class menu.
“I have been riding and showing hunter/jumper horses for over 26 years, so the old barn at Santa Lucia Preserve in Carmel was the perfect place to celebrate,” says Lauren Long of the venue she and Brian Yengoyan chose for their wedding. Engaged in 2014 (Lauren, a fitness instructor, and Brian, a real estate developer, first connected at a Fourth of July party two years earlier), the Fresno natives tasked wedding planner Laurie Arons with finding a location suited to an affair that would be “magical, unique and full of intrigue,” says the bride.
“The overall vision built upon the pastoral beauty of the preserve and Lauren’s passion for all things equestrian,” says Arons, who incorporated the theme in such details as vintage trophies planted amid the flowers and linen napkins with custom horseshoe embroidery. Beyond that, the focus was on the food. The couple turned to award-winning San Francisco chef Traci Des Jardins of Jardinière fame, who brought her signature level of Cal-French sophistication and focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients to the evening’s menu. Festivities kicked off with an alfresco raw bar and caviar station (180 guests consumed almost 5 pounds of said delicacy), followed by a seated dinner of gnocchi with lobster and filet mignon under the eaves of the barn. In keeping with the theme, Lauren paid homage to her beloved steed, Magnolia, with a sugar magnolia blossom-adorned cake by Perfect Endings. After dinner, the party continued in the cigar lounge and at the specialty Scotch bar, a nod to Brian’s favorite tipple. But the indulgences didn’t end there. As husband and wife, the couple have another meal to look forward to. “After our wedding, Brian and I made it a point to go to Traci’s restaurants,” says Lauren. “We have big plans to get together with Laurie for dinner at Jardinière soon.” tracidesjardins.com.
Written and edited by LESLEY McKENZIE.
PHOTOS: Joel Serrato.