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Sitting down to lunch with Andrea and Corie Maue (pronounced like Maui) is what I consider a breath of fresh air.
Temecula Grapevine had the pleasure of spending an afternoon, lunching at La Bella Vita, a favorite for these Temecula and Murrieta Foodies. La Bella Vita was the perfect place to dish on all things Reality Rally in this, their third venture of raising money for Michelle’s Place and more.
Corie Maue, a local favorite wine and restaurant journalist sipped a local Chardonnay, expertly ordering La Bella Vita’s Di Mare seafood salad. Andrea sampled, and enjoyed her Italian red wine, opting for prosciutto panini. Typical for these two, opposites on the outside, but with matching hearts for helping others.
Corie and Andrea are flip-sides of a coin who compliment each other completely–with Corie’s pixie style and Andrea’s mane of brunette curls. Both love food, what it takes to prepare it, and making sure those they serve delight in every taste. Both are mothers of delightful children (Corie with a son, to Andrea’s daughter). Sisters-in-law, and most importantly, friends, Andrea Maue was first to launch into how they met Gillian Larson, Reality Rally’s founder and the heart of the event.
“Gillian found us right after our episode of Cupcake Wars aired,” stated Andrea. “That was three years ago, and it’s been a whirlwind ever since.”
Corie nodded in agreement. “Gillian is a force of nature. We’re endlessly amazed at all she accomplishes. This year proves to be the biggest Reality Rally yet.” Andrea quickly turned the conversation to what Reality Rally is all about. Raising money for Michelle’s Place, the goal to provide mammograms for women in need. “If we can help a woman in some small way, it’s worth it.”
Talking with these two is like following a roller coaster. From the growth of Reality Rally from its inception in 2011, to AJ’s Bakery and Catering Company, Cupcake Wars victory, to creating delicacies to serve up at Reality Rally’s upcoming Casino Night at Wilson Creek, which they are donating toward the event.
Regarding Cupcake Wars, and the award winning episode where Andrea and Corie whipped up Soccer themed cupcakes and culminated with an LA Galaxy game, “We had so much fun.” Stated Corie. The two went on to be civilian judges for Supermarket Superstars.
Now, in their third year of Reality Rally, Temecula Grapevine asked what they are looking most. A sly shared look, and Andrea breaks into laughter. “Oh, the Chef’s challenge on Sunday, of course!”
Andrea refers to the brand new Food Network “Chopped” inspired reality event, taking place at Pala Mesa Resort the morning of Sunday, April 13. “This is the first time Reality Rally has tackled any event of this magnitude,” stated Andrea.
Of the event, 13 Chef and Food Network participants will take place in a 4 tier cook-off, with mystery ingredient baskets, and Chopped style “sudden death” judging. “I love the race through Temecula,” stated Andrea, “But the Celebrity Cook off is what I’m really looking forward to.” Corie, a self-proclaimed “Non-Chef” Food Network reality star, is looking forward to actual race day itself.
“I love all of the different events through Old Town Temecula,” Corie stated. “The check points, riding the bull at Stampede, acting on stage at the Old Town Temecula Community Theater, even the gun-fighting with the Old Town Gunfighters!”
When lunch appeared, attention was diverted to the La Bella Vita platters of prosciutto paninis, and expertly plated seafood salads, prepared by the chef of La Bella Vita. Invariably, discussion evolved around food, flavors of the meal before turning back to the events–this time, surrounding the autograph signing which is a fan favorite.
“They love putting us next to the hotties,” Andrea laughed. “Seriously, the stars that gather to sign autographs to raise money for Michelle’s Place are fantastic. Everyone gets into the excitement of the day.”
Corie agreed. “We love the kids from the Temecula Radio Station. They always ask us amazing questions. And it’s great to be able to be blessings to others, rather than just flaunt the reality fame. What Reality Rally does for Michelle’s Place is fantastic. Raising money for women to have advanced screenings, it’s humbling to take part in something like this, year after year.”
Andrea agreed, as conversation turned to the other mainstays of Reality Rally, including the Celebrity Reception and Casino Night Fundraiser, on Friday, April 11. “The meet and greet is one of the best nights of the whole weekend.”
Andrea, who owns A J’s Bakery and Catering in Temecula/Murrieta, regularly donates desserts to the Casino Night, held this year at Wilson Creek Winery.
“This year, I believe we’ll be making Cheesecake Pops, and some other treats that are ridiculously delicious. It’s an honor to be able to donate toward Reality Rally, as well as to raise funds for Michelle’s Place. Definitely a high point of our year.”
Donate to Andrea and Corie’s Reality Rally Team: