Get Your Drink On…..

One of the trickiest parts of planning a party is knowing how much glassware to have on hand. First, consider simplifying your drinks menu. If the only wine you’re offering is champagne, the only wine glasses you need are flutes. A highball glass, in a pinch, can hold beer or water. You should offer wine glasses for wines, juice and water; straight-sided highballs for tall drinks; tumblers for spirits and juices; and martini glasses. In terms of quantity, be ready with approximately twice as many glasses as you’ll have guests. A cocktail party usually requires 3 glasses per person.

Don’t worry if all your glasses don’t match. Older glassware with some character to it is a great conversation starter. Keep an eye out on ebay and at thrift stores for good deals on vintage glassware.

 

Liquor

Another challenge in party planning is figuring out how much alcohol to have on hand. Choosing a cocktail menu can help. You can print up a menu of a few signature drinks in advance, and buy your alcohol  according to what you need for each drink.

As for the number of bottles you’ll need to buy, the general rule of thumb is to expect each guest to consume 1 or 2 drinks per hour. So multiply the number of guests by the number of hours your party will last, and then multiply that by 2, just to be safe. If you’re having 20 guests for two hours, you’ll need 80 drinks. Keep in mind, this number includes cocktails as well as wine, beer, and non-alcoholic beverages.

A standard bottle of wine or liquor holds 750 milliliters, or a little over 25 ounces. If you’re pre-batching a pitcher (or carafe or bottle) of margaritas that uses 8.5 oz. of tequila, you’ll get almost 3 pitchers of margaritas from one bottle of tequila.

 

Essential Liquor and Mixers

Even if you’re serving one or two cocktails that you’ve mixed up in advance, you should plan on having these spirits on hand:

  • Whiskey
  • Gin
  • Vodka
  • Tequila
  • Rum
  • Brandy

Guests  come to the  party with varying tastes: some will be in love with your cocktails, whereas others will prefer scotch on the rocks or a gin and tonic. Be prepared by stocking the following mixers:

  • Tonic water
  • Seltzer or club soda
  • Cola
  • Lemonade or lemon-lime soda
  • Ginger ale or ginger beer

Be sure to have lots of lemons and limes on hand!

Ice

Bagged ice is perfect for keeping a bunch of bottles and cans of beverages chilled in a cooler or tub. Send someone out the morning of your party to buy ice—a bag or two per cooler or tub. If you have ample freezer space to store extra bags, then go ahead and have a few extras on hand.

Break up the ice a bit and pour it into the cooler or tub. Fill with water and add your bottles. Beverages chill faster and colder in ice water than they do in ice alone, but you’ll have to replenish the ice as it melts so the drinks don’t warm up too much.

Cubed Ice

Consider investing in silicon ice-cube trays for easy removal,  Large, heavy cubes of ice melt more slowly in rocks drinks than smaller cubes do, and they look more festive in a glass. If you have enough freezer space, you can start freezing ice several days in advance and store it until the day of the party.

Molded Ice
 Is great for chilling bowls of punch, molded ice also gives you a canvas for a bit of creativity.
Here’s what you do:

Fill a large bowl, or several small bowls, with a mix of water and fruit juice. If you’re making a punch recipe that calls for pineapple or lime juice, for example, you can add pineapple or lime juice to the ice. Add slices of lime or chunks of pineapple to the bowl as well and freeze, at least overnight.

As the ice melts, it will “water” your punch down with juicy flavor instead of just water. You can even add edible flowers (or other edible garnishes) to the ice, if they’re in season. When you’re ready to serve the punch, simply dip the ice bowl in warm water until the ice loosens from the bowl.

 

 

Honey… Bee Mine

For a sweet event, a honey bee theme is perfect. Filled with bright colors of yellow and flavors of delectable honey, this is a unique way to celebrate and most certainly a memorable one.

 

There are so many plays on words you can incorporate into a honey bee themed occasion, such as “Meant to Bee” or “Bride to Bee”, so let your creativity fly

Obviously you’ll want to bring honey flavors into as much as your party food as you can, so opt for honey cocktails with actual honeycombs as garnishes, cakepops in the shape of honeycombs themselves, detailed sugar cookies in the shapes of honey bees and even honey flavored hard candies in containers that look like bee keeper boxes. The possibilities  are endless with this sweet theme!

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Designing The Perfect Summer Party

 

Summertime has been the time for relaxation and fun for many years. We grow up enjoying summers away from school as a time to enjoy not having the responsibility of school work. No wonder there are still so many adults who look forward to this time of the year and summer entertaining.

Here are some of our ideas for creative summer entertaining.  

Turn a weeknight BBQ dinner into something special.  Tie a sheet up in a tree and invest in a portable projector.  Hooked up to your laptop, you can host your own alfresco outdoor movie night. Turn your backyard into your own private theatre. Setup the hammock, and arrange outdoor furniture.  Throw pillows and blankets on the grass.  Serve some  movie theatre cuisine with a twist ! Think  truffled  popcorn, sliders, and homemade sodas.

 

 

 

Picnic blankets don’t need to be red and white gingham.  Why not bring your oriental outside and patchwork them on the lawn? As long as the weather is fair – bring indoor furniture outside for a special alfresco experience – dining tables, chairs, lamps – etc.  Alternatively, bring the outdoors in by repurposing gardening tools as serving pieces for a summer salad station.  We love using gardening trowels as spoons for an outdoorsylook and feel.  And it goes without saying that the spoils of summer – flowers, foliage, fruits, and vegetables – are a reminder of the season.

 

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Ice Cream has so many flavors and new artisanal vendors these days! Adults and children alike will enjoy a good old-fashioned Ice Cream Social.  Get creative with boozy ice cream creations for grownups like Bourbon Vanilla Milkshakes. Get out your soda glasses!

Keep it simple, but undeniably elegant by incorporating antique elements into your table decor. Crystal glasses and aged golden candle holders sitting on top of a bare picnic table combine to present a rustic, yet graceful setting. Building on this idea, use flowers to add pops of color to your party. Lights…..Use lots of lights!

 

 

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Beers, sodas, and wines don’t need to be chilled in ugly coolers.  Presentation is obviously everything – think about what you might have in your home that could be repurposed as coolers. Wheelbarrows, inflatable kiddie pools, bathtubs, canoes, and rowboats are all great coolers when filled with ice and bottled drinks!

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