I once threw a potluck where five people brought green salad and two brought cookies. Period. Even with the revelers manage to cover the courses, the flavors are a trip around the world: Indian curry, Greek salad, Tex-Mex enchiladas, Swedish meatballs, Mama's Lasagna. The unifying theme, if any, is diversity. So what about that wine? What can you take to a potluck that'll taste good amid the noise of flavors, textures, and styles?
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I would say that everyone loves a holiday party, but that's just not true; many of them suck. Here are a few tips that should help ensure that yours is of the non-sucky variety.
Spring is starting to turn to summer across most of the United States, and with summer comes an upswing in cocktail parties. Having co-hosted more than a few parties myself, I have a few tips to offer that will help you host a successful bash.
For those looking to offer an end-of-meal cuppa as wonderful as their holiday feast itself, we're back to offer our seasonal primer on how to serve coffee practically and excellently for a group. NB: You can cheat a little. Your guests will be in a cranberry stupor anyway.
Today's question: How should a non beer drinker stock a beer fridge? Vodka and I are close friends, but I've never cottoned on to beer. So what are some go-to types of beer that will please most crowds? IPA? Hefesomething? Help out a clueless host!
It's not often you get to ask the cocktail elite for advice about parties you throw at home, but at the recent San Antonio Cocktail Conference, Sasha Petraske, the proprietor of New York's acclaimed Milk & Honey, opened up the floor to questions. And this top barkeep has been thinking a lot about home cocktail parties lately—he's working on a book on the topic. Here are a few gems of advice that Petraske offered for those looking to serve delicious drinks at their next shindig.
Beers that are too heavy or too hoppy will fill you up and fry your palate. Here are a few recommended beers to sip with your favorite Super Bowl snacks.
Batching up cocktails in advance provides you, as the party host, a way to offer guests well-made cocktails, but frees you up to otherwise enjoy the party, and not feel compelled to make drinks to order. It's a win-win.
A little advance planning—and some quick cheats to set yourself up to win—can ensure your post-Thanksgiving (or post-any) feast ends on a high note.
Once again, it's the holiday season, that crazy time of dinner guests, food preparation, gift giving, and wacky relatives. Is it any wonder we could all use a strong one? If your plans involve hosting a cocktail party this season (or pouring a few rounds of cocktails on Thanksgiving day), you might want some advice to help you cope. If you feel yourself starting to panic, relax: careful planning and a few tips should help relieve the stress.
Perhaps spurred on by last year's publication of Dave Wondrich's Punch, these convivial, sharable concoctions are seeing a decided resurgence. We like to think of them as the bar's equivalent to the family-style meal. We recently toured some of Los Angeles' best bars in search of truly delicious punches that you can make at home for holiday parties and family dinners.
Your costume's ready, down to the fake blood and creepy contact lenses—but if your Halloween party doesn't include a pumpkin cocktail, it's really not complete. We asked a few of our favorite bartenders, including Jessica Gonzalez of Death & Co. in New York, Rhiannon Enlil of Cure in New Orleans, and Adam Robinson of The Bent Brick in Portland, OR, to help us out with a few delicious pumpkin-spiked drinks to help you celebrate. Check out the drinks (and get the recipes) in the slideshow.
Whether you're grilling in the backyard or gathering on a rooftop, chilling at the beach or on a boat, this weekend's going to call for a few refreshing beverages. Here are a few recommendations from the Serious Eats: Drinks team.
You've got a grill, you've got the grillables. You've got deck chairs and a kiddie pool and hopefully a cooler full of pilsner. But a summer party is even more festive with a big pitcher of sangria. And we're not just talking the standard stuff; here are four fun variations on the classic mix of wine, fruit, and spirits.
The large-format drink is the savior of the summer party. When everything heads outdoors starting with Memorial Day weekend, pitcher drinks and cooling punches seem especially welcome, and they can make hosting a barbecue or backyard get-together much more convenient.
One of the best ways to learn about spirits is to taste, taste, taste. When you taste a flight of bourbons, for example, you have the chance to pit the spirits against each other, and learn more about the bourbon category by exploring the differences between individual bottlings.
Not everyone at your party will be drinking alcohol, even if it's a kids-free event. Providing booze-free drinks for your guests is just good hosting. One fun way to impress your guests is with house-made sodas.
You can't ring in the New Year without bubbles. (Go ahead and toast with sparkling cider or a non-alcoholic punch dosed with club soda—it's the fizz that counts.) If you're not shelling out for real Champagne, there are a dizzying array of options. Luckily the Serious Eats team has sorted out the delicious from the drainpours and now present to you our top choices in bubbly for ringing in 2011.
The first time I hosted a cocktail party, I spent most of my time preparing cocktails to order. The drinks were great, but it prevented me from having much fun. Making batches of drinks in advance is a much better idea—all it takes is a little math.
So, you're planning a cocktail party? Commendable, friend, commendable. Careful planning and a few tips should help relieve the stress you're undoubtedly starting to feel. Let's start with the essentials: glassware, liquor, mixers, and ice.