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How to Throw a Fabulous Cocktail Party

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People are embracing the age-old tradition of throwing classic cocktail parties. There is something quintessentially glamorous about dressing up, clinking delicious cocktails and catching up with friends. Here are three approaches you can take when hosting a party:

  • -Stocking up and offering a full bar with different types of spirits, liqueurs and mixers.
  • -Creating a themed bar that puts one spirit in the spotlight, but offers different mixers.
  • -Devising a signature cocktail bar that features two types of cocktails and beer and wine.

So, how does one choose an approach? Obviously, budget and time play a huge part in determining which way is right for you. There are pros and cons associated to each method.

 Full Bar

A full bar allows your guests to concoct their favorite cocktail. It also gives them a chance to experiment with different mixers, liqueurs, spirits, juices and garnishes. However, a full bar is quite costly to generate. You might also see quite a mess at the end of the night after everyone has made their drink. If you want to go the full bar route, make sure that you have plenty of base spirits like rum, vodka, gin, etc. Group your liqueurs by flavor to make it easier for people to find their favorite. To help partygoers, leave a cocktail recipe book out for them to peruse. Be sure to include all the appropriate bartending essentials such as bar spoons shakers, strainers, muddlers, jiggers and ice. For fun, leave a tip jar out in case one of your guests turns out to be the party’s favorite bartender.

 

Themed Bar

A themed bar cuts down on all of the costs associated with providing a fully stocked bar. All you need to do is to select one or two base spirits to feature and provide different mixers. For instance, you can set out vodka and Stirrings mixers so people can create apple martinis, lemon drops, cosmopolitans and Bloody Marys. The con, of course, is that people won’t have the same choices as they would with a full bar, but they will enjoy choosing from a variety of delightful mixers.

Signature Cocktail Bar

A signature cocktail bar reduces party costs, showcases two types of cocktails and gives people other options like beer and wine. As an additional benefit, you can play mixologist for the night by coming up with your own signature cocktails to show off. Signature cocktails may consist of a base spirit, fruit juice, liqueur and garnish. Have fun with coming up with your own by putting a spin on a classic recipe or personalizing your own favorite cocktail. You may also get some inspiration by using seasonal ingredients, locally made base spirits, spices or herbs. If you want to share the ingredient list, create recipe cards for people to take home. Hosting your own cocktail party is not only fun, but it allows you to tap into your creative side with your friends.

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Don’t forget – a fabulous hostess always offers non-alcoholic choices for the guests who don't drink, has food available, and makes sure everyone gets home safely.