Step 1 - Make A Guest List
It also helps to have a mix of subject matter experts on a wide variety of subjects or a group of people who are all subject matter experts on the same topic. The point of this is that you will want the conversation to be lively and fast-moving but not abrasive. Bonus points if you can get everyone to dress up!
Step 2 - Cocktail Recipes And Stocking The Bar
Bourbon Barrel Foods makes both Woodford Reserve and Old Forester cocktail provisions, but Angostura bitters can be found anywhere and you may even have a bottle laying around that seems to multiply. The Jack Rudy Cocktail Co. makes some great cocktail cherries, as well.
You’ll also want to stock up on proper barware. A three piece shaker that can be used as both a mixing glass and a cocktail shaker is versatile for both shaken and stirred cocktails. Or if you only plan to make stirred cocktails you can use a glass and a Hawthorne strainer.
Glassware should include Martini or coupe glasses, tall glasses, and rocks glasses. Don’t forget to stock up on the ice. Pro Tip: Sonic Drive In Restaurant sells nugget ice by the bag!
Bourbon Stormy CocktailFill a tall glass with ice. Pour in 1.5 ounces Bourbon. Top with Butchertown Soda Ginger Beer or another local ginger beer.
Classic Manhattan Cocktail
Combine all ingredients in Boston shaker filled with ice and stir. Strain with a Hawthorne strainer into a chilled glass and add a cherry for garnish.
Old Fashioned Cocktail
“The most versatile garnish option is probably an orange twist. Cut a piece of orange peel, getting as little of the white pith as possible. Squeeze it over the drink to expel the oils and then rub the peel along the rim of the glass. If you want to get creative, you can trim the twist into different shapes,” says The Garnish Blog’s Katie Stryjewski.
“For cocktails with a hint of spice, star anise or cinnamon sticks make beautiful garnishes. And for drinks with citrus, try fresh herbs like mint, rosemary, or thyme.”
Step 3 - Snacks
Add in some olives, pepperoncini, almonds, and cucumber rounds. Finish with crostini and crackers and you look like you’ve been doing this your whole life.
Am I missing any important tips for throwing an amazing cocktail party? Leave me a comment and let me know!