The Cocktail Party

A cocktail party can be more daunting than a dinner party if you don't remember the rules. However, it is a great way to kick back and relax with your friends. There is no need to have a theme or a special occasion.

The Key Factors:

  • Expect 60% of the number of people you invited.
  • Do not serve from the kitchen. Set up a bar.
  • Have someone (not you) tend bar. Ask a friend or hire a local bartender ($15-20/hr).
  • Multiply the number of guests times three for the number of glasses you need.
  • Use small plates and finger foods. This is not a dinner party.
  • A cocktail party should be two hours in length sometime between 6PM and 10PM.
  • The area in your home that you select should be cozy, but not overcrowded.
  • Keep furniture to a minimum. You want guests to stand and socialize, not sit in the corner.
  • In order to cut down on the number of bottles of alcohol you need, select a signature drink(s).
  • Don't forget to have non-alcoholic beverages (again choose a small selection) for the designated drivers.

In honor of Spring and taking are cue from the spring fashion colors (turquoise, coral, green, raspberry), here are a few signature drink suggestions:

The Go Girls at ON THE GO 4 U are champagne drinkers so here are a few ways we suggest to change the champagne:

1. Add 2 dashes of Chambord or pomegranate juice to champagne.
2. Add 4 dashes of Blue Curacao to champagne.
3. Shake ice, a measure of Creme de Menthe and Irish Whiskey, strain into a champagne glass and top with champagne.

Not a champagne drinker? Try Smirnoff Ice with a touch of your favorite colored liquor and serve over ice.

Remember, we are thinking spring so why not try these combinations:

Bellinis are always fun. Mix it up a bit and use the same concept for a martini. Use 2 measures of your favorite vodka to 1/2 measure of Peach Schnapps and a touch of peach juice. Use the same preparation method as with any martini.

Margarita with a twist. Use equal parts tequila and pink grapefruit juice and 1/2 measure of Countreau.

Want something a little blue? Use equal parts of vodka, tequila and blue curacao. Stir with ice and fill the glass with lemonade.

And of course don't forget, the classic mojito!

If you are going to experiment, make sure you test your recipe before the party. Whatever the signature drink, remember to drink responsibly and be a responsible host.

Must have books for party planning:

Every household that is going to have cocktail parties should have a decent bar manual or classic cocktail book.

The Last-Minute Party Girl by Erika Lenkert. This must have book contains party etiquette as well as quick recipes that are great for any cocktail party.

The Cooking Club Party Cookbook which is full of great party ideas and recipes.

How often should you have a cocktail party? Well, if your social schedule is busy and assuming that your friends are hosting events as well, we suggest having some kind of get together for each season as a relaxing time to catch up with the gang.

Indra A Books, author of this and many other lifestyle articles, is the owner and founder of ON THE GO 4 U, Personal Shoppers & Concierge Service in the Washington DC metropolitan area. The company's creed is to provide its clients with the ultimate life management experience. In addition to its services, ON THE GO 4 U also publishes a monthly e-zine and conducts workshops on wardrobe, entertaining and decorating.

For more information about the author and ON THE GO 4 U, please visit http://www.onthego4u.net

© 2005 Indra A Books for ON THE GO 4 U

In The News:

Top 100 Spirits of 2019  Wine Enthusiast Magazine Online
The winners: Harpers Design Awards 2019  Harpers Wine & Spirit Trade Review
Top 25 Beers of 2019  Wine Enthusiast Magazine Online
Share the Spirit wine tasting raises $1226  Claremore Daily Progress
Hugs & Shrugs | Editorials  Denton Record Chronicle
Spirits drive UK exports to China  Harpers Wine & Spirit Trade Review

Beer, Wine and Your Bones

If you like the taste of a good brew, then... Read More

Rare Varietals Cure Wine Boredom

The future of the Australian wine industry will be shaped... Read More

A Private Owners Guide to Bottling Fine Whisky

The majority of private owners of whisky casks are looking... Read More

An Introduction to Wine

What is wine?Wine has been made for centuries from just... Read More

Buying Wine, How to Read a Wine Label and Select a Great Bottle of Wine

I must admit, that for many of us, walking into... Read More

The Harmony between Wine and Food

Wine is a social drink which should be enjoyed in... Read More

Wine Etiquette With Ease

Correct wine etiquette makes the tasting experience much more enjoyable.... Read More

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting Component I: LookThe first step you have to... Read More

Chablis Wine

Chablis is thought to have originated in northern Spain and... Read More

The Mystery of Decanting

Decanting is a strange word to many people. Some do... Read More

Australian Wines

Australia's wine industry has boomed in the past ten years.... Read More

If You Plan On Drinking, Do These Critical Things Before You Leave The House

Buy a BreathalyzerA Breathalyzer is a portable hand-held device in... Read More

Overcoming Red Wine Spills

Red wine spills can be a disaster whether they occur... Read More

Counting Carbs With Wine

The recent health claims that wines have antioxidants... Read More

Sauvignon Blanc Wine

Sauvignon Blanc wine is crisp, high in acidity and light-... Read More

Champagne

Champagne is without question the finest sparkling wine made in... Read More

Choosing that Perfect Wine for a Dinner Party

So, you find yourself having been invited to a dinner... Read More

Whisky Syndicates

Whisky syndicates are groups of private owners and many have... Read More

Carignane Wine

The Carignane grape variety is one of the most widely... Read More

How to Order Wine in a Restaurant

Ordering wine in a restaurant is not much different than... Read More

France Car Hire

Here is a quick summary of the different French wine... Read More

Ideal Wine Temperature

The ideal temperature to store wines is between 55ºF and... Read More

Guide To Tasting Wine

The basics of tasting wine are relatively simple to learn.... Read More

Enjoy Your Favorite Wine - But With Some Rules

The mere mention of etiquette brings to mind various images,... Read More

The Curious History Of Wine Consumption In America

The history of wine consumption in America has been frought... Read More