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There’s No Wrong Way to Holiday & The Perfect Holiday Cocktail Recipe

Even for an “Entertaining Expert”, the holidays can get a little daunting. This year I took a cue from my friends at DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse and decided to celebrate the idea that there is no wrong way to holiday. Whether you go glam, keep it homey, or do a little of both the holidays can and should be fun, festive and little magical too. To help ease any entertaining worries here are My Top 5 Holiday Entertaining Tips and the perfect drink- The Ruby Slipper Recipe- for you to clink all holiday season.

  1. Don’t over think the drinks! Prepare one signature cocktail in a big batch, have red and white wine, and one beer offering. Set out your glassware on your bar area, bar cart or simply on a tray. Have some accessories like sprigs of fresh herbs, frozen cranberries and pomegranate seeds so guests can easily dress up their drinks. Remember holidays are the ideal time to break out your pretty pitchers and punch bowls.
  2. Don’t forget the teetotalers. Always keep an assortment of sparkling and still water on the bar for designated drivers, expecting friends and teetotalers. Put out small bowls of sliced lemons and limes for them add in.
  3. Ambiance is easy. Make sure the music is on and even lighting one or two candles creates a good vibe. Avoid over scented candles and choose music appropriate for your party. To keep it lively, bring the outdoors in with simple fresh cut flowers and branches for fun additions to your tabletops.
  4. Cook Ahead! Anything you can make in advance- do! Guests come hungry so be ready with an appetizer. Go for bites that can be served at room temperature. Easy elegant appetizers can be made with just 3 or 4 ingredients or simply put out a selection of store- bought antipasto.
  5. First Impressions Last. Decide what you’ll wear way ahead of time. This may seem vain but last minute preparation often leaves little time for the host to get themselves ready. If you pick something a couple of nights ahead of time it alleviates stress and ensures you look and feel good when your guests arrive.

Ruby Slipper Cocktail Recipe

Maureen Petrosky

For one:

1 ounce Campari

1 ounce sweet vermouth

1 ounce Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Rye

1 orange wedge

Red rimming sugar

Pomegranate seeds

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice combine the Campari, sweet vermouth and Rye.  Stir until well- chilled.

Use an orange wedge to rub around the rim of your glass.

Lightly dip the glass into the red sugar to coat evenly. Strain the chilled cocktail into the glass. Add a few pomegranate seeds for garnish.

For a Crowd:

1 ½  cups Campari

1 ½  cups sweet vermouth

1 ½  cups Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Rye

Orange wedges

Red rimming sugar

Pomegranate seeds

In a large pitcher combine the Campari, sweet vermouth and Rye whiskey. Refrigerate overnight or until well- chilled. If you do not have time to chill serve on the rocks.

Use the orange wedge, juicy side towards the glass, to press around the rim of the glass.

Lightly dip the glass into the red sugar to coat evenly. Strain the chilled cocktail into the glass. Add a few pomegranate seeds for garnish.

Makes 12 drinks

This post was created in partnership with DSW. All opinions expressed in the post are my own and not those of DSW.

(Photo Credit Stacy Wickham)

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6 comments

  1. Wendy says:

    As a teetotaler, I greatly appreciate being thought of. It can get a little awkward at times – but I would feel welcome at your parties. 🙂 Plus I need all the help I can get preparing signature drinks for others! Thanks!

  2. Elizabeth O says:

    I think that it’s important to personalize our holidays to include all the things we love to share with friends and family. It makes our celebrations more fun. I agree thzt there is no wrong way!

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