Perfect Sips for Outdoor Soirées
Build a Crowd-Wowing Bar
Serve a Signature Cocktail
Recipes: 7 Cocktails for a Crowd
Choosing one party-appropriate drink and gathering a large amount of a few ingredients makes pre-party shopping a cinch. Plus, day-of set-up is simple: all you need is a large drink dispenser or pitcher, an ice bucket, and cups.
Limit Your Liquors
If you choose to have a DIY cocktail station, Millikin suggests sticking with just one or two spirits, like gin or rum—both popular and great in summer drinks. Guests can tailor the taste to their liking with fun, flavored mixers.
“I like to do a “G&T” bar with different flavored tonics and juices,” says Millikin. “Mojito stations are also great—offer mint leaves and lime juice so guests can make the classic version, and muddled berries for a fruity take.”
- Recipe: Pineapple-Mango Mojito
Throwing a daytime brunch or shower? Mimosas and bellinis are affordable and a cinch to whip up. Pair your favorite champagne or sparkling wine with fresh squeezed or pureed fruits, like orange, grapefruit, peach, strawberry, or blackberry.
Pop the Cork
Save: NV Allimant Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Rosé - Alsace, France
Splurge: 2004 Taittinger "Comtes de Champagne" Brut Blanc de Blancs - Champagne, France
Save: 2012 St. Supéry Estate Sauvignon Blanc - Napa Valley, California
Splurge: 2012 François Crochet Sauvignon Blanc - Sancerre, France
Save: 2010 Jordan Chardonnay - Russian River Valley, California
Splurge: 2010 Domaine Leflaive Macon Verze - Burgundy, France
Save: 2011 Soter "North Valley" Pinot Noir - Willamette Valley, Oregon
Splurge: 2009 Twomey Pinot Noir - Sonoma Coast, California
Save: 2011 Kalinda Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa Valley, California
Splurge: 2010 Quintessa Bordeaux Blend - Rutherford, California
Hydrate and Quench
Try a make-your-own Arnold Palmer station with different flavored iced teas (peach and chai are great variations), or a non-alcoholic mojito bar, which subs club soda for rum.