Entertaining by Design
A Toast to the Batch
If the goal of entertaining is to have a good time, then every host can benefit from a smart large-format cocktail recipe. Designed for more socializing and less toil behind the bar, the best recipes can be prepped the morning before your event, leaving you plenty of time to lay out the glassware, prep your garnish and fetch the ice before your guests arrive. Choose your vessel wisely: Rhode Island glass blowers Elizabeth Pannell and James Watkins, from their studio Peàn Doubulyu, have designed and hand-blown a stunning yet sturdy pitcher and tumbler set, perfect for holiday merrymaking. Pour the first round—then encourage guests to set their own pace for the rest of the evening.
My favorite holiday cocktail for a crowd is The Anchor (see right), a tried and true staple that’s just sweet and spicy enough to appease even the most discerning palate. A generous pour of Añejo and dark rums fuse harmoniously with fresh apple cider and St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram, a potent spiced liqueur that amplifies luxurious notes of vanilla and butterscotch. Garnish the batch with a light dusting of fresh ground cinnamon and let your guests take it from there.
Leishla Maldonado of The Eddy makes The Coquito Banana (see right), a modern spin on the traditional coquito recipe (rum, condensed milk, coconut cream, spices) passed down from her family in Puerto Rico.
She uses Newport’s own Thomas Tew Rum, which provides a smooth, oaky canvas for the cocktail. This no-cook, dairy-free recipe adds fresh banana for natural sweetness and raw egg for body. Toasted coconut flakes, whole clove and star anise bejewel the glass in this festive and tropical-inspired nog.
Mixologists Ann Boschini and Audrey King’s Baby, It’s Cold Outside (see right) encapsulates the highlights of the holidays: bubbles, the scent of fresh evergreen and fresh winter citrus. The key to success is a three-day infusion of fresh rosemary in Sons of Liberty’s True Born Gin that springs to life with the addition of lime zest, honey syrup and brut Champagne bubbles. Keep these chilled ingredients on hand to build a pitcher on the fly, the perfect round for a celebratory toast.
For more festive batch cocktails for entertaining, including the Winter in Pear-adise and the Stateside “Irish” Coffee, visit EdibleRhody.Com.