So you are organising your own party then? Don’t panic!! We have
made what we hope will be a useful check list to use as a handy reference
point to ensure a hassle free party. Remember the 6P’s – planning
and preparation prevent poor party performance!! Some of the things on
our list may seem a bit boring – but essential to party success.
We are proposing some different drinks ideas which we think are a more
exciting alternative to mulled wine!
Sounds obvious but don’t forget to send invitations to everyone – confirming
date, venue (and how to find it!) and timings as far ahead as you can.
Also – asking everyone to RSVP several days before the party date.
Of course not everyone will reply but it may save time ringing round
close to the party date so you know how many people to expect. Why not
make a guest list, then you can update it regularly with who has replied.
If you decide to have a theme or some kind of fancy dress – make
sure everyone knows – you really don’t want to be the only
person there wearing a bunny outfit à la Bridget Jones! Or likewise
if you are doing a formal cocktail party rather than a informal catch
up with friends – be sure to let people know if you are expecting
them to be dressy (or not).
- Check in advance that you have sufficient
glassware, cutlery, plates, napkins etc. If
you are borrowing things from friends, make
sure you keep a list of everything so that
all the right items are returned to the right
- Depending on how many people you are expecting – you
might want to remove any valuable or delicate
ornaments that could get in the way.
- To make it as easy as possible on yourself
to avoid minimum amount of preparation, we
strongly recommend preparing or buying finger
buffet type options. That way whether you choose
sausages on a stick or chic canapés,
you will have time to circulate and not be
rushing backwards and forwards to the kitchen
all evening!! Or spend ages washing up afterwards!
After all you want to enjoy the party too!
- There is a fabulous range of nibbly party
essentials from all the major supermarkets
such as Tesco and Waitrose – they even
have free glass hire if you book in advance.
Click through on our where
to buy section to
check out some of the selection of yummy nibbles
you can choose from.
A measure: a standard shot is usually 25ml (2.5cl),
try and find something that you can use as
near as possible to that size. How about a
small egg cup? Even if it proves to be a little
larger than the average shot, it’s no
problem so long as you follow the correct proportions
of the cocktail recipe ingredients.
Cocktail shaker (don’t feel you have to
buy one – you could use a jar with a secure
screw top lid)
Kuyper Cherry Brandy, De
Kuyper Blue Curaçao, De Kuyper Triple
Sec (or Cointreau has a similar
but not quite so tangy flavour), Angostura
Bitters, Gin, White rum
(such as Bacardi), assorted mixers – orange, grapefruit, cranberry
- Plenty of ice – don’t panic if
you haven’t enough time to make it – most
supermarkets sell it by the bag.
- For those sad people who claim not to like
cocktails (yes there are still some left in
the world!) - plenty of red and white wine
and some beer just in case.
- Plenty of lemons, lime or oranges to use
as garnish and also enough to make juice. (If
you want to save some time on making freshly
squeezed juice – buy a squeezy Jif lemon,
they’re not just for pancake day! – and
some lime cordial)Hot tips!
Don’t be too ambitious and pick really
difficult cocktail recipes. Why not select 3
or 4 recipes which you have had the chance to
practice and that you are confident in making.
Why not check the recipes as a handy
reference from our how to
If you want to serve a particular cocktail on
something that doesn’t have anything fizzy
in it so it won’t go flat with people arriving
at different times during the evening.
- Don’t be afraid to experiment! That’s
the fun of cocktail making!
- Allowing for 25ml (2.5cl) per shot means
you should get up to 28 measures from a standard
bottle of spirits such as gin or vodka which
would be 70cl size. Many liqueurs bottles are
50cl size which would give 20 shots. Check
your bottle sizes so that you don’t run
out! Its worth doing a quick calculation if
you are planning to make a cocktail for everyone
- Always make sure you have sufficient options
available for anyone not drinking alcohol – it
is possible to have non alcoholic cocktail.
How about a Seabreeze – but leave out
the vodka, or a Lime
and Lemon Bitters?
If you want to kick the party off with a bit of a bang, why not try our
cocktail of the month Party
Punch? We have also developed some new
cocktail ideas which you might like to have a go at making for your