N’awlins-inspired Recipes for Mardi Gras

Gumbo

Shrimp Gumbo is a perfect dish to celebrate Mardi Gras!

Laissez les bons temps rouler! (Let the good times roll!)  February 21st marks Mardi Gras this year, but those who embrace the Carnival season celebrate from mid-January until midnight on the “Fat Tuesday” prior to Ash Wednesday… the dawn of Lent.

For me, I fell in love with New Orleans through her food. From spicy gumbo to addictive sweet beignets, there was so much to enjoy!

Mardi Gras is a great excuse to enjoy a Southern-style dinner, with N’awlins-inspired cuisine on the plate and a breezy cocktail in the glass.  Here are some recipes to help you bring a touch of New Orleans to your table!…

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Festive Holiday Drinks

Champagne

For a holiday party, you can't go wrong with Champagne!

Can you believe we’re already a week into December? With the holiday season already upon us, I’m sure you’ll be serving (and enjoying!) a drink or two.

When I have a party, I always have a favorite red and white wine on hand, a bottle of bubbly, and one signature cocktail and mocktail. I also love to have apple cider and eggnog on hand because the taste and smell just evokes memories of the holiday.

For cocktails, I loved these ones developed by Tom Smith of Union Square Wines: The Gingered Apple and The Kentucky Toddy. They were perfect for Thanksgiving and are still wonderful now in the colder months.

Here are a few more beverages that are sure to make you the toast of the party!…

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Fall Cocktails

Thanksgiving Cocktails

Warm up with these Cocktails – still perfect for after Thanksgiving!

Holidays means two things for most of us: feasting and family! As far as feasting, the panoply of dishes at the holiday table usually has hosts and guests alike wondering what they should offer to drink.

While I believe wine is best for the meal (and all your wine concerns can be quelled with one of our holiday six-packs….merciless plug, I know!), following are two cocktails that will certainly make cocktail hour and dessert a delicious success.

As far as family is concerned, these offerings should put a smile on the faces of friends and family alike and calm the nerves so often associated with entertaining for the holidays! Both the Gingered Apple and Kentucky Toddy can be served before or after your holiday dinner.

“The Gingered Apple” brings together the sweeter tones of Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur and Red Jacket Orchards All Natural Apple Cider with the savory elements of Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Dolin Dry Vermouth, and Regan’s Orange Bitters. The resultant cocktail is a balanced expression of autumnal yumminess! If you’re looking for a lighter expression of the ingredients it is best to shake in your cocktail shaker. If a stronger drink is desired, simply add ingredients to shaker, fill with ice, and stir instead of shaking to avoid dilution….

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Halloween Cocktails

drink

These Halloween Cocktails are perfect for pre and post Trick-or-Treating!

With Summer in the rear view and the chill of Autumn slowly creeping in, our cocktails, along with food and wine, take a turn for the heartier. And as the first of our Fall “holidays” approaches, I present two Halloween cocktails for the occasion: both treats with no bartending tricks necessary.

Whether you are a seasoned Trick-or-Treater who refuses to give up the tradition or are gearing up to take the kids around, these concoctions should add autumnal flair to the evening and throughout the season….

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5 Cool & Soothing Summer Drinks

Our open letter to the summer heat wave from the blog team at FreshDirect.

Mint Julep

Mint Julep

Dear Summer Heat Wave,

We fought valiantly, but now we’re ready to surrender.

After so many days of sweltering streets, stifling subway platforms and sizzling sidewalks, we’d throw in the towel, but we really need it to wipe the sweat from our brows.

Heat Wave, can we interest you in sitting down to discuss a little clemency over a cool, refreshing drink? We’ve plucked out five rejuvenating summer drink options from our One-Click Recipe collection that sound like exactly what we need right about now. (See below.)…

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Cocktail 101: A Start-Up Guide to Great Mixology!

Most imbibers leave the mixing to the bartenders and mixologists, and with good reason.

Summer Cocktails

Summer Cocktails

We city-dwellers are spoiled by having some the most creative minds in the world masterminding cocktail recipes at the city’s finest establishments.

That doesn’t mean cocktail enthusiasts can’t take a few tips from the pros and create surprisingly dashing and delicious drinks at home! …

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Delicious Drinks for Derby Day!

Derby Day is a time for big bets, bigger hats and tasty cocktails. Fashion is high and the expectation of a derby-themed cocktail is higher.

Cocktails for the Kentucky Derby!

Cocktails for the Kentucky Derby!

Here is a duo that should cover your bases for a party scenario that often encompasses an array of taste preferences.

First, we tip our hat to a perennial all-star: The Mint Julep is the quintessence of Derby Day imbibing with a permanent place in America’s liquid history. …

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Two Tantalizing Cocktails for Cinco de Mayo

With Cinco de Mayo fast approaching, let’s take a look at two fun and tasty cocktails for the adventurous palate!

Cinco de Mayo Cocktails

Cinco de Mayo Cocktails

Before we get rolling, I will make quick mention of a product that has taken the country by storm.

If you are strapped for time or cash (or both!) click on Skinnygirl Margarita and “forgeddaboutit!” Bethanny Frankel‘s open-and-serve margarita is a quick option for the calorie-counter seeking a festive sip. Simply pour over ice or blend.

Those looking for a heightened marriage of tastes can experiment with equally festive — yet more elaborate — cocktails. …

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Alcohol & Health: News That May Surprise You!

Hooray — that glass of red wine you just drank is good for your health! Oh wait, no, drinking that bottle of wine is actually pretty risky business. Confused yet? You’re not alone.

Maggie Moon, MS, RD

Maggie Moon, MS, RD

In this week’s post, the fifth and last in the series of National Nutrition Month coverage of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 (DGA-2010), I’ll try to set the record straight; or at least, to provide a review of what the official state-of-the-science research says about it.

First off, drinking too much has well-known health consequences, and nobody is advocating overdoing it. Abstaining is always an important option.

That said, there are nuances for responsible adults of legal drinking age who enjoy a drink now and then. Namely, there is strong evidence for heart health benefits, and there are also ways for breastfeeding moms to responsibly enjoy a drink, too….

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Classic Cocktails for a Mad Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras is fast approaching (next Tuesday!), and those of us not fortunate enough to sample our way through the French Quarter of New Orleans may want to bring the party home instead.

Mardi Gras Cocktailsl

Mardi Gras Cocktails

All beads and debauchery aside, New Orleans is considered the birthplace of the American cocktail, so here are a couple of “Nawlins-born” concoctions to craft for your Mardi Gras celebration.

Our first cocktail is The Bourbon Smash, a 19th Century creation that has taken on different manifestations over the years. This is a more savory take on the Mint Julep that many derby enthusiasts are familiar with. …

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