Fall Cocktail Party

I love having people over for cocktails.  It is such a fun and relaxing way to spend time with friends. The key is making it easy. Besides the guest list, the most important element for a great party is having wonderful drinks and delicious food. Stocking up on extra essentials like festive cocktail napkins, stemless bar glasses, and chic serving trays, make hosting effortless. Here are a few of my favorite cocktail party must-haves:

 

Everything at Dean & DeLuca is wonderful, especially their incredible Spring Kitchen Autumn Rolls and cheese selection. Their pigs in a blanket are truly the best I have ever had, made with Wagyu beef and rolled in buttery cream cheese puff pastry dough.

William Poll is an Upper East Side institution and a fantastic resource for a party. They have delicious nuts, sesame sticks, and wonderful homemade potato chips and dips. My favorite dips are the watercress and curry.  I like to set out their potato chips in bowls all around my living room before the party starts. At the end of the night they are always empty!

Crème Brûlée Almonds, from Squirrel Brand Nuts, are the perfect balance between salty and sweet. But beware they are dangerous! Once you have one you won’t be able to stop.

Cocktail napkins are fun to collect. Some of my favorites are from D. Porthault and Lori Jayne Monogramming. I like napkins in darker hues for winter, and lighter floral prints for summer.

For a well-stocked bar, I always have Macallan 12 scotch, Maestro Tequilero Tequila, Ketel One vodka, and Taylor’s 1985 vintage port.

I love the Bartender’s Choice app. It has dozens of recipes for cool cocktails. My new favorite is Siesta. The cocktail includes tequila, Campari, grapefruit, lime, simple syrup and Angostura bitters.