Hopefully you took my advice on Friday and had a selfless weekend. This post is about another kind of weekend. You can meet women at parties, so why not throw one of your own?
Even better than a plain old party is the Singles Mixer.
Not on the invite list: any one who is part of a couple. This party is strictly for single people. But, you say, all (or most of ) the single people you know are your friends. Male friends. First, don’t limit yourself to inviting friends. You’ll want at least 30 people on your invite list to make it a successful party, so invite co-workers, cousins, acquaintances, classmates you rarely talk to. Oh, and the rule for each invitee is that they have to bring at least one single person of the opposite gender.
Stocking the Bar
Liquor. The basic types of alcohol that you’ll need are: vodka for martinis--preferably a good vodka like Stoli, lemon vodka (you’re using this for mixing, so a cheap vodka is fine), bourbon (I suggest Maker’s Mark), gin for martinis (preferably a good gin like Bombay Sapphire), and a cheap gin for mixed drinks (not Beefeater cheap--Seagram’s cheap). If you want to add another spirit, vanilla vodka is a good mixing alcohol. Keep the vodka in the freezer.
If your group of friends are wine drinkers, have a bottle of white wine and a bottle of red wine on hand, but there is probably no need to have more than that. Guests love to bring bottles of wine so you’ll not want for wine. Chardonnay is a good standby white wine. I hate it, but most people who drink white wine seem to like it. I prefer a Reisling. A Shiraz or Cabernet is a good standby red wine. I’m not huge on buying expensive wines for parties. Intimate dinner parties, yes. Large mixer parties, no.
You’ll want some basic liqueurs like Triple Sec (or Cointreau if you want to spend a little more), dry vermouth and sweet vermouth.
You’ll also need non-alcoholic mixers: tonic water, club soda (best purchased in the short six packs so it doesn’t go flat like it does in a liter bottle), grenadine, Rose’s lime juice, bitters, lemon juice and orange juice (if you’ll be making screwdrivers or tequila sunrises) and/or cranberry juice (if you’ll be making cosmopolitans). All of these non-alcoholic mixers are available at most grocery stores.
For garnishes, have sugar, maraschino cherries, limes, lemons and large green cocktail olives.
Measuring glass or a shot glass to use for measuring
Ice bucket and tongs
Cocktail glasses. These can be had for cheap at Pier One Imports (or even a thrift store). Martini glasses. Short and tall tumblers. Wine glasses. Please use glass, not plastic. If you must, use plastic for drinks that would go in a tumbler. You must use glass for drinks that go in a martini glass!
Cocktail shaker and a sturdy glass that fits over the top for shaking. The metal tops that come with cocktail shakers are impossible to remove. To see what kind of sturdy glass I’m talking about, watch the bartender at your local bar.
Toothpicks (for the olive garnish)
Cocktail recipe book
The successful host will know how to mix a martini, Manhattan, Lemon Drop, Cosmopolitan, Gin and Tonic, and a Tequila (or Vodka) Sunrise. Surprised by the Tequila Sunrise? They’re really cool looking and I’m trying to bring them back in vogue.
Up on Friday: Feeding the Crowd