This post is sponsored by Pinnacle® Original Vodka
I was born with an innate desire to entertain friends and family with good food and creative drinks. It must be in my blood as my dad was the same way. Every weekend he hosted dinner parties and my job was to not only help him in the kitchen, but to set the table and print out menus for our guests. Each menu would showcase what my dad was preparing and there was always a special dessert and a specialty cocktail. As I got older, I became intrigued with cooking and mixology. I then went on to pursue a career in the hospitality industry which led to many wonderful opportunities later in life. To this day, I live for entertaining guests.
Food is my life and my dream is to take a trip to France. While I have been to Italy a few times, I have always been obsessed with French culture. I have French inspired decor in my bedroom and bathroom. Someday I will make it there but in the meantime, all I can do it create my own French lifestyle and let’s just say, my friends love it when I host a get-together. There is always plenty of food, fun, laughter and of course, adult libations.
With summer in full swing, my calendar is filled with events that I am hosting and one of my favorite themes is a gourmet-themed picnic with classy cocktails. PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA is a crowd favorite and I love mixing it with flavored sparkling water and fresh lemon. Have you tried PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA? It has long been a staple in my liquor collection and was love at first sip the first time I tried it. What I love most about this brand it that it is devoted to what matters, exceptional quality and superior taste. PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA is created with the finest French ingredients and distilled five times in France’s Cognac region, resulting in an incredibly clean, smooth taste. It is the ultimate combination of quality and value, making it the perfect go-to Vodka for everyday or special occasions.My friends are always happy so see me when I come to a gathering with PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA in hand.
My go-to drink of the summer is PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA with sparkling lemonade, fresh lemon and basil. It is light, refreshing and easy to make. Simply fill a glass with ice, add 1.5 ounces of PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA, fill with sparkling lemonade (or sparkling lemon water) and then garnish with a fresh basil leaf and lemon wheel. Trust me when I say this,your friends will say oui oui. Nothing beats a light cocktail that is crisp and refreshing.
When it comes to food, there are so many simple dishes that require minimal time in the kitchen so you can spend more time relaxing with your friends. When I think of a picnic, simple finger foods that travel well come to mind and that is what I focus on when creating my French-inspired gathering. Artisanal crackers, gourmet cheeses, fruit preserves, honey, sliced meats and fresh fruit are ideal for a no-fuss gathering. I work a lot so the last thing I want to do is spend hours in the kitchen when I can spend more time socializing with friends.
As they say, less is more and it has never led me astray. By focusing on simple flavors and one stellar cocktail, you and your guests will have a time to remember. To help with your next social gathering, I’ve included my favorite tips that have a certain je ne sais quoi! I hope they inspire you to try your hand at French-entertaining and plan your next get-together.. Check out pinnaclevodka.com to see where you can buy Pinnacle Original near you.
- Less is more. Focus on simplicity with menu planning. Toast points topped with gourmet cheese and fruit spreads are always a crowd pleaser.
- Feature a signature cocktail that can be made in a batch for easy serving. While bartending is fun, you don’t want to be so busy making drinks that you can’t enjoy your friends.
- Use seasonal fruits and vegetables as a focal point for your menu.
- Eat the rainbow. Be sure your gourmet spread is filled with colors.
- Table scaping. You don’t have to spend a ton of money on table decor. I love going to vintage thrift shops and finding unique table and glassware to accentuate my table.
- Wooden cutting boards make great displays for cheese and fruit.
Stay tuned as I will be featuring some fun cocktails featuring PINNACLE® ORIGINAL VODKA on the blog this summer.
Drink Smart®Pinnacle® Imported Vodka, 40% Alc./Vol. Distilled from Grain, ©2018 Portfield Importers, Chicago, IL, USA; All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.