Summer Sangria

sangria

It’s finally summer, and while drink trends come and go, a solid summer staple is sangria (say that 3 times fast!). Sangria is the perfect party drink, just mix up a big batch in advance and it’s ready to go when your guests arrive. Plus sangria is so versatile! It’s basically just wine, fruit, and juice. There are so many different combinations you can make to go with your party theme, or pair with whatever food you are serving.

We’ve gathered up three of our favourite sangria recipes for you - a white, rosé and a more traditional red option.

Paloma Sangria

A Paloma is a popular Mexican cocktail with tequila and grapefruit juice that we’re giving a sangria spin! It pairs perfectly with a Mexican Fiesta, or even if you’re just snacking on some chips and salsa.

  • 1 - 750 ml bottle Sauvignon Blanc (or another dry white wine like Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay)

  • ½ cup tequila

  • 1 medium grapefruit, thinly sliced and quartered

  • 2 medium limes, sliced

  • 3 cups red grapefruit juice

  • Lime wedges, for garnish

  • Soda Water (optional)

Pour the wine and tequila into a large container or pitcher, and add the fruit. Refrigerate and let sit for at least two hours. Add grapefruit juice and stir well. When ready to use, pour over ice-filled 8-ounce glasses and garnish with lime wedges. If you want a lighter taste or to make it sparkling, top with an ounce or two of soda water.

strawberry sangria

Strawberry Lemonade Sangria

This sangria combines two main summer flavours - strawberries and lemonade! This sweeter sangria would be perfect to serve at a bridal shower, or just enjoy a glass while lounging in the sun!

  • 1 - 750ml Bottle of Rosé

  • 1 cup of white rum

  • 4 cups Strawberry lemonade

  • 2 cups of Strawberries, sliced

  • 1 Lemon, sliced

Pour the rosé and the rum into a large container or pitcher, and add the strawberries and lemon. Refrigerate and let sit for at least two hours. Add strawberry lemonade and stir well. If you’re having trouble finding strawberry lemonade, regular will do in a pinch. Or you could make your own strawberry syrup to add to regular lemonade - take about 4 cups of strawberries, toss them into a blender and puree.

Traditional Sangria

Red wine is usually served just below room temperature, but in the summer adding it to sangria means you can serve it icy cold, and add ice cubes without fear of judgement from your friends!

  • 1 - 750 ml bottle of Grenache or Pinot Noir

  • 1 large orange

  • 1 cup thinly sliced apple or pear (or both!)

  • 1 small lemon, sliced into thin rounds

  • ½ cup brandy

  • Soda Water (optional)


Cut the orange in half. Squeeze the juice from one half of the orange into into a pitcher or large drink container. Thinly slice the remaining orange half and place the slices into the pitcher. Add the rest of the fruit, and the brandy. Pour the wine into the pitcher and stir to combine. Chill for at least 2 hours. If you want a lighter taste or to make it sparkling, top individual glasses with an ounce or two of soda water.

Piñata Parties for Adults!

popped pinata

Piñatas are a great way to liven up any party! It lets your guests feel like a kid again, there are surprise gifts, plus everyone get to take out some life’s daily frustrations by hitting something with a big stick!

Piñatas are available in tons of different shapes and colours, so it’s easy to find one that goes with the theme or your party. Amazon has everything from a rainbow (perfect for Pride!) to a treasure chest.

mexican star pinata
lightening bolt pinata.jpg

Or you can make your own out of either a balloon, or some cardboard using paper mache. Mix 2 cups of flour with 2 cups of water and a tablespoon of salt until it’s smooth. Cut newspaper into strips about 1 inch wide by 6 to 8 inches long, dip into the paper mache and then place over your base shape. You’ll need to do this a few days in advance to make sure your piñata has a chance to dry completely. WikiHow has all the directions you need here.

Can’t find that perfect piñata, and making your own seems too daunting? Head to Etsy and have a custom piñata made for your party! We love these ones from Get Smashed Piñatas.

Now the best part - filling your piñata! There are lots of different things you can put in your piñata, but obviously you need candy. Make sure the candies you choose are individually wrapped, and will hopefully survive falling from a few feet onto the floor. A great piñata has more than just candy inside, and we’ve got some suggestions based on the type of party you’re throwing.


sunglasses

Bachelor/Bachelorette

Novelty candy - shaped like body parts
Mini bottles of booze - just make sure they’re in plastic! Or put something in the piñata that can be traded in for a drink, like getting tickets at a fair.
Condoms
Sunglasses
Mini packs of pain killers like Tylenol or Advil for the morning after.



nail+poish

Girls Night Out/Spa Day

Wine flavoured gummy bears
Lotion & Makeup samples
Hair ties
Lip balm - bonus if you make your own!
Nail polish/emery boards
Tea bags

godiva+dark+chocolates

Foodie

Gift cards to local restaurants
Upscale chocolate & candies
Booze
Mini bags of coffee beans
Small kitchen items - wooden spoons, mini whisks etc.

animals-assorted-blur-1509432.jpg

Birthday

Go young with all the retro things you loved as a kid!
Candy necklaces
Ring Pops
Glow sticks
Toy Cars
Stickers
Temporary tattoos

 

One last thing - make sure your guests have a way to get all their treats home! Provide loot bags, just like when you were a kid! Or you could hand out mason jars as a slightly more upscale option for everyone to stash their goodies into.






















Stashes vs Lashes - Our Top 3 Gender Reveal Dessert Ideas

What is this ‘Stashes vs Lashes’ Theme

This year, there is a super cute, new, trendy baby reveal theme and it’s being called Lashes vs Stashes. The thought is, that instead of boy vs girl, you theme your event lash vs stash. It allows for so many cute dessert and decor ideas!

We reached out to some amazing dessert vendors in the area and they created these awesome looks for us that we showed on CTV. I’ll link the episode below as well, if you want to see their dessert awesomeness in live action.

Now, I do want to say a HUGE SORRY to my vendors, because I completely missed giving them the amazing shout-out they deserved on the episode! I’m so sorry to both of you. Just a complete oversight when I was taping. I hugely appreciate all your hard work and support.

Check out all their details below and make sure to head over to their social pages and show them some love! Also, if you have any dessert needs, they have you covered!


VENDOR LOVE:

CAKES ON TOP

Fab owner, Hillary will custom create any cake you want! Her flavours are incredible too!

SOCIAL:

INSTAGRAM

FACEBOOK

WEBSITE


JAKE & ELLA’S COOKIES

Go see owner, Shannon. She’ll make

all your cookie dreams come true!

SOCIAL:

INSTAGRAM

FACEBOOK

……..and now, for all their dessert magic!


Gender Reveal Cookies

These beautiful cookies were designed by Shannon at Jake & Ella’s Cookies! She’s a local baker who adds so much detail to every cookie. She even added edible sparkles to the smaller lash and stash cookies, just to give it a little more glam!

Ask her to stuff the gender reveal cookies for you with coloured icing, and then break them open with all your guests to find out if you’re having a baby boy or girl!

Check out the cookies:

Gender Reveal Cake and Cupcakes

Hillary from Cakes on Top is an absolute pro! She custom designed this cake and cupcakes for us and they were such a huge hit! This year, the trend is to fill your gender reveal cake with candy (sprinkles, coloured chocolate pieces…if it’s candy, it’s in)! She did such an amazing job of this cake. You can catch me online cutting it open…there’s even a blooper too! Her cakes also taste amazing and she has tons of flavours to choose from.

She also designed coloured buttercream filled cupcakes for the segment that were delicious too! She even made custom french macarons.

Check out her desserts:

Behind the Scenes

It’s always amazing when vendors come on to help you create a segment and bring the design to life! Thanks again to Cakes on Top and Jake & Ella’s Cookies. I absolutely could not have done this segment without you!

Check out some of the backstage filming photos here:

Also huge thanks to Rosie and CTV Kitchener for having me on air! It’s always a pleasure!

Watch the episode HERE

Our Top 3 Favourite Boozy Hot Chocolate Recipes!

Why Boozy Hot Chocolate?

Because boozy hot chocolate is even better than regular hot chocolate! We promise you that these to 3 boozy recipes deliver! Not only are they delicious, but they’ll actually make you LIKE winter. Is there a better way to enjoy a comforting drink with the ones you love than hot chocolate? We don’t think so!

The other great thing about these is that if you have kids, you can make them the non-alcoholic version and you can all enjoy warm drinks together!

Want to make these recipes even better? Set up a fire outside and take these drinks out by the snowy fire. They’ll still be delicious and they’ll also warm up your hands!

Without further ado, here are our top 5 boozy hot chocolate recipes for you to enjoy this winter.

  1. Orange Hot Chocolate

    A perfect flavour combination. There’s nothing quite as delicious as a chocolate, orange pairing!

chocolate orange hot chocolate recipe.jpg

The Orange Hot Chocolate - The Recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup milk

  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1 tablespoon Grand Marnier

Optional

  • Cinnamon sugar

  • Mini marshmallows

Instructions

  1. Add the milk, cocoa powder, brown sugar, and cinnamon stick to a small saucepan on medium heat. Whisk until the ingredients are combined. Heat it until it starts to gently bubble, stirring it occasionally.

  2. Whisk in the vanilla extract and Grand Marnier. Leave it on the heat for another minute or two to ensure it's heated through.

  3. Top with marshmallows and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar if desired.

Recipe by: BBC Good Food


2. Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate

boozy salted caramel hot chocolate recipe


Boozy Hot Chocolate with Salted Caramel Whipped Cream - The Recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon water

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 3 cups whole milk

  • 6 oz bittersweet chocolate (chopped)

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/4 cup rum

Instructions

  1. Heat the sugar, water and salt over medium heat in a saucepan until the sugar is dissolved.

  2. Allow the sugar to continue cooking, keeping a close eye on it, until it starts to turn golden brown.

  3. Once it begins to caramelize, it will begin to darken quickly. Let the sugar get as dark as possible without burning for best results.

  4. Once the caramel is a dark amber color, remove the pan from the heat and pour the heavy cream carefully down the side of the pan. The caramel will splatter before temporarily seizing up, so be very careful to avoid burns.

  5. Move the pan back onto the burner, and use a heatproof spatula to stir the caramel and cream until evenly combined.

  6. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, stirring periodically.

  7. Pour the caramel into a clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic against the surface to prevent a skin from forming.

  8. Allow to chill until very cold (several hours or overnight).

  9. Once cold, use a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk the caramel cream until it reaches medium peaks. Set aside.

  10. In a medium saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat. When the milk is steaming hot, but not yet simmering, remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes until the chocolate has melted. Whisk in the vanilla and rum. If needed, return the hot chocolate to the heat until desired temperature is reached.

  11. Pour into mugs, and top each with a dollop of whipped cream.

Recipe By: The Gourmet Kitchen

Image Credit: HonestlyYUM


3. Boozy S’mores Hot Chocolate

boozy smores hot chocolate.jpg

S’mores Hot Chocolate - The Recipe:

Ingredients

2 ¼ Pinnacle whipped vodka
2 ounces Godiva chocolate liqueur
2 ounces Hiram Walker butterscotch schnapps
6 ounces hot chocolate
Graham cracker garnish
Marshmallow garnish
Chocolate garnish

Directions

1. In a large mason jar, coffee mug, or teacup, mix the Pinnacle whipped vodka, Godiva chocolate liqueur, Hiram Walker butterscotch schnapps and hot chocolate together.

2. Stir well.

3. Garnish with toasted marshmallows, graham cracker pieces, and shaved chocolate, and serve.

Recipe by: DrinkWire


Love these recipes? Share them, so your friends can have warm hands this winter too!

We love comments, so let us know what you think of these below! Better yet, try them at home and show us your pics of your creations!

Veuve Clicquot Event - Langdon Hall - Cambridge, ON

Langdon Hall, pool party and cocktails. What's not to love!?

It's not everyday that you are invited to a Veuve Clicquot pool party. We were so happy when Langdon Hall asked us to help with the lounge areas, lighting and DJ for this event. Plus, I got to attend this as a guest too, which was pretty spectacular!

The Cocktails - Veuve Clicquot Rich

Veuve Clicquot Rich at Langdon Hall

Why Veuve Clicquot Rich?

Veuve Rich was specifically designed for mixing. It's high sugar content, brings sweetness to a mixed drink, taking away the need for simple syrups or other sweeteners. But don't believe me, go to Langdon Hall and ask their sommelier, Faye all about it! 

Now, without further ado, the drink list:

The ACTUAL Veuve Cocktails
 

1. Easy Pour Wine Bar - Jonny Kirwin

Easy Pour - Langdon Hall Veuve Pool Party

*This cocktail was delicious. Jonny spent days making the concentrated juice that went into this and it really showed. The Jasmine was a lovely touch and the drink was super refreshing!

Drink Name: Rags to Riches

Ingredients: Veuve Clicquot Rich, Watermelon, Pomegranate, Lemongrass, Jasmine Tea, Fresh Basil, Lime Juice

2. Black Dog - Lucas Frawley

Langdon Hall Cambridge Events

*Rose water really made this cocktail special for me. There's something about the floral aroma that I really love. Plus, it doesn't get much more luxurious than sipping on a rose petal drink beside the pool at Langdon Hall.

Drink Name: The Marrakech

Ingredients: Veuve Clicquot Rich, Cassis Monna & Filles, Mighty Leaf Organic Mint Melange Tea, Rose Water, Fresh Mint & Black Berry, Rose Petals

3. Langdon Hall - Aaron Hatchell

Langdon Hall Pool

*Super refreshing and light. I loved the cranberry ice cubes in this drink. As the cubes melted, the mint came to life and made the drink even more interesting!

Drink Name: Veuve2

Ingredients: Veuve Clicquot Rich, Hibiscus, Wild Cranberry Ice Cubes with Mint, Shaved Cucumber

4. Red House 

Lime and Veuve Cocktail

*I didn't end up getting the name of the drink for red house. It was the first one I had and I was so excited to be there that I missed it! It was a savory cocktail, which was such a treat!*

Ingredients: Veuve Clicquot Rich, Organic Thai Basil, Curry Oil, Dehydrated Lime Wedge

The Langdon Hall Pool Atmosphere

I loved everything about this event. The music was pumping (thanks to our very own Kyle Priestley), the weather cooperated, the guests were having a great time, the food and service by Langdon was spectacular. There really was nothing more you could have asked for! 

Take a look at the photos below:

Plus, they were giving out Veuve Clicquot Rich sunglasses and I got to wear orange! Cheers everyone! Hopefully we'll get to do this again soon!

PS...notice how my hair is getting curly here. Oh the summer heat! You curly haired ladies and gents know how I feel! 

Carolina Soares Langdon Hall Pool Party

Now, go check out all the amazing restaurants that were featured!

Plus, don't forget to follow and like us to keep up with everything we're doing:

Awesome Cocktails in a Skinny Glass! Perfect for a wedding, or any event, really. Cheers!

Awesome Cocktails in a Skinny Glass! Perfect for a wedding, or any event, really. Cheers!

I love these glasses for cocktails with friends, dinner parties or even cocktail hour at your wedding if it is an option.  The glass is interesting enough that a simple granish is enough to finish off a pu-together look!