That’s it. Summer’s coming to an end. School supply sections are being ransacked. Pools are being abandoned. Boots are slowly being pulled out of the back of the closet. Use this long Labor Day weekend as a time to toast to the end of the season with fruity and refreshing libations. Celebrity caterer Andrea Correale shares her favorite end-of-summer cocktail recipes that are sure to send you into fall in good spirits.
End of Summer Sangria
2 bottles dry white wine
1 cup triple sec
1/2 cup berry-flavored vodka
1/2 cup freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup simple syrup
1 cup blueberries
1 1/2 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 cup raspberries
1 1/2 cups pineapple chunks (optional: use star-shaped cookie cutter to cut out patriotic shapes)
To make the simple syrup, boil 1/2 cup water and add 1/2 cup granulated white sugar. Turn heat to simmer and stir until dissolved. Turn off heat and let cool.
Combine all ingredients in a large punch bowl or pitcher, and stir well. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours. Serve well-chilled with a good scoop of fruit floating in each drink, or serve over ice.
THREE MORE RECIPES TO TRY!
If her irreverent personality and great fashion sense weren’t enough to make you love Nicole Richie, just look at her backyard:
When she’s not acting or designing pieces for her House of Harlow collection, she loves to entertain outdoors at the Laurel Canyon, Calif. home she shares with husband and Good Charlotte frontman Joel Madden, daughter Harlow, 5, and son Sparrow, 3.
She can’t stand the b-word (bohemian, that is), so she designed the outdoor space with a “relaxed and eclectic vibe” in mind. Richie unveiled the newly-revamped space to Domaine Home at a recent dinner party. It’s a stunning mix of classic outdoor elements (like natural stone) paired with modern touches like mismatched, industrial metal chairs. See the entire space here >>
On her backyard color palette: “It was important to me to keep the color palette strong but not too overpowering. We’re all about having everything be really eclectic and relaxed.” She settled on turquoise, yellow and black as a unifying colorway for her.
On dinner party seating charts: “I’m against assigned seating. I like people to come to my house and feel like they can do whatever they want.”
On her design aesthetic: “My house has that summery look and feel all year round…luckily for me I live in LA and can get away with it.”
On her home: “Our house is the one people come to, to hang.”
Nicole, feel free to invite me over anytime! Photos by Justin Coit for Domaine Home
So, you’re throwing a “sayonara to summer” party this Labor Day weekend. You probably have ice, fruit and salsa ingredients on your list, but what about the key components like set-up, atmosphere and activities? It doesn’t need to be stressful and complicated, but there are a few essentials or extras (see: lounging poolside) to keep in mind before inviting friends and family over.
Dining: Places to Sit When You’re Not Being a Social Butterfly
MORE: 13 Party-Ready Outdoor Spaces
THROW THE PERFECT LABOR DAY PARTY
There’s nothing better on a hot summer day than some delicious, cold ice cream. It just so happens the time we most want this decadent treat is also the time we most want to fit into our bathing suits. That poses a problem. Luckily, this fantastic Yonanas ice cream maker gives us the taste of ice cream without those pesky excess calories. Just put in frozen bananas or other frozen fruits, and it makes fresh, sweet soft serve. And it’s actually good for you!
WANT MORE COOL TREATS? CHECK OUT THESE YUMMY COCKTAIL RECIPES>>
Would you ever consider staying a night in a giant sand castle? What about a hotel made entirely of ice? It might sound odd, but these extraordinary hotels truly do exist. From a hotel of survival pods in Holland to a hotel made out of sewage pipe in Austria, the world is full of interesting places to stay. So before you book your next trip, why not look into enjoying one of these unique experiences?
Poseidon Undersea Resort, Figi
Cave Hotel, Turkey
MORE BEAUTIFUL HOTELS:
Gluten-free food has been a major conversation for some time now. And now that the Food and Drug Administration has set a standard for what it takes for food to be considered gluten-free, I did a little investigating. I set out to find gluten-free recipes that would actually taste good, too. It’s no fun giving up delicious foods you love, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that people on a gluten-free diet can still enjoy most of their favorite foods, including gluten-free cookies, zucchini bread, pizza, oatmeal and even cupcakes! Yum!
MORE GLUTEN-FREE OPTIONS THAT MIGHT SURPRISE YOU:
August is National Peach Month (yup!), and we’re starting out the celebration — and the weekend — with peachy concoctions that are the perfect mix of sweet and tangy. In several parts of the country peaches are now in season, so stock up and start shaking … or stirring.
Fuzzy Naval Crush
2 ounces Van Gogh Cool Peach Vodka
1 ounce triple sec
splash of orange juice
splash of soda water
mint, for garnish
Combine all ingredients in a pint glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with mint.
Berry Peach Lemonade
More Cocktail Recipes After the Jump
I recently visited The Swag Resort, a mountaintop getaway near Asheville, N.C. In addition to the breathtaking mountain views, rustic suites and direct Smoky Mountain National Park access, the resort also features upscale cuisine inspired by its geography: Think smoked Tennessee mountain trout, pot roast with burgundy sauce and apple-raisin bread pudding with Bourbon caramel sauce. Yum!
Swag Chef Ronnie Potter-Bowers, a North Carolina native, mixes his French culinary training with dishes he picked up in his grandmother’s Southern kitchen. Many of her recipes are on display at the resort’s weekly Thursday night barbecue.
Here, he puts the finishing touches on a barbecued pork butt, soon to be the melt-in-your mouth pulled pork on the plate featured above.
Ready to host your own summer barbecue? We’ve got a menu full of recipes from The Swag, including Ronnie’s signature pulled pork, potato salad and the resort’s famous peanut-butter-and-chocolate Swag Bars. Believe me — you don’t want to miss this.
GET THE FULL MENU + RECIPES
Halloween may still be months away but that doesn’t mean I can’t tempt you with a few of the devilishly delicious treats we’re cooking up now. Our entertaining pros are busy whipping up both sweet and savory party snacks your Halloween guests won’t be able to resist!
Here’s a small sampling; I’ll share the actual recipes when we get closer to All Hallows Eve. In the meantime, check out our Halloween feature for more spooky inspiration:
MORE HALLOWEEN IDEAS:
Halloween Sneak Peek: Outdoor Decorating Ideas
Halloween Sneak Peek: Kids’ Costumes
4 Halloween Crafts to Make Now
Halloween Cut-Outs: Spook Up Your Yard
Crafty Indoor Halloween Decorations
Free! Halloween Printables
Home Survival Skills: Prepare Your Home for Halloween
How to Make a Fall Felt Leaf Wreath
It seems like just last week the school year was coming to an end, yet somehow, the start of the new school year is just around the corner. Our friends over at Paging Supermom are readily prepared and already planning a fabulous back-to-school party. Luckily, they’ve offered us an exclusive sneak peek at the Paging Supermom Back to School With Neon Party that will be unfolding on their blog all week.
More Party Decor