We know sometimes it can be all hustle and no flow. Rachel Mae Furman is Create & Cultivate's resident Leisure Expert, and our go-to girl for tips on cocktails, parties, and the art of entertaining. She'll regularly be serving up the best ways to mix and little business with pleasure. It's always Happy Hour somewhere, so we'll drink to that. —JM
The Traveling Round of Cocktails
by Rachel Mae Furman
Summer is upon us and that usually means lots of potlucks, BBQs, picnics and backyard parties. To which, of course, you should never show up empty handed. And while everyone else shows up with the standard bottle of rosé, why not show your host that you appreciate all of his or her efforts with a little something special?
Since I appreciate a good cocktail wherever I may be, I like to bring the bar with me. But I’m not talking tools, shakers, and mixers, or jello shots. I mean a good round of craft cocktails that's portable and ready to go. Here’s all you’ll need for a Traveling Round of Cocktails:
1) Choose Your Recipe
Anything from a citrus cocktail like a Vodka Lemonade to a stirred cocktail like an Old Fashioned or Negroni. Liquor.com or the Epicurious app are both great place to start for inspiration. It's best to skip a recipe that requires soda for this one, as bubbles don’t travel well (that said, you could always add a splash when you get there)!
2) Choose Your Vessel
Mason Jars are the way to go. You can pre-make each cocktail, screw on the lid for travel, add some ice when you get there and give it a good shake. It’s like your own individual cocktail shaker!
3) Choose Your Package
Invoke some serious wow factor when you show up to a party with a vintage mini suitcase and pop it open to reveal your round of drinks. Any decorative box or storage basket could do—once you’re thinking cocktails, take a peruse around Michael’s Crafts or Target and soon every box will start looking like a potential bar!
4) Keep It Cute
For extra credit, I cut a piece of cardboard the shape of my suitcase lid and spray-painted it with chalkboard paint to write my drink recipes on. You can also find cute mini-chalkboards online or at a craft store. Also consider custom print mason jar labels with your logo or an image for the occasion, and/or line the inside with a pretty kitchen towel in a coordinating color. While everyone else shows up with the ninth bottle of rosé for the evening, revel in your hostess magic as you offer them a cocktail from your suitcase!
Added Value: Here's my go-to recipe for a Peach Negroni
Negroni Pesca (“Peach Negroni”)
1oz Gin (I like Art in the Age SAGE Gin for this one)
1oz Suze Liqueur
1oz Lillet Rosé
3 Dashes Peach Bitters
Stir all ingredients together with ice, garnish with a grapefruit peel, and enjoy!
Rachel Mae Furman is a self-proclaimed “Leisure Expert" on a quest to elevate moments, create occasions and curate experiences at any given moment. She has spent the last decade traveling the country scouring the back roads and small towns of America for inspiration, then jet-setting from city to city on the corporate dime, building booze brands in the liquor business. Inspired by her Grandmom Doris to be the perfect little hostess, Rachel is known for whipping out a mason jar Old Fashioned from her purse just when you need it. Her blog Smoke & Honey celebrates the art of leisure, from cocktails to entertaining, style to homemaking. Follow her @rachelmaefurman.