1. Involve Friends
Gabbert and Avery tap their network of ambitious home-chef friends to help with pre-party prep. "It makes the party more fun and participatory," says Gabbert. "We do a lot of orchestrated potlucks."
2. Go Intergenerational
3. Be Informal
4. Curate an Eclectic Playlist
An iPod loaded with a wide variety of songs keeps ears intrigued and toes tapping. "We play a little of everything," says Gabbert. Some of her favorite artists include:
- Celia Cruz
- The Shins
- Tordd Gustavsen Trio
- Kronos Quartet
- Bon Iver
- The Flaming Lips
- Bill Evans
- Blind Pilot
- Nina Simone
5. Create Good Lighting
Avery suggests using fire indoors and electricity outdoors. Light candles or the fireplace, and string bistro lights or electric lanterns in the garden for sparkle.
6. Serve a Signature Drink
Whether it’s a favorite wine or a memorable cocktail, a house drink makes for a powerful party ritual. Here’s a Southern California variation on the Bootleg, a drink that was a Gabbert family standard when they lived in Minnesota.
Gabbert Gimlet (Makes 6)
- ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
½ cup fresh mint, plus extra for garnish
½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
½ to 1 cup superfine sugar
6 shots vodka or gin (Gabber uses Reyka Vodka or Broker’s Gin)
Club soda (Gabbert uses Gerolsteiner sparkling mineral water)
Puree parsley, mint, lime juice, and sugar in a blender until smooth. Fill six cocktail classes with ice and shots of vodka or gin. Divide pureed mixture between the six glasses.
Top each glass with a splash of club soda for a bit of saltiness. Stir and garnish with whole mint leaves.
TopicsHow-To & Guides
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