Thanksgiving 2010 Holiday recipe round-up

Barefoot Contessa's Roasted Shrimp Cocktail We're moving the week before Thanksgiving, so I anticipate the first meals in our new home to be served on paper plates atop cardboard boxes.

I could care less!

We're moving into a great little house with a spacious backyard, an adorable side porch, and a fireplace! As long as the fireplace is crackling, I'm good. 

But, I realize the rest of the world is scrambling for menu ideas. 

Me too, even if I'm not going to go crazy trying to have everything in place day of.

Still, a woman can dream about the next big meal, the one where she's made that fab recycled wood table from ReadyMade, and everyone is gathered together to count their blessings.   And on the table a beautiful glistening browned bird. 

Oh, the sumptuous sides. Oh, the delicious desserts. Oh the stories we'll tell. 

Heres'a holiday recipe round-up for making your own nostalgic moments.

Photo courtesy of The Food Network

PAMA Lava Lamp heats up Valentine's Day

Pama Lava Lamp So you're looking to heat things up this Valentine's Day.

Pick up a bottle of bubbly and PAMA Pomengranate Liqueur, then add this terrific recipe from Maria Hunt's The Bubbly Bar.

PAMA (which makes a great cupcake ingredient too) is made with all-natural pomegranate juice, premium vodka and a touch of imported tequila. Bottled at just 34 proof, PAMA is highly mixable and makes mixing up a love potion pretty easy.

Love potion number nine is The Lava Lamp. It's explosive.

The Lava Lamp

1 oz. PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur

5 oz. Brut Sparkling Wine

3 pomegranate seeds

Add PAMA to a champagne flute.

Fill the glass with sparkling wine.

Drop in the pomegranate seeds

Dubonnet cocktails inspire magic of French Riviera

 Do you Dubonnet? If you don't, then you should.Bring some of the magic of the French Riviera to your next party 

Make something magical at your next brunch, dinner or celebration with cocktails inspired by Dubonnet aperitifs.

Dubbonnet aperitifs have been anticipating good things to come since 1845 when Parisian chemist and wine merchant Joseph Dubonnet created this exceptional aperitif.

Originally, created to make quinine more palatable for Foreign Legionnaires battling malaria in North Africa, the French aperitif with the storied past has been preparing the palate with its mix of fortified wine, a proprietary blend of herbs, spices and peels, and medicinal quinine.

Derived from the Latin, aperio, meaning to uncover or lay bare, aperitifs are consumed to open the palate, to prepare the appetite for a meal. Dubonnet, one of the many different styles of aperitif, is part of a special class of  aromatized wines or fortified wines that flavored with herbs, roots, flowers, barks and other botanicals.

In the world of sophisticated drinks and mixology, Dubonnet is legendary.  Bring the flavor of the French Riviera to your next gathering with this crisply, aromatic recipe and make your own legend.

adapted from Dubonnet recipes

The Riviera

1 1/2 ounce Dubonnet Rouge

1/2 ounce Grand Marnier

1 ounce freshly squeezed blood orange juice

Add all the ingredients to a shaker half-filled with ice. Shake well and strain into a chilled five-ounce martini glass. Garnish with an orange slice.

Get in the spirit of Halloween with Crystal Head Vodka

Try a Crystal Head Cranium This year use your head and embrace the spirit of Halloween with Crystal Head Vodka for your witch’s brew.

Inspired by his long-time fascination with ghosts, spirits, and other unworldly presences, as well as his interest in the legend of the 13 Crystal Skulls, screen legend Dan Aykroyd has created Crystal Head Vodka. This super-premium vodka is quadruple distilled and then triple crystal-filtered through Herkimer diamonds, which are said to emit positive energy.

Try Dan Aykroyd’s favorite cocktail for Halloween - The Cranium

Yield one serving


1 ½ oz. Crystal Head Vodka

4 ounces Cranberry juice

1 splash Grenadine


Pour Crystal Head Vodka and cranberry juice over ice in a tall glass.

Add a splash of grenadine (unstirred) on the top. -

Garnish with blood orange slice.

Lullwater Third Wednesdays in Prospect Park

Chill at Lullwater Lounge tonight

Lullwater Lounge launches this week at Prospect Park's Picnic House. This relaxed happy hour is set for Wednesday, Oct. 21, from 6:30-9 pm. Enjoy an open bar (!) and the chance to sit back and enjoy the scenic view in Brooklyn's only forest.

Cost: $20 in advance, per person. $25 at the door, per person.

Admission includes drinks and snacks.

Bring a friend and bring some games. Every Third Wednesday.

For more information, visit:

Grab a classic cocktail at The Sackett Bar

The Sackett (661 Sackett Street between 4th and 5th Avenues, Brooklyn, 718.622.0437), site of the defunct Latin American Cafe, is now open.

Drop in and try their signature cocktail - The Sackett, a blend of Johnny Walker Red, Amaretto, Cointreau, and a dash of orange bitters.

Owners and native New Yorkers Ann Jhun and Michael Ragolia have years of experience in the NY bar, club and music scene.

Jhun worked as a cocktail waitress and bartender at NY’s Limelight and Tunnel nightclubs during her college days. then worked behind the scenes after graduation in promotions at clubs such as Life and Cheetah Club.

At 23, Ann was hired as Speed nightclub’s Director of Promotions where she handled advertising, market analysis and PR in addition to promotions. More recently, Jhun was Director of Sales & Marketing at City, a national luxury lifestyle magazine.

Ragolia has over 8 years of experience in the music industry. As a college student, Michael worked at Matador records in marketing/distribution capacity.

Additionally, he worked as a buyer for two of New York City’s music destination shops, Kim’s Music and Video on the West Village and Sound and Fury on the Lower East Side, where he hand-selected the product from over ten national distributors. Michael is currently a City Planner.

The new Park Slope bar specializes in classic cocktails, wines and craft beers. And there's a daily Happy Hour so you can get your lush on until 7 pm with $4 pints and well drinks, $1 off all beers and rotating cocktail specials.

The Sackett’s kitchen will open in November serving oven-toasted sandwiches and appetizers.

Here's a sneak peek at their upcoming bar menu:

Oven Toasted Sliders

served with organic kettle chips

  • -Roast beef, cheddar, sauteed onion and horseradish on a club roll
  • -Prosciutto, gorgonzola cream and pear on a ciabatta roll
  • -Brie, spinach and walnuts on a ciabatta roll
  • -Turkey, cranberry chutney and pepper jack on a club roll
  • -Ham, swiss, pickle and peppercorn mayo on a club roll

served with ground white corn chips

  •  -Spinach yogurt
  • -Creamy artichoke
  • -Spicy Red lentil


  • Income Tax – Hendricks, dry and sweet vermouth, OJ, Angostura bitters
  • Mrs. Alexander – Hennessy, dark Crème de Cacao, milk, nutmeg
  • The Sackett – Johnny Walker Red, Amaretto, cointreau, dash orange bitters
  • Southern Apple – Bulleit, Apple Liquer
  • Perfect Pair – Grey Goose Pear, St. Germain, fresh lime, soda

Hours: Open Mon – Thurs 4 pm – 1 am, Fri 4 pm – 3 am, Sat 2 pm – 3 am, Sun 2 pm – 1 am


Candy Apple Chambord Martini a real treat

Candied apple cocktail

Give the grown-ups a treat this Halloween.

While the kids fill their loot bags and bob for apples, the big kids get their own nostalgic treat - a candy apple martini.

Chambord Candy Apple Martini

1 oz Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur
1 oz Finlandia Vodka
3/4 oz apple schnapps

Splash of Tuaca Liqueur

Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a martini
glass. Rim the glass with caramel and garnish with an apple slice.

'True Blood' inspired Halloween cocktail

A truly ghoulish and delicious Vampire Kiss

I vant to drink your blood. But good manners suggest settling for a potent cocktail of another kind.

True Blood's Sookie Stackhouse might offer her undead guests a little Vampire Kiss to take the edge off the evening on Halloween. 

This berry-flavored sparkling Martini made with Finlandia vodka, Chambord and Korbel Champagne makes for a ghoulish good time for guests.

Vampire Kiss Martini

Serves one

1 ½ oz. Finlandia Vodka, chilled
1 ½ oz Korbel Champagne
¾ oz part Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur

Rim an oversized chilled Martini glass with red sugar (use food coloring to mix your own) or drop in a set of wax vampire teeth for a real surprise.

Pour vodka and half of the Chambord in the Martini glass, top with Champagne and pour the remaining Chambord over the back of a spoon to make it float.