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Friday = Cocktail Time

cocktail board

Today is the last day of “Cocktails & Cupcakes” bridal shower details and recipes.

What better note to end a week on than cocktails!?!

We’ll start with the recipes and end with a fun decor item that the mother of the bride, Laura, her sister, Mary, and I created.

the bar

These following two cocktails come from The Bar Book Elements of Cocktail Techniques by Jeffery Morgenthaler with Martha Holmberg. Martha taught a modern sauces class at Les Gourmettes last month and I was the happy recipient of this bar book.

tom collins

Tom Collins

  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) gin
  • 3/4 ounce (1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons) fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounces (1 tablespoon) simple syrup*
  • Ice cubes
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) chilled soda water
  • 1 lemon peel for garnish


Combine the gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker or mixing glass. Shake with ice cubes and the soda water to the contents of the shaker.

Strain into chilled Collins glass filled with fresh ice cubes. Twist the peel over the surface of the cocktail (to release the natural oils) and drop in the drink to serve.

Serves 1

*Simple Syrup: Mix equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan, gently heat while stirring to dissolve the sugar, and promptly remove from the heat once the sugar is dissolved. Do not let the syrup boil, as this will evaporate the water and change the ratio of water to sugar.

Simple syrup may be kept in a sterilized jar for up to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.

old fashioneds

 Maple Old-Fashioned

  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) Canadian whisky
  • 1 teaspoon maple simple syrup**
  • 2 dashes Aromatic Bitters 
  • Large ice cubes
  • A wide swath of lemon peel for garnish

old fashioned

Combine the whisky, maple simple syrup, and bitters in a mixing glass and stir with ice cubes. Strain over fresh ice cubes into a chilled old-fashioned glass. Twist the peel over the surface of the cocktail (to release the natural oils) then rub the rim of the glass with the peel, and drop in the drink to serve.

Serves 1

** Maple Simple Syrup: Stir together 2 parts maple syrup (grade B is preferable) with 1 part water until well combined.

Maple simple Syrup may be kept in a sterilized jar for up to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.

Here are the other two drinks I served at Megan’s Cocktails & Cupcakes bridal shower:

moscow mule

Moscow Mule


Rojo Sangria


One last detail of the shower that I’d love to share is this vintage-inspired canvas backdrop I found on Antique Farm House, which is one of my favorite online shopping sites.

I asked Laura, Megan’s mom, to bring photos of Megan and her fiancé, Garett. I also provided Mary, Megan’s aunt, with chalkboard paper, templates, and chalk pens and asked her to create cutouts with significant dates and with fun or famous love and marriage quotes.

canvas door

Then we pinned it all to the backdrop … for this fun and festive decor.

All the bridal showers and upcoming weddings are getting me geared up for Marissa’s October nuptials. It’s a beautiful and exciting time.

Here’s to a glorious weekend!

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1 Nancy H { 02.13.15 at 10:49 AM }

Ooh, I haven’t had a Tom Collins in a very long time! It sounds just right for a Saturday that will be in the 8Os.

2 Lori Vento { 02.14.15 at 5:02 PM }

What a beautiful memory you gave to your dear friends and their daughter. Has to make you super-excited for the coming months and the joy of doing this for your own beautiful daughter. Thanks so much for sharing all! Xoxo

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