Tis the season for entertaining, but between the shopping, wrapping and decorating we are all short on time. If you remember, last year Amos Gott created a beautiful cocktail party for us using only ingredients from Costco. This year, I was inspired to create my own cocktail party, but I wanted to make sure I could take care of every detail in one afternoon. I’m following his lead and am keeping my shopping to two nearby stores, Savi Provisions and Trader Joe’s, where I can purchase everything I’ll need.
I’m going to serve a charcuterie platter, and Savi Provisions will be my first stop for the ingredients. If you have not visited a location of this locally-owned store, you must go soon. They stock all sorts of ready-made salads, pantry staples, cheese and meats, not to mention a huge selection of alcohol. It makes pulling off a quick cocktail party really easy.
Savi has a great selection of cheeses from all over the world, and even some from Georgia. I like that their knowledgeable staff can offer suggestions so the finished plate includes a variety of both soft and hard cheeses.
Savi’s equally great selection of cured meats will help me round out this appetizer. They also have baguettes on hand. A quick slice-up of the bread and the addition of some crackers from their pantry section and the platter will be complete.
In the freezer section, Savi also stocks easy pick-up items like these Callie’s Biscuits. All I will have to do is warm them in the oven right before the party starts and place them on a platter.
And for dessert, Savi has a selection of individual cakes in a few different delicious flavors.
Right next door, Savi Provisions has a HUGE stock of every imaginable wine, liquor, and beer. The picture below only captures about a third of the space. And while large, everything is neatly organized and the staff is very helpful in picking out whatever you need and carrying it to your car.
To make the bar set up easy (and to save some money), keeping the drink offerings simple is best—perhaps wine, champagne and one mixed drink. Here are two recipes from the StyleBlueprint archives that are easy to make for a crowd that I’m considering for my party:
Next stop is Trader Joe’s, the land of cheap and easy options for feeding a crowd. Their dinner rolls and spiral ham are perfect for a casual cocktail gathering.
Trader Joe’s frozen aisle has a number of easy pick-up and heat items perfect for a party. Here are a few favorites that will be in my freezer, ready to pop in the oven:
And since we can’t forget desserts, here are a few of our favorite Trader Joe’s desserts that we highlighted last year:
Even with the house decked to the nines, adding some fresh flowers to the table is always a nice finishing touch, even for a casual party. Since Trader Joe’s has a great selection of inexpensive flowers, I’ll purchase mine here, too.
So, now that my easy list is made and I don’t have to stress about the details, all that’s left is picking a date in the next week or two to host our friends for some holiday cheer. (I’ll keep you posted on how the party turns out!)