Holiday Party BYOB Questions Solved

The holiday party invites are streaming in and if you are young and frugal like the rest of us, many of the hosts encourage BYOB.  Sure, you can go with your regular go to bottle but we encourage you to push the envelope here at TomCookery.  Below are our top pics for brown baggers at this season’s holiday parties.  Good luck in actually letting go of these gems!

Hangar 1 Vodka- Unbelievably smooth vodka which is apparently made from viognier grapes.  Go figure!  You may never try another vodka again.

Hendricks (Gin)-I lean towards gin in the summer.  This summer was a scorcher in NYC and I pretty much gave up all other alcohol for the cucumber and rose cooling effect of Hendricks.  I do think that gin makes a fine winter drink as well.  A French 75 screams holiday party cocktail to me.

Don Julio Reposado (Tequila)- Many a boozy night at the tequila bar has started (and ended) with Don Julio Reposado.  I definitely prefer this to some of the more popular (ahem) varieties that frequent hip hop stations.

Knob Creek (Bourbon)- Sometimes, I like my liquor to drink like a meal.  On nights like that, I opt for bourbon.  I’ve tried a few but Knobb Creek always rises to the top.

Bruichladdich 10 Year Old -The Laddie Ten (Scotch)- We had a party this summer where this scotch was on the menu.  One of our bartenders made me a drink at the end of the night and I was shocked that it was scotch.  Even more shocked that I liked it.  I’d always associated scotch with old men but the Laddie made me a believer.

Domaine de Canton- This french ginger liqueur has the potential to elevate some of the most mundane cocktails.  If you are a ginger lover like me you will have a ball with this. Peruse the website for drink ideas or rely on your imagination.  The possibilities are endless.




Barbados Bound

Written at 12:00pm 11/21/13.

I’m headed “home” to Barbados for the Food Wine and Rum Festival and I couldn’t be more thrilled to marry the country where I lived as a child and my recent career change into catering.  I will always have an inherent bias towards Barbados.  My grandparents, Walter and Lorna live here.  My dad, Tony, recently moved back.  I lived here for about half my life as a kid.  I grew up dancing to calypso, sucking on bar-be-cue pig tails, begging for swigs of Banks beer on my father’s lap and reminding my American mother that, “I is a ba-jun!”


Everyone who is anyone in Barbados takes pride that a major part of the culture here revolves around eating, drinking and partying.  As a child, I felt like the Burke Residence was the epicenter of that culture, to Gatsby-esque proportions.  Entertaining is in my blood.  This is also why I wasn’t surprised that Food & Wine chose Barbados as a destination for the festival.  I can’t wait to see how this weekend highlights the best of Bajan culture.  Reminds me of a little something we at TomCookery like to call New Comfort Cuisine.


Eat, Drink and Be Merry,


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