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Holiday Catering Guide: 14 Restaurants & Traditional Caterers who do it all!

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Entries in Cocktails (113)


Holiday Recipe: Autumn Old Fashioned by La Zingara in Bethel

Although we all love the Thanksgiving holiday, there comes a time in any family gathering where one simply requires a cocktail or two. La Zingara in Bethel is here to help you in your time of need with a classic drink. Their Autumn Old Fashioned cocktail recipe will drown out any trying relative, and just make the dinner that much better.  

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Sexy Cocktails Debut @ NoMa Social Lounge in New Rochelle

For decades, the locally owned Radisson in New Rochelle has been a beloved pillar of the lower Westchester community.  But sadly, the matriarch was getting a bit long in the tooth. So the family transformed her vibe from venerable to vogue, a Manhattan style Boutique Hotel.  

As one of the designers of that refurb, Colby Brock, the Food and Beverage manager, named the new restaurant and lounge NoMa Social (NoMa stands for “North of Manhattan” and bears no alliance with the renowned Noma in Copenhagen).  Colby brought in highly regarded Executive Chef Bill Rosenberg, (, Barcelona) to upgrade the kitchen, and she recently hired 32 year old Mike DeFalco as the Bar and Nightlife Manager.  A major mission: inject some hip to a ho-hum bar menu.

NoMa’s splashy lounge – replete with zebra stripes and a funky, deep house/electro trance playlist -- has become a hot spot for a young, party and pick-up crowd.  To add to the jump, DeFalco has set about creating a cavalcade of sexy craft cocktails.  


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Kawa Ni Announces New Happy Hour And Cocktail Menu

Kawa Ni, Westport's izakaya by the river, has been both a haven of Japanese-inspired food and a boisterous drinking scene since its opening just over a year ago. The party is about to start earlier, as Bill Taibe and co. have announced the debut of their new happy hour menu of food and drink at the Bridge Square, starting now.

Izakayas are small taverns which cater to the occasionally raucous after work set in Japan, so the new menu, with its focus on a limited number of small bar bites backed up by almost twice as many drinks, is right on theme. The prices of food and drink alike are sharply reduced for the happy hour, which runs Tuesday -Friday 4-6PM. 

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The WattyMelon Flip Flop Cocktail c/o Watsons Catering

Summer means cocktails – preferably accompanied by fresh fruit, flip flops and a not a care in the world. Watson’s Catering has a refreshing take utilizing RIPE, one of our favorite craft juices, called the Watty Melon Flip Flop that is sure to become one of your summer evening staples.

The WattyMelon Flip Flop Cocktail

Yield: 1 cocktail


½ shot glass of Tito’s vodka

1 shot RIPE margarita mix (lime sour)

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Guide to CT Wine & Spirit Shops for Summer 2015: Shaken, Stirred or Sipped

If there is one sound that can make you think of a hot summer day, it is the clink of ice in a big, tall glass. Ka-chink, clink, clink. Does a fizzy sound follow on the heels of those ka-chinks? Is there a ker-plop of a citrus wedge tumbling into that cool pool of refreshing, fizzy goodness? Ahhhh...and this is the sound that follows all of those...Ahhhh. Hello, icy cold craft beer, hello tart and tingly gin and tonic, hello creamy pina. It’s so nice to see you again.

To make you overflow with summer lovin’, we have found spirit shops around the state that will put the ka-chink-clink-clink in your future...

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“Pretty in Pink” Margarita Recipe: Grapefruit, Blood Orange & Hibiscus  

One of our favorite local foodies, Jen Spaide, is a mother, chef, writer and natural food & health advocate. She also does recipe development for Barcelona/ Bartaco and makes a darn fine cocktail. Tis that time of year, when all should be drinking margaritas. Fresh, bright and summery, with just a little bite, this "Pretty In Pink" Margarita recipe is a keeper. Enjoy!

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Kawa Ni Bartender Competition #1: Photo Gallery & Recap

Move over "show case showdown," there's a new showdown in town. Jeff Maron, bar manager of Kawa Ni in Westport (and both of the other Bill Taibe's jaunts) hosted the first of six Bartender Competitions where some of the North East's finest BAR-istas concocted some fabulous potions for the judges and guests to imbibe and describe. The goal of this event series is to showcase the art of the craft cocktail and elevate mixology in CT. 

Each 'tender was required to create 5 identical cocktails using one ounce of the sponsored ingredient - in this case, Appleton Reserve Rum, and one ounce of the secret ingredient - in this case Ancho Reyes chili liquor. Other than that, each drink-master was given free reign to embellish, add, adjust and design their signature cocktail. There was even some blow torching of fruit. The end game was to impress the panel of 4 judges, including the lucky winner of the CTBites cocktail naming contest, and Adam Roytman of Walrus and Carpenter (from whence many of the evening's delicious nibbles were provided).

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La Zingara in Bethel Launches a New Cocktail Program

Photo: La ZingaraLa Zingara in Bethel will launch a new cocktail program beginning April 1 with a menu spanning classic cocktails to their own crafted creations. The backbone of the new menu will be rooted in house made ingredients, including syrups, grenadine, fresh-squeezed juices, and (a handful of) bitters. In addition to the new cocktail program, Ecco Rooftop Eatery & Bar (located just above La Zingara) will reopen on April 1 as well.

"We are finally bringing La Zingara up to par on the cocktails that we have been doing on the [Ecco] rooftop for a while now. We are looking to bring the same quality that we bring to our food. Clean, simple drinks that utilize what is in season. Twists on the classics," said Lisa Tassone, La Zingara and Ecco owner.

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The Rob Roy Cocktail: A Manhattan with a Kilt

When the winter doldrums set in, and the temperatures flirt with zero, I set my sights firmly on brown spirits. Whisky, not whiskey, to be exact. A dram will usually do the trick, but on occasion I like to sully that perfect spirit by making it the foundation of a Rob Roy cocktail.

If you can reconcile the fact that you’re meddling with the perfection that is scotch, with sweet vermouth and bitters, then you’ve found your perfect century-old cocktail. It’s essentially a Manhattan with a kilt, which is a fitting description seeing as it was created in New York’s Waldorf Astoria in 1894 for an opera based on the Scottish folk hero and outlaw Robert Roy MacGregor.

There is something about peated scotch and a roaring fire, but an unpeated or blended whisky for your Rob Roy will also do the trick.

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Holiday Flip Cocktail Recipe via Sean Nye of Match in SoNo

Looking for the perfect Holiday Cocktail recipe for your festivities? Sean Nye has mixed up a little something special for CTbites, from his new post, behind the bar of Match in South Norwalk. 

Sean hails most recently from Walrus & Carpenter, as well as Bodega and South End in New Canaan. Jusy sayin...the man knows how to make a drink. 

Enjoy this truly delicious recipe for the "Holiday Flip" made with Applejack Brandy, cardamaro and nutmeg. And if you're simply too tired from opening presents, just go order one at Match.

Holiday Flip Cocktail Recipe

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