I love a little reminder of warmer weather in the middle of winter, so I created a tropical holiday mash-up filled with color and pizazz. A party complete with a floral tree, cocktails inspired by two of my new favorite La Croix Curate flavors, and a few tasty appetizers. And after you’ve had a few sips of the two delicious cocktail recipes I am about to share, you will brushing off the winter chill and ready to party tropical style.
Follow along as I share the recipes for a unique and delicious holiday soiree.
First up let’s talk about the star of any party. That would be the cocktails of course! I decided to work with two flavors of La Croix Curate, the pomme baya and the melon pomelo. The melon pomelo flavor was transformed into a tropical greyhound with the addition of a cantaloupe simple syrup, and the pomme baya was combined with vanilla simple syrup, cranberry juice, and bourbon for the tastiest holiday spritzer ever!
- 3 Tablespoons cantaloupe simple syrup (recipe below)
- 1 Shot Grapefruit Juice
- 1 Shot Ruby Red grapefruit vodka
- La Croix Curate Melon Pomelo
Fill a highball glass with ice, add the first three ingredients and then fill with the La Croix Melon Pomelo. Stir to combine and garnish with a wood skewer topped with cantaloupe balls and a pink grapefruit wedge.
Cantaloupe simple syrup
- 1 part chopped dried cantaloupe (the sugary kind from the bulk food section of the grocery store)
- 4 parts water
Simmer the water with the cantaloupe until the water reduces by half. Blend the mixture into a puree and then strain out any remaining cantaloupe pieces. The remaining mixture is the cantaloupe simple syrup for your cocktail.
Apple, Cranberry, and Vanilla Bourbon Spritzer
- 1 shot bourbon
- 1 shot cranberry juice cocktail
- 2 Tbsp. vanilla simple syrup (recipe below)
- La Croix Pomme Baya
Add the first three ingredients to a rocks glass then fill with the La Croix Pomme Baya. Stir gently to mix and add a few fresh cranberries as garnish.
Vanilla Simple Syrup Recipe
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 Tbsp Vanilla bean paste (or full vanilla bean split open and seeds removed and added to the syrup
Combine all the ingredients in a sauce pan and simmer until the sugar just dissolves. Cool and use as the vanilla simple syrup for your cocktail.
Now that the drinks are taken care of, we need some appetizers! I wanted to play off both the flavors of the La Croix curate that I used for the cocktails as well as the tropical vibe of the party, so I created simple grilled pineapple and mozzarella bites and an apple, cranberry, and mango topped baked brie.
Pineapple Mozzarella Bites
- Rosemary Skewers (optional, but gives a festive touch)
- Grilled sliced pineapple
- Small bite sized fresh mozzarella
- Balsamic vinaigrette reduction
Simple skewer bite sized pieces of pineapple and mozzarella onto the rosemary skewers and then drizzle with the balsamic reduction. To make the reduction, simmer balsamic vinaigrette over low heat until it forms a thick glaze (about 15 minutes).
- 1/2 cup chopped apple
- 1/4 cup chopped mango
- 1/4 cup fresh cranberries
- 1/4 cup almonds
- 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 Tablespoon butter, melted
- Brie round
- Bread bowl (I found the perfect cranberry, mango, and almond bread at my local grocery store)
Combine all ingredients except the bread bowl and brie. Cut a circle in the bread the size of the brie and insert the brie into the bread bowl. Top with the fruit mixture and bake at 350°F for 12-15 minutes. Top with toasted coconut if desired and serve with the extra bread.
Now that you are thirsty and hungry, let’s talk about the decorations for a second. To really bring in the tropical vibe for my party, I used my white Christmas tree and added in stems of faux flowers in various shades of pink, orange, and peach. A few paper monstera leaves cut with my vinyl cutter and the DIY swan and flamingo pool float ornaments I made added to the tropical vibe of the tree.
Over at the bar there is a tropical winter white wreath, a few bottle brush trees, and the prettiest ombre pink candles in my new favorite gold and white candle holders.
So there you have it, the best summer in winter, tropical holiday party ever. I mean I don’t think there is a way you can see this and not want to bust out the La Croix and flowers and party like it’s not snowing outside.