Celebrate Summer with Porch Parties: Cocktail Recipes & Easy Ideas for Outdoor Entertaining

The summer goes by so quickly. 

Before you know it, it's Fall, the kids are back in school and the heavy coats and wool tights come out. So celebrate the season with Porch Parties: Cocktail Recipes & Easy Ideas for Outdoor Entertaining by Denise Gee.

This is more than just drinks on a porch. It's about, as Denise says, "the joy of architecture and neighbourly camaraderie." Doesn't that sound good right about now? No running errands, no cleaning the bathroom - just getting together with friends and family.

Denise lives in Dallas, but she writes, "But what really shaped my design aesthetic was being raised in one of Mississippi’s most beautiful, historic and hospitable cities: Natchez. It was there, growing up downtown in a four-story Victorian house/clothing store owned by my mother and grandmother—and being a young docent at several antebellum houses—that I learned the joy of cooking, entertaining, storytelling, architecture, interior decorating and garden design.

It's true that there's something instantly relaxing about a porch. I think it's that no one works out on the porch - it's where you talk and commune and you automatically unwind and decompress like you would on vacation.  

So in order to throw your own Porch Party, Denise gives you some great pointers like planning your buffet, how to stock the bar, garnish ideas and even includes a handy (and extensive) checklist.

And you're going to love her drink ideas - Blood Orange Martini, Prosecco Mojito and something called a Gumby Slumber. For these truly sweltering days, cooling off is easy with Denise's Watermelon Cooler, Blackberry Smash and a fascinating drink called the Michelada that calls for beer, hot sauce and soy sauce.

I love her "Punch" section and learned so much - for example, that Punch should have "at least three but preferably five ingredients and serve a boatload of people (or at least a small crowd)." And doesn't Lemon Sherbet, Ice Ring Finesse and Bourbon Slush Punch sound good right about now?

There is also a ton of non-alcoholic offerings, or as Denise calls 'em, Frocktails, as well as little bites to offer along with the drinks (you don't want the neighbours falling off the porch) such as Greek Crostini, Shrimp & Tomato Salad and Creamy Orange Fruit Dip.

Whether you live in a condo or have a sprawling house in the country, isn't it time you threw a porch party? You've got all you need right here, thanks to Porch Parties.

Stephanie Dickison

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