cocktails

Holiday Entertaining Event: The Menu

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carrot_dip_cider_punch
Get ready for fancy snacking, galore.

It’s almost here! This Saturday evening (December 7, 5–7pm) is Vida Vegan’s holiday event, Holiday Hors D’oeuvres & How-Tos—hosted by Janessa Philemon-Kerp, Jess Sconé, and Michele Truty. We’re down to the fun stuff: final recipe testing and crafting and practicing our demos.

If this is the first you’re hearing about it, then yipes stripes, grab one of the few remaining tickets now so you can hang out and eat and drink and craft with us this weekend! If you’re in the Portland area, we’d love to see you there! And keep an eye on our Instagram feed, where we’ll continue posting photos of our testing and behind the scenes prep sessions.

Finally, a recipe for homemade cauliflower "goat cheese"
Finally, a recipe for homemade cauliflower “goat cheese”

We’re having a great time playing with wintery flavors. Just check out our menu!

EAT

  • Savory spiced popcorn

  • Red curry carrot dip

  • Cauliflower goat cheese

  • Speakeasy smoked Yukon Gouda

  • Coconut vinegar quick pickles

  • Cheese Plate fromage fort & crackers

  • Baked maple bourbon popcorn

  • Depression-era chocolate cake with chocolate ganache

  • Italian olive oil citrus cake

  • Poppy-seed kolaches

  • Candy cane chocolate–chocolate chip cookies

DRINK

  • Spiced apple-red wine punch

  • Sparkling cranberry orange punch (non-alcoholic)

  • Coffee

  • Stash tea

CRAFT

  • String balls

  • Hands-on papercraft table (gift tags and menu/place cards)

  • Décor ideas, tablescaping

  • Homemade gift-giving ideas

So yeah, loads of food and fun, and a special gazillion tips throughout the evening.

Bonus holiday cookies, always.
Bonus holiday cookies, always.

And we’re putting a bunch of the recipes together in a little booklet for attendees, with a little homemade present, too! And who knows, you may win one of our door prizes. Now you can see why we’re so excited.

Remember, this private event is 21+, so bring ID.  Hope to see you there!

We’re Throwing a Party: Holiday Hors D’oeuvres & How-Tos!

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holiday party revised

The ladies of Vida Vegan—Janessa, Jess, and Michele—are throwing a December do! It’s a party with a purpose, a lovely evening of mingling and eating and drinking…and inspiration and education. We’ll help you get ready for your wintery event, cozying up with friends and family and food and fun.

We’ll have vegan sweets and savories, party-worthy punch and cocktails/mocktails, and décor ideas. Demos, hands-on crafting, and a special take-home gift!

Learn more about this 21+ event here, and get your tickets here—it’s a small space so make sure you don’t miss out. (And here’s the Facebook event, so you can let the machines mark your calendar for you.)

VVC Cocktail Lounge Field Trip: The Bye and Bye

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This story takes place in the dark.

I love The Bye and Bye. If you’ve been there, you love The Bye and Bye. If you haven’t been there, you want to.

Last night happened to be gorgeous, unseasonably warm for October, so I hit the back patio with some friends. I present to you our sexy-as-all-getout cocktails.


Here’s the joint’s signature drink, The Bye and Bye. It’s a cranny-peachy-bourbony masterpiece, and it comes in a mason jar as big as your head. Beware, though, as it tastes like juice so it goes down quick. Even if you’re getting food (which you totally should), two of these will put you in don’t-drive-home status.


Looking for a manly cocktail? The North Williams is your guy. It’s bourbon, fancy ginger beer, and lemon—weighty flavors that somehow agree to get along, you know, for the cause.


And a good old-fashioned dirty martini. I asked my friend if it was extra dirty, and he replied that you should never ask for extra dirty when what you’re looking for is filthy. Indeed.

VVC Cocktail Lounge: It’s Not Just the Hooch

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A great cocktail doesn’t necessarily have top-shelf liquors—you’re not going to put a $50 bottle of champagne into mimosas! If you look at most recipes, the alcohol is only half your drink. The other half is juice, soda, or sweetener, so why not make your mixers top-shelf?

Juice: Unless you’re making a pitcher of margaritas, you don’t need an electric citrus juicer. Fresh is better. You know it, I know it, your guests know it. If you use a bottled juice, remember it’s probably a bit stronger than it is off the tree. Most importantly, use a juice you’d want to drink on its own. If you look through your juice aisle, you might spy pomegranate concentrate, cherry juice, and other neat things you never looked for before. They can be pricey, but if they last…

Sodas: Sometimes it’s just a little club soda for the fizzies, but other times you’re looking for a flavor that complements your liquor. Instead of Coke, why not step it up a quarter or two and get yourself a Fentimans? Ginger ale will get you where you’re going, but wouldn’t you rather arrive in a spicy ginger beer? Sparkling ciders aren’t just made from apples anymore. You can find all sorts of neat things when you allow yourself to. And so what if you’ve never seen a cocktail recipe involving blood orange cider? Make one up!

Sweeteners & Syrups: You’ve probably got some agave nectar in your cabinet already. How about fruity syrups for coffees? Flavored syrups of all sorts are great in both cocktails and mocktails (or even iced tea). Last week, we showed you how to make your own grenadine. You can make your own simple syrup, too, by boiling water and adding an equal amount of sugar, heating and stirring until completely dissolved. Completely. Then flavor (if you like) and pour it into a clean glass jar, storing it in the fridge.

Now you’ve got no excuse for a boring old Rum & Coke.