Pool Party for 30
Cucumber Cocktail with Chamomile Tonic
"A lot of cultures start meals with an aperitif or end with a digestif," says Jovial King. "Having a bitter drink before or after a meal is just a way to slow down, which is always great for digestion." Her chamomile tonic, with vodka and dandelion greens, is delicious in Marcia Kiesel's refreshing, unsweetened cocktail.
In a simple sauce like this, be sure to use great-tasting olive oil—the flavor really comes through.
Tip: Almost the entire menu—including this refreshing salsa—is meant to be served at room temperature, taking pressure off the host and keeping the mood easy and breezy.
These chunky little shrimp cakes from F&W’s Justin Chapple are spiked with scallions, lemon and smoked paprika, and served with an almost-instant spicy mayo.
Bacon-and-Romaine Skewers with Blue Cheese Dressing
Wedge salad (iceberg lettuce with blue cheese dressing and bacon) is a classic American dish. Here, James Holmes, chef of Austin's Olivia restaurant, reconfigures it as a playful cocktail snack.
Concord Grape Granita
This icy dessert gets its sweet, tangy taste from Concord grape juice, which has three times the antioxidant power of orange and grapefruit juices.