Posted on March 23rd, 2012 2 comments
I know that everyone who reads this Blounge is excited about the new season of MAD MEN finally starting. Sunday, March 25th, 2012 marks the beginning of the 5th season of AMC’s hit show – and what better way to jump into the swing of things than with a retro-style cocktail party?
There are fun, quick, easy tricks to throwing together a last minute party. As long as you have friends that can make it, planning a Premier Party is a snap.
Invitations: This is an informal get-together, so a phone call (or that new-fangled email) is all you need. The show starts at 9pm, so start the party earlier. I’m starting mine at 7:30, so people will be able to have a light dinner before coming over, since I’ll only be serving hors d’oeuvres.
The Theme: Make sure everyone knows this is a MAD MEN theme party. They must dress to impress, as close to 50s-60s as possible. Even if you don’t have actual retro or vintage clothing, this is easy to pull off…men wear a jacket and (thin) tie, pocket square, fedora if you have one. The women wear cocktail dresses, heels, hair up; the fun is in trying to mimic the look. Some of your friends will have era-appropriate garb, and that’s even better. Just remember – no jeans, no sweats, no t-shirts, and hell-no clothes with designers’ names on them. How gauche. Anyone shows up like that, throw them the hell out.
Food: We’re going to keep it vintage style: Chips and dips, cheese cubes (I got Havarti, Gouda, Cheddar and Port Wine), crackers, Jello, pepperoni slices, some vegetables, black olives and mixed nuts. That’s plenty for a cocktail party like this, and it’s all easy to put together.
Booze: Spend a few bucks and buy a couple of bottles of booze that still have the same labels they did 50+ years ago. Here are some suggestions:
Johnny Walker Black Label
Appleton Estate Rum
Jose Cuervo Gold
Jack Daniels (Green or Black Label)
The Glenlivet Scotch
All of these bottles look authentically mid-century, and will look great on the bar.
Actual Cocktails: Sure, you can make any of the old-school recipes that were famous at the time. But if you want to keep your party simple, choose from this list of era-appropriate cocktails and offer them to your guests:
(A LITTLE MORE INVOLVED, and a lot more Tiki)
Dark n Stormy
Drink Recipes for all of these cocktails can be found on the Tiki Lounge Drinks Page, or at the AMC MAD MEN Cocktail Guide. Make sure you have lots of olives, cocktail onions, lemons, limes and other garnishes on hand.
Decor: If your home is furnished in mid-century modern decor, you won’t have to do a thing. If not, thing subterfuge. If you can keep your party to one or two main rooms, try to remove or hide any modern electronics, digital clocks, photos, paintings, etc. Spend a few clams and buy some 50s-era style lamps, clocks, album covers, anything to set the mood (You’d be surprised how many inexpensive, MCM style things you can get at places like Target and Ikea, in a pinch). Or go to the local party store and get some streamers, cut-outs and balloons to transform your party space. Colored bulbs – red, green, blue – can do wonders to make a space feel partyish in a 50s way. Print-outs of old ads, and of pix of the MAD MEN show can also spice things up. Serve your food in vintage (if you have it) or retro-style dishes, use umbrellas and swords in your drinks, stick frilly toothpicks in your cheeses and you’re on your way.
Music: Before the show starts, you’re going to want some era-correct music playing in the background. I would suggest the albums Getz/Gilberto, Music from Peter Gunn, Birth of The Cool, and anything from The Ultra Lounge series. There’s also a new collection of cool vintage tunes called “This is Vintage Now”, available for download.
Games: A good drinking game is to take a drink every time someone on the show takes a drink. Or every time Draper makes a face. Or both. Either way you’ll be plastered by the fourth commercial. Another game is to do a sort of MAD MEN themed Charades. Each person picks a character out of a hat, then mimics that character – but without speaking. First person to guess right gets to take the hot secretary into the other room for five minutes…
The Show: Don’t forget, the point of the party is to watch the show. Make sure everyone’s drinks are filled and the hors d’oeuvres are finished being served before 9pm, and also make sure there are enough seats for all your guests. Finally, dim the lights before starting the program. From what I hear, people always used to dim the lights before watching TV in the old days.
Have fun, party people!
-Tiki Chris P. reporting from the Party Room at Tiki Lounge Talk
For more tips, see my post on having an Atomic Cocktail Party.
Posted on November 12th, 2010 No comments
Since yesterday was Veterans Day, I thought it would be kool beans to do a little patriotic concoction this week. Now, I haven’t tried this cocktail yet, but it looks good and seems like it would be pretty tasty if you like your drinks sweet, so here’s
The Stars & Stripes Cocktail
for your weekend Tiki Bar pleasure.
I found this recipe on Fabulous Cocktail Recipes, a fun site with a retro-cocktail party feel. Check them out!
“Start with shot glass and pour 1/2 oz of Grenadine for the bottom layer. Using a bar spoon, float 1/2 oz of Blue Curacao for the middle layer. Wipe down the spoon and then use it to float 1/2 oz of Heavy Cream for the top layer. Sing the Star Spangled Banner and serve!” (Click here to see the actual post on Fabulous Cocktail Recipes).
Of course I can’t leave well enough alone, and had to turn it into a Tiki Drink!
-Tiki Chris P. reporting from the Tiki Bar at Tiki Lounge Talk, the Tiki Blog For Tiki Fans. (Wow, that’s a lot of Tiki!)
Posted on October 29th, 2010 2 comments
It’s Halloweekend at the Tiki Bar! From one of the worst directors to one of the best, on this week’s Mod Movie Monday we’ll look at two kats who changed the way we look at movies forever.
Let’s start with our favorite bad director, Ed Wood, Jr. Ed brought us some of the most poorly written, directed and produced films of all kind, with the zenith (or basement) of his work being Plan 9 from Outer Space. I feel bad for this kid. He just wanted to make movies that people would enjoy. Unfortunately for him, nobody really dug his stuff until years after his alcohol-soaked death. Now, we can love these lowest-budget flicks for what they are: So incredibly bad they are great. Fun to watch, fun to make fun of, fun to imagine yourself on the set 50+ years ago as walls shook and gravestones fell over.
Plan 9 is actually an interesting premise. Originally entitled “Grave Robbers from Outer Space”, the title was deemed too gory for the film’s religious backers. So it’s about space aliens who come to earth and resurrect dead people to do stuff like slowly walk into people, killing them. Or something. Actually, I’ve seen this movie several times and I’m still not sure what it’s about. Maybe because I can’t get through it sober.
Ed Wood extensively used free, stock footage to fill in the holes in his films. Scenes of cattle stampeding, WWII footage, and people walking around get spliced in at the strangest places. Add Bela Lugosi, who died during filming, Tor Johnson and Vampira to the cast. Then add in a stand-in for Bela, a guy who had the same shaped head, skulking around with a cape over his face for the rest of the flick. Tin pie plates on strings attacking California. Car chases where the cars change to different models when showed in different angles. A shower curtain in the cockpit. Are you confused? Wait’ll ya see the movie.
But it’s fun to watch, for certain. So much fun that one of Hollywood’s top weirdos, Tim Burton, made a film about Ed Wood, Jr. and his repertoire of canned junk. Shot in black and white and starring Johnny Depp (of course), Ed Wood is a thousand times better-made movie than any of Wood’s movies ever were. Martin Landau steals the show with his Bela Lugosi character. Vampira looks and acts like the original Vampira. And Ed Wood is so goofy, so much fun you have to wonder if he was really like that, or if that’s how Burton envisions how he must have been.
Either of these films is great on its own. Back to back, they’re a riot. And speaking of Bella Lugosi…
Turn this duet into a trio this Halloweekend with one of the movies that started it all, the original Bela Lugosi Dracula from 1931. Still scary and creepy today as it was 70 years ago, no vintage-style ‘ween is complete without this master of horror flicks.
Your Halloweekend Drinks!
So here’s a few drink ideas for Hallowe’en Weekend, to sip with your movies or push at your party…
Vampire’s Blood Martini
1.5 oz Russian Vodka
1 oz orange juice
1 oz cranberry juice
1 small scoop raspberry sorbet
Shake vodka, OJ, & cranberry in shaker with ice until well chilled. Strain into a large martini glass, add a small (about a teaspoon) scoop of sorbet and top with seltzer. You can add a few drops of red food coloring to make it really bloody.
There are a few variations on the Zombie Cocktail. This one, close to the old version but frozen, is probably my favorite:
1/2 oz 151 rum
1 oz pineapple juice
1 oz orange juice
1/2 oz apricot brandy
1 tsp sugar
2 oz light rum
1 oz dark rum
1 oz lime juice
Blend all ingredients with ice except the 15. Pour it into a tall Tiki mug and flloat the 151 rum on top. Garnish with a fruit slice, sprig of mint, and a cherry. To give it a real kick, add a few sprinkles of cayenne pepper into the mix. Yow!
Yep, made this one up at the Tiki Bar. Not really an exotic drink, as there’s no rum, but it’s strong and will probably tear your guts out, so…
2 oz Jack Daniels (or Jim Beam, which will be a little sweeter)
1 oz Goldschlager or Cinnamon Schnapps
1/2 Orange Curacau
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
2-3 drops Bitters (optional)
Apple and pumpkin, chopped into small cubes
This can be served over the rocks, or warmed up in a mug. Stir all ingredients together. float small cubes of apple and pumpkin on top and garnish with a cinnamon stick stirrer. Like I said, strong as hell but krazy fun!
-Tiki Chris P, in ghost form floating around Haunted Tiki Island Resort. Reporting for Tiki Lounge Talk, the Tiki Culture Tiki Blog for retro lovers and Tikiphiles all over the world.Drink Recipies, Halloween, History, Mod Movie Mondays, Movies, Noir & Vintage Stories, Personal Stories, Tiki Talk, Uncategorized, Vintage Cars Add new tag, cocktail party, cocktails, dracula, drink recipes, ed wood, Halloween, Mod Movie Mondays, plan 9 from outer space, retro, retro culture, tiki bar, tiki blog, tiki culture, tiki life, tiki lounge, Tiki Talk
Posted on October 9th, 2010 No comments
The RED DEATH
1 oz Amaretto
1 oz Peach Schnapps
1 oz Sloe gin
1 oz Southern Comfort
1 oz Vodka
Shake everything up in a shaker and strain over rocks in a very tall glass. You can make it redder for you Halloween party by throwing in a couple of drops of red food coloring.
-Tiki Chris reporting from Haunted Tiki Island
Posted on September 28th, 2010 2 comments
Oy yez, Oy yez, let it be heard, this is the OFFICIAL WORLD ANNOUNCEMENT of International Exotic Cocktail Day, October 1st, 2010.
Ah, it feels good to establish a new holiday, and one that’s long overdue. Sure, there are other days like it…but not the actual, official, one-of-a-kind International Exotic Cocktail Day.
Pass the word! Tell your friends! Tell your co-workers! Tell your bartender!
What is International Exotic Cocktail Day? IECD, from now on to be held on Friday of October each year is a day to celebrate the pleasure of enjoying an Exotic Cocktail at your favorite Tiki Bar, on the lanai, by the pool or on the front lawn. It’s a day to imbibe in your favorite mixes with friends and family. It’s a day to remember the people who started it all and the people who keep the traditions alive today!
How to Celebrate International Exotic Cocktail Day: Share recipes with your friends, gather in crowds and drink exiting concoctions around your Tiki bar, or meet up at the Mai Kai (or your favorite Tiki Lounge). Whatever floats your boat, kids! Be sure to garnish everything you drink that day with a cocktail umbrella, pineapple slice and a cherry, even at work. Drink virgin frozen drinks at work all day and add the booze later on. Have an “over the air” cocktail party where you and your online friends around the world make the same drinks at the same time and tweet or FB your results, and toast each other across the globe. Try to make exotic cocktails you’ve never had before, or go with your old favorites. Have buttons and stickers made up that say “International Exotic Cocktail Day”. Go ahead, after all, it’s International Exotic Cocktail Day, so have a ball!
How International Exotic Cocktail Day got started: I was sipping a Blue Hawaiian one evening while looking for ideas for upcoming Tiki Lounge Talk posts when I decided to google “Exotic Cocktail Day”. Nothing came up as an actual day of remembrance and revelry, so like a good Tiki kid I found it my duty to execute this all-important holiday.
How to share this great news: If you’re reading this than no doubt you’re on board with this great holiday. Spread the word, kids! Twitter your pals, post it on Facebook & MySpace, Digg it, blog it, send out a mass email, whatever you can do to get your F&F in on it. Remember, it’s all about living the kool and breezy Tiki lifestyle, so get hip, kids!
Official Facebook Event Page: HERE
The Retro Tiki Lounge on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/RetroTikiLounge
Here’s some great drink recipe posts from Tiki Lounge Talk: http://tikiloungetalk.com/category/drink-recipies/