New Year's Eve 2011 Party and Drink Ideas

WNN NEW YEARS 12-29-11

New Year's Eve is around the corner so to help us ring in the New Year, here are a few tips and ideas from America's Chief Entertaining Officer, Tim Laird.

This is the time when the Champagne comes out but many are intimidated on what to buy and how to properly open it without having the cork fly and champagne spraying all over the house.

What to buy:

  1. You don't need to spend a lot of money for good Champagne
  2. Look for " Méthode Champenoise" on the label, which means it was made in the traditional French method. This is when the second fermentation actually occurs in the bottle you are buying. Less expensive sparklers are sometimes still wine injected with carbonation.
  3. Choose your style based on sweetness level *Brut is less sweet *Extra dry is a little sweeter *For a little more sweet go with sweet cuvee or a sweet rose

To open:

Here are 5 easy steps so you will enjoy sipping your champagne rather than spraying:

  1. Make sure the champagne is properly chilled (at least 4 hours in the refrigerator)
  2. Carefully remove the wire cage with 6 half turns of the handle
  3. Hold the cork and turn the bottle, not the cork, while keeping the bottle at a 45 degree angle
  4. Slowly release the cork from the bottle
  5. Pour and Cheers!

You don't have to have alcohol to enjoy a great sparkling cocktail to ring in the New Year. Here are a few fun and easy alcohol-free drinks :

  • Sparkling POM: lemon lime soda with pomegranate juice and seeds
  • Ginger and Spice: ginger ale with a spiced syrup
  • Club Soda and passion fruit
  • Lemon Lime soda with Hibiscus flower

And finally, a sweet ending to enjoy with your sparkling beverages; an assortment of fun cupcakes for all to enjoy.

Find out more in his book here.

Watch the video segment here:

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