Do you enjoy entertaining in the summer months? I love to cook for my friends anytime, but summer is the best! There is nothing better than sitting outside on a beautiful July evening with the grill fired up, candles lit, the sound of conversation and laughter. There is so much satisfaction in setting a beautiful table with a print tablecloth, nice dishes, linen napkins, fresh flowers. I prepare all of the food early in the day so when my guests arrive, I can give them my undivided attention. This also means that I can dress up in something summery and pretty, wear something white and not worry about dropping food on it. And isn’t summer is the best time to wear dresses? In the winter, we New Englanders tend to bundle up in long pants, heavy sweaters, chunky scarves. So it is such a sensual treat to feel the air of bare arms, shoulders, legs.
We still have some summer clothes at Kate Grey, though before you know it, I’ll be talking to you about those sweaters, scarves and heavier long pants. For a summer dinner party, I like the ease and style of this white tunic worn with a pair of black or tan bermudas. The high-lo dress, made from organic bamboo, is just the right combination of elegant and easy, and it is available in this beautiful shade of red as well as black.
My favorite garden party drink is sangria from a recipe by Ina Garten. It’s sparkly, tastes fresh and it is really delicious. Enjoy!
1 (750 ml) bottle good rosé wine
1/2 cup Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (3 lemons)
1/4 cup superfine sugar
3 tablespoons Grand Marnier
1 tablespoon Cognac or brandy
Water and ice, plus extra ice for serving
1/2 cup fresh raspberries
8 large fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
2 red plums, pitted and sliced ¼ inch thick
Combine the rosé, pomegranate juice, lemon juice, sugar, Grand Marnier, Cognac, 1 cup of water, and 1 cup of ice in a large glass pitcher. Stir in the raspberries, strawberries, and plums, cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours but preferably overnight.
When ready to serve, fill wine goblets or highball glasses halfway with ice. Pour the sangria over the ice, spooning some of the macerated fruit into each glass. Serve ice cold.