|• Opt for an air-conditioned room with the view of a terrace garden. You can also hire a lounge if the crowd is large enough
• Base the mocktails on refreshing seasonal fruits, like litchi, watermelon or tender coconut
• Organise some interesting games to keep the guests busy
|• Try your hand at exotic concoctions
• Be dressed in formals
A poolside party, a wet and wild bash, a rain dance ' some common suggestions for celebrating the spirit of summer. But what if you are not a water baby and would like to find other ways to cool off in the heat'
“A summer coolers mocktail party could be a good way to get into the mood of the season,” says event manager Gurpreet Sethi, who specialises in organising women’s and children’s parties.
Diving into a glass full of virgin Pina Colada or the desi cooler Cola Sikhanji while catching up on spicy gossip could well be a cool way to spend a summer afternoon.
Venue and decor
On a summer noon, the best place for a mocktail do would ideally be a chilly, glass-walled room on a roof-top garden overlooking the cityscape. While the greens around will act as a cool tool, the sunshine rushing into the room will brighten up the mood.
“We also recommend the poolside as a favoured haunt for a mocktail party. If the women are adventurous, they can even be in their sarongs and swim wear and relax by the pool while sipping glasses of coolers,” adds event manager Sonu Arora, also a women’s party organiser.
A resto-bar or a lounge booked for the afternoon can also be the venue for a mocktail party if there are at least 150 guests for the do.
“The d'cor has to be happy and vibrant,” feels event manager Riya Mitra. So, doing up the place with drapes in soft colours like pink, blue and pista (the usual mocktail colours) could ring in a dreamy and feminine effect. “A funky style with the walls done up with loads of balloons, masks and large cut-outs of fruits is also an option,” adds Gurpreet.
The exotic mixes with lavish names that one sips at city bars and restaurants might not be easy to whip up. So, for a home party it is mandatory to pick some easy recipes.
“The best bases for home-made mocktails are watermelon juice and tender coconut water (daab),” feels celebrity bartender Irffan. Watermelon juice, spiced up with some masala and lemon juice is an interesting combination. “Variations of iced tea are also an option,” adds Irffan. You can make some black tea boiled with ginger (a cooling agent) and add lemon juice, sugar syrup and garam masala to it. Cool it, and dress it up with mint leaves and serve it chilled.
Smoothies with banana, honey and yogurt as the base, topped with fresh fruits make for low-calorie cool drinks. “One can get cucumber juice and add it to the usual Soda Sikhanji for better taste and cooling effect,” adds the cocktail expert.
For munchies, oil-dripping fries are a strict no-no during summer, so roasted and grilled vegetables, chicken or fish should be better bets.
“Going feminine is mandatory at a mocktail party where the dress code need not be formal at all. Bright hues and floral prints should be the look,” feels designer Chhuti. Thus, bright colours and flowy comfortable fabrics should be the order of the party.
Pinks, yellows and oranges could rule the range of ponchos and kaftans that are a must if you want to flaunt a mini skirt. “For those in flowing skirts, summery tops have to be well fitted with smart cuts,” she observes.
Being an afternoon gig, flats in the footwear section and large colourful bags could complete the look.
“Some games in between the drinking and munching sessions would do well to inject some action into the relaxed do,” says Riya, who recommends a mix of the usual tambola and innovations like a mocktail fancy dress contest.
“You can ask the guests to dress up in the colours of a mocktail of their choice and carry a pitcher of the same with them,” she suggests.