(201) Magazine, May 2010
By Susan Sherrill Axelrod
Photos by Ted Axelrod

Offering a special cocktail in addition to a full bar or a selection of wine and beer has become a popular entertaining trend. Whether the drink is passed on trays as guests arrive or mixed to order, a creative cocktail is a fun and fresh way get the party started. Taking the concept one step further, signature drinks paired with hors d’oeuvres can feature seasonal ingredients or reflect the event theme. We asked Franklin Lakes caterer Ninamarie Bojekian, chef and proprietor of Ooh La La Catering & Events, to design some pairings that we hope will inspire you as you plan your next party.

Ooh La La’s Basil-Infused Honey Mojito

Serves 4

1 ½ cups water
1 bunch fresh basil leaves
2 mint tea bags
2/3 cup honey
4 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 lime, sliced
4 ounces golden rum
1 bottle sparkling water

Bring water, basil, tea bags and honey to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer and stir occasionally, about 7 mins. Remove from heat and steep for 1 hour. Strain, reserve infused water and refrigerate until ready to use.

Prepare individually by adding 2 onces infused water, 1 tablespoon sugar, and a quarter of the lime slices in a rocks glass. Using a pestle or wooden spoon, muddle ingredients together and top with ice. Add 1 ounce rum and stir. Top with sparkling water and serve.

Ooh La La’s Pinky

Serves 4

1 large watermelon, seeded & cubed
8 ounces vodka
1 bottle pink prosecco

Place watermelon pieces in a food processor or blender and mix until pureed. Prepared individually by placing ice, 2 ounces of vodka and 3 ounces of watermelon puree in a cocktail shaker. Shake well, strain into a champagne flute, top each with chilled pink prosecco and serve immediately.

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