Nothing tastes as refreshing as an iced cold drink on a warm day, but the heat could turn your drink into a watered-down version of itself. For a host or hostess, nothing is as frustrating as half-full glasses of soda, tea and juices abandoned around the social area. As costly as food and drinks are to provide for guests, make sure they have no reason to abandon a drink in the first place.
Whatever liquid refreshment you are serving for the party, chill them first. If there is no room in the fridge, utilize the freezer. Also, chill the glasses by adding ice and placing them in the freezer until ready to fill. Use the following ideas to keep drinks cold without melting ice cubes watering them down.
- Freeze large red or black grapes to use in wine glasses to serve red or white wines.
- Peel lemons and separate by sections. Freeze to use as ice cubes in lemonade or Sprite.
- Frozen watermelon or cantaloupe balls keep fruit juices chilled.
- Keep iced tea cold by adding frozen lemon sections or frozen slices of apple.
- Punch can be chilled with frozen pineapple chunks.
- Freeze fresh chocolate mint in water to chill ice water.
- Frozen strawberries, raspberries, blueberries or blackberries can be added to any fruit juice or lemonade.
Pre-chilled drinks won't immediately melt your frozen fruit. Serve drinks in glasses no larger than 12 ounces. Drinks served in larger glasses will get warm before the guests have time to drink it all, causing all the abandoned drinks. Make sure guests know where to go for a refill.
Designate one person to add frozen fruit to refills. Wear disposable gloves to add the fruit or use a dipper. Young children may not want to eat the fruit after the liquid is gone. For these guests, use crushed ice. No need to waste the healthy, and not inexpensive, fruit.
If alcoholic beverages are served, make sure guests eat enough food also. Stop serving all alcohol at least 90 minutes before guests are expected to leave. Call a cab or offer to drive any guests who aren't sober enough to drive home.