Aloha Meringue Pie: #Pieathalon Hawaii-Style

FullSizeRender 1 300x209 Aloha Meringue Pie: #Pieathalon Hawaii StyleMad Men style baking has been underway for the 2018 #Pieathalon, hosted by Dinner is Served 1972. Bloggers select pie recipes from pre-1990 cookbooks,  submit recipes and bake fellow pieathletes’ chosen recipes.

Over twenty bloggers baked, including Mad Men party bloggers Eliot’s Eats, Silver Screen Suppers and Velveteen Lounge Kitchen, who (we are not surprised to learn!) sent our Aloha pie  Aloha Meringue Pie: #Pieathalon Hawaii Stylerecipe, from Prudence Penny’s House of Values Tested Recipes.

Prudence Penny was a pen name for multiple food writers, authors from Hearst newspapers across the country.  “Prudence” wrote columns, recipe and cookbooks, and provided household advice. Kimberly Wilmot Voss, author of The Food Section: Newspaper Women and the Culinary Community, explains that “because it would have been expensive to wire recipes around the country, there were different ‘Prudence Penny’ reporters at the individual Hearst newspapers.”

We’ve written about America’s infatuation with Hawaii in the late 50s and early 60s on our blog and in The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook: Hawaii gained statehood in 1959, and as statehood approached and for years thereafter, Americans were simply gaga for anything that smacked of these exotic Pacific islands half way between Japan and the mainland.

bh Aloha Meringue Pie: #Pieathalon Hawaii Style

Meghan enjoys a Blue Hawaii on the beach in Waikiki

We were excited for this Aloha Meringue Pie, but not sure of the origin. We asked Hawaii food blogger Deb of Kahakai Kitchen if she’d heard of such Aloha Pie and she had not (she did mention Hawaiian Millionaire’s Pie and Hula Pie, and those are now on our future pie list).
The Aloha is essentially a lemon  Aloha Meringue Pie: #Pieathalon Hawaii Stylemeringue pie with a few twists: first, a meringue crust is swapped for the topping. A hot, humid day in August was not the best to attempt the Aloha meringue crust. A lemon meringue pie style filling, with the addition of crushed pineapple tops the meringue, followed by an layer of whipped cream with flaked coconut,  and a final topping of crushed pineapple.

The pie, as we expected was very sweet and rich, and it didn’t exactly take us to the tropics! We cut the sugar in half throughout the recipe and it was still very sweet. We opted for canned crushed pineapple and coconut flakes for 60s authenticity, but if making again, we would use fresh pineapple and coconut to boost the flavor.FullSizeRender 300x225 Aloha Meringue Pie: #Pieathalon Hawaii Style

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Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en

We loved this chance to learn about undiscovered vintage cookbooks and recipes and to check out all the pies! Aloha and Maholo, Dinner is Served 1972, Velveteen Lounge Kitchen, and fellow Pieathletes!



#TheLostFamilySupperClub: Oysters Rockefeller and Oyster Stew

TLFSupperClub2 1 #TheLostFamilySupperClub: Oysters Rockefeller and Oyster StewWe’re celebrating the release of Jenna Blum’s novel The Lost Family (HarperCollins, 6/5/18) with bloggers across the country who are creating novel-inspired recipes inspired for a virtual dinner feast —  #TheLostFamilySupperClub — hosted by  We’re bringing two historic oyster appetizers to get the party started.

About the book: The New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us, Jenna Blum creates a vivid portrait of marriage, family, and the haunting grief of World War II in The Lost Family, in an emotionally charged, beautifully rendered story that spans a generation, from the 1960s to the 1980s.

The Lost Family first transports us to 1965 Manhattan, where patrons flock to Masha’s, the restaurant owned by Peter Rashkin, a German-Jewish Holocaust survivor. Peter was training as a chef in Berlin when the Nazis came to power; he now devotes himself to his successful Upper East side restaurant named after his wife who disappeared along with his daughters during a Nazi round up.  When the novel begins, he meets June Bouquet, a young New York model, with whom he falls in love.

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Grand Central Oyster Bar, 1960s

On arriving in Manhattan, Peter was employed as a busboy at the legendary Grand Central Oyster Bar; he was later dismissed when his exposed forearm tattoo from Auchwitz disturbed the clientele. When he tells June that he worked at the restaurant as they pass through Grand Central Station, she shudders with disgust at the thought of eating oysters, although she’s never tasted them. But, to Peter, June “tasted like a an oyster fresh from the Sound, Blue points or Peconic Pearls.”

Blum’s references to oysters and the Grand Central Oyster bar in the novel made us nostalgic for Mad Men oyster recipes. New York waters produced some of the largest, sweetest oysters in the world before over consumption and pollution took their toll, and the oyster, according to William Grimes, author of Appetite City: A Culinary History of New York (2009), was to New York what the lobster was to Boston and the crab to Baltimore. Oyster stands, oyster saloons (associated with vice and prostitution) and oyster cellars, literally basement establishments, dotted the city. “Today,” writes Grimes, “only one restaurant in New York offers an approximation of the old oyster cellars: the Oyster Bar at Grand Central Terminal.”

Since 1913, the Oyster Bar, located a level down from the street in Grand Central Station, has attracted passengers and patrons seeking fresh oysters and seafood. The Oyster Bar’s series of soaring, scallop-shaped ceilings are today lined with light bulbs, giving the impression of sitting inside an enormous, illuminated oyster shell.  Oyster Stew and Oysters Rockefeller are two iconic mid century Oyster Bar menu items.

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Diners at the Grand Central Oyster Bar ordering the Oyster Stew, 1965 (New York Times)

Nick Petters, the Oyster Bar’s chef in 1965, when The Lost Family opens, claimed he had made “4 million stews and each stew is 7 oysters,” wrote Nan Ickeringgill in the New York Times. The signature oyster stew “made in steam cups before the customer’s eyes, is almost as much of an institution at the Oyster Bar as Nick himself,” she added.

Author Tom Wolfe wrote of the renowned stew, “His Majesty the oyster is indigenous to this city and New Yorkers insist there are no oysters better than the fat firm Long Island kind and no dish to beat oyster stew as it is made at the Grand Central Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station,” in New York Herald Tribune Presents: New York, New York (1964).

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Grand Central Oyster Bar Oyster Stew (1965)

And Julia Child shared her version of the 1937 soup recipe along with recollections of the Oyster Bar in From Julia Child’s Kitchen (Knopf, 1882). “You sat up on a stool and peered over the counter into a series of steam bowls, where they made their famous oyster stew.”

Our 1965 version of the recipe below is from Oyster Bar Chef Nick Petters, as told to the New York Times.


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Oysters Rockefeller

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Antoine’s Oysters Rockefeller recipe at Pascale’s Manale in New Orleans

Oysters Rockefeller was invented in one of New Orleans’ most famous restaurants, Antoine’s, based on a dish originally made with snails. In 1899, Antoine’s began serving topping the oysters with greens, butter sauce, and breadcrumbs before baking or broiling Gulf oysters. Legend has it that a satisfied customer declared the dish, “as rich as Rockefeller,” In truth, Jules Alciatore, the founder’s son then Antoine’s owner, wanted a name that would suggest the dish was “the richest in the world,” and Oysters Rockefeller was born. The Antoine’s recipe, still popular in New Orleans is a secret, (we sampled a similar dish recently at New Orleans’ Pascale’s Manale), but has a topping of parsley, breadcrumbs, herbsaint, and celery. The Oyster Bar recipe has changed their 1960s version in which oysters were covered with wilted spinach, breadcrumbs, shallots, butter and Pernod (see our recipe from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook). If you visit the Oyster Bar today, the oysters are served a bed of creamed spinach and glazed with hollandaise sauce.

The Lost Family is a stunning novel and we savored every page of this moving exploration of Peter’s life and family. The book is also rich with descriptions of foods and drink of the 1960s1980s, and even includes menus from the fictional Masha’s. The menus “are a fusion of 1965-era favorites and German-Jewish comfort food, Peter and Masha’s favorite childhood dishes:  Masha’s “Little Clouds” (cream puffs with chocolate fondue),  Brisket Wellington, Chicken Kiev, and my favorite, Masha Torte—an inside-out German chocolate cake with cherries flambé,” Blum told us. “I relied on my German friend Christiane’s mother’s recipes, my childhood memories of my Jewish grandmother’s dishes, the Mad Men Cookbook and similar cookbooks from the 1960s, and ingredients from my garden.”

We enjoyed reconnecting with Mad Men party bloggers — including Sidewalk Shoes, Amy’s Cooking Adventures, Dinner is Served 1972MidCentury Menu, Culinary Adventures with Cam, Eliot’s Eats, The Red Head Baker — and meeting new ones at The Lost Family Supper Club. On June 3, all party bloggers recipes for novel-inspired dishes and drinks will be posted The Lost Family Supper Club Party Page, and you can follow on social media with the #TheLostFamilySupperClub hashtag.

The Lost Family Supper Club: Oyster Stew

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 1 bowl


stew #TheLostFamilySupperClub: Oysters Rockefeller and Oyster Stew

A recipe for Oyster Stew from the Grand Central Oyster Bar circa 1965 for #The LostFamilySupperClub, a virtual dinner party to celebrate the launch of Jenna Blum's novel, THE LOST FAMILY.

Recipe: (New York Times , “Oyster Farmers Check Crop For Harvest on the Half Shell” , September 8, 1965)


  • 2 teaspoons butter, divided
  • Dash of paprika
  • Dash of celery salt
  • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 7 fresh oysters
  • 1/2 cup clam both
  • 1 cup milk


  1. Place 1 teaspoon of butter, paprika, celery salt & Worcestershire sauce in a deep saucepan. Bring to a boil.
  2. Add oysters and clam both. Simmer until oyster edges curl. Add milk and bring the a boil.
  3. Pour the stew into a soup bowl and top with paprika and teaspoon of butter.
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Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Recap: #PartyLikeAMadMan Highlights

TheUnofficialMadMenCookbook FinaleParty 600x196 V1 1024 1024x335 Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Recap: #PartyLikeAMadMan HighlightsBloggers give us so many reasons to adore them. They aren’t afraid to take risks, get messy in the kitchen, and think out of the box. That was certainly true of almost 50 bloggers who joined together at a virtual dinner party on April 5 to toast Mad Men’s final season with The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook and create a memorable Mad Men menu.

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Girlichef recalls the opening scene of Mad Men with Don’s Old Fashioned

A few bloggers brought us right back to favorite Mad Men food moments: Girlichef went back to the opening scene of the very first episode, replicating Don’s scribbled napkin notes as he sips an Old Fashioned. Cheap Ethnic Eatz pays a tribute to Roger’s “Milky Vodka” breakfast.

A Mama, Baby & Shar-pei in the Kitchen captured Don’s first date with Bethany —at Jimmy LaGrange’s—by whipping up Chicken Kiev. Mama Challenge recalled Joan and Roger’s early hotel trysts with a Beef Wellington worthy of room service.

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Brooklyn Farm Girl wishes Don had chosen Betty’s Swedish Meatballs over chicken salad.

Brooklyn Farm Girl was back in the Draper family kitchen, when Betty offered Don Swedish meatballs or chicken salad for dinner: our blogger declared that Don missed out by choosing the latter: “Betty’s Swedish Meatballs are where the magic is at,” she wrote.

And they partied! We Heart This served up canapés and whiskey sours for their retro happy hour office party. Dinner is Served 1972 served up a dozen dishes at her Mad Men bash with some pals: her cake fountain was a hit with our
virtual partygoers.

 Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Recap: #PartyLikeAMadMan Highlights

Dinner is Served 1972’s  glowing cake fountain set the mood at her Mad Men bash.

Food Hunter’s Guide to Cuisine had a retro crowd pleasing menu for her cocktail hour. Ugly Food Tastes Better invited ”misfit” friends to sip one of Peggy’s favorites, Brandy Alexanders, and Culinary Adventures with Cam topped off a Mad Men birthday party with Henry and Betty’s Apple Pie. Silver Screen Suppers invited a gang to toast Trader Vic’s with Rumaki and Trader Vic’s steak.

Some of our chef bloggers had twists up their sleeves. Mission: Food brightened up her Stork Club Cocktails with Cara Cara oranges, while She’s Cookin’ added endive for a modern Waldorf

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Silver Screen Suppers Rumaki Spread

Salad. Vintage Sugar Cube swapped red wine for sangria in Barbetta’s Baked Pears and Sidewalk Shoes mixed both His & Hers Martinis. Copykat Recipes fired up Parmesan canapés with Sriracha, and Kitchen Witch embellished her Deviled Egg with truffle (oil, salt and pearls!)

 Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Recap: #PartyLikeAMadMan Highlights

Famished Fish Finicky Shark paired a wedge salad with a Bloody Mary

Everyone swooned a bit. Famished Fish, Finicky Shark waxed about the divine tang and crunch of her Wedge salad, while Cookistry warned of the hazards of making Pete’s California Dip: “DON’T MAKE THIS RECIPE. Just don’t. If you do make it, you will become obsessed.” From Gate to Plate called Cocktail nibblers “perfection”: “Something a little salty to with the something boozy is a perfect pair.” *That* Susan Wiliams just loves when a recipe has a story, like the Kennedy White House and the Avocado Crabmeat Mimosa.

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Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en went poolside with Pete Campbell at the Beverly Hills Hotel

Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en went poolside with Pete Cambpell, for a Beverly Hills Hotel Royal Hawaiian, got stoned with Peggy and Paul while they devised a Bacardi ad, and mixed a Trader Vic’s Mai Tai Lost in Paradise assembled Betty’s appetizers from Season 6. Thank you video bloggers!

A few partygoers arrived with a complete meal, including a Mad Men lunch from Making Miracles and Sally’s French Toast breakfast from Cheap Ethnic Eatz, while I Can Cook That
prepared a ribeye and potatoes dinner fit for Pete Campbell.

And others attending focused on creating one dish or drink. Feed Me Seymour went modern with Passion Fruit Mojitos, and Seitan Beats Your Meat captured “drowning” and illusion” in Don Drapers Journey through her image of Don’s Old Fashioned —and his journey. Merlot Mommy mixed the Roosevelt Hotel’s MadMenhattan.

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Karen’s Kitchen Stories served up the Stork Club Cocktail

Karen’s Kitchen Stories favored the Stork Club Cocktail, while The Red Head Baker was keen on Crab Rangoon.

Cocktail and appetizers were popular.  Sass and Gin paired Jackie Kennedy’s Avocado and Crabmeat Mimosa Salad, and with a Bridge Night Tom Collins. Heritage Recipe Box offered Don’s Old Fahsioned with stuffed celery while Food in Literature complemented canapés with Bloody Marys.

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That Skinny Chick Can Bake brought Sally Draper’s Fudge Cake

There were toasts to favorite Mad Men characters: Dying for Chocolate baked Cola-Cola cake for Betty Draper, who almost had a modeling job with Coke. Mother Would Know made Date Nut Bread for Peggy and Joan and Eliot’s Eats went tropical with Joan’s Blue Hawaiian.

 Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Recap: #PartyLikeAMadMan Highlights

Eliot’s Eats with a taste of the tropics, a Blue Hawaiian.

Amy’s Cooking Adventures, To the T, and That Skinny Chick Can Bake celebrated with Sally Draper’s Cocoa Fudge “Mommy and Daddy” cake.

Veggie options — Chile Rellenos and Waldorf Salad — were a hit with Dancing Veggies. Cookie Dough and Oven Mitt discovered the joy of adding pecans to Pineapple Upside Down Cake and Cheese Curd in Paradise learned this cake was an easy one.

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Cheap Ethnic Eats midcentury goblets for her breakfast gimlet

Of course, there was a lot of nostalgia. For Cooking Through the Clippings, there were childhood memories eating Swedish Meatballs. A Book of Cookrye remembered visiting Lindy’s in New York while making cheesecake. Jamie Godfrey used his midcentury modern gold glassware to serve his Tom Collins, while Cheap Ethnic Eatz served her vodka gimlets in goblets—a 1950s wedding anniversary gift for her grandparents.

We’re grateful to this wonderful group of bloggers who contributed to the feast by helping us share these Mad Men era recipes for others to enjoy. Cheers!

The Virtual Mad Men Finale Party menu
Virtual Mad Men
Finale Party Facebook Album

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Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Facebook Album

A tremendous thank you to all participating bloggers, judges, and sponsors, below.

Blogger Awards:

Don Draper Best in Show Award for best overall blog: writing, creativity and visual excellence

Winner: We Heart This
2nd Place: Food Hunters Guide to Cuisine

Peggy Olson Copywriting Award for Best Writing

Winner: A Mama, Baby & Shar-pei in the Kitchen
2nd place: Cookistry

Sal Romano Style Award for Excellence in Photography

Winner: Sidewalk Shoes
2nd place: Seitan Beats Your Meat

Sal Romano Style Award for Excellence in Styling

Winner: Sidewalk Shoes (His and Hers Martinis)
2nd place: Cookistry (California Dip)

Sal Romano Style Award for Excellence in Photographic Concept

Winner: Seitan Beats Your Meat
2nd place Girlichef

Roger Sterling Award for Humor and Party Atmosphere

Winner: Dinner is Served 1972
2nd place: Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en

Joan Harris/Ted Chaough “Bold and Creative” Award

Winner: Dinner is Served 1972
2nd place: Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en

Pete Campbell Award for Best Pitched Recipe:

Winner: *That* Susan Williams
2nd place: Cookistry

Thanks to our judges!

Evan Kleiman, WCRW’s “Good Food” Host
Faith Durand, Executive Editor, The Kitchn
Warren Bobrow, author Whiskey Cocktails & Apothecary Cocktails
Arthur Bovino, Senior Editor, The Daily Meal
Kathy Gunst, Chef, NPR’s “Here and Now”
Leah Wilson, Editor-in-Chief of Smart Pop, BenBella Books
Joelle Delbourgo, Literary Agent
Nina Gallant, Food Photographer
Catrine Kelty, Food Stylist

And many thanks to our sponsors for Mad Men prizes:

New York’s Roosevelt Hotel

Grand Central Oyster Bar
William Greenberg Desserts
Utz Snacks
Bauer Pottery

Groovy Candies:
Bormioli Rocco
Quartous Books

And we appreciate generosity of BenBella Books for their support of this event.

Three Mad Men Inspired Cocktails from New York’s Roosevelt Hotel to Toast the Series Finale

 Three Mad Men Inspired Cocktails from New York’s Roosevelt Hotel to Toast the Series Finale

Madison Club Lounge at New York’s Roosevelt Hotel

For the Virtual Mad Men Finale Party on April 5 —when we’ll be creating the ultimate Mad Men menu with bloggers worldwide—we’re pleased to share three cocktail recipes from the Roosevelt Hotel. Bartenders at the Madison Club Lounge, a classic New York City hotel bar in the Roosevelt, will mix these classic Mad Men drinks — Sterling Cooper Cosmopolitans, MadMenhattans and Dapper Dons — for the show’s final season premiere on April 5. Manager Keith Riker says the “brown spirits”, and in particular the Manhattan, have grown in popularity since Mad Men premiered in 2007.TheUnofficialMadMenCookbook FinaleParty 200x2001 150x150 Three Mad Men Inspired Cocktails from New York’s Roosevelt Hotel to Toast the Series Finale

The landmark hotel, located on Madison Avenue at 45th Street in the heart of midtown, was built in 1924, and named for President Theodore Roosevelt. This “Grand Dame of Madison Avenue” is a favorite haunt for many Mad Men characters: Don took up residence there after his split from Betty, and it’s where Sal orders a Campari when he meets Elliot from Belle Jolie Lipstick.

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Bartenders at the Roosevelt Hotel

If you’re in Manhattan on April 5, head to The Roosevelt to take in the Mad Men premiere on a big screen, sip some classic cocktails, and enjoy food and giveaways in a setting that will take you right back to the Mad Men era. Sunday, April 5th, 7-11 p.m. You may even hear the echoes of Guy Lombardo and his orchestra.


Sterling Cooper Cosmopolitan

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Sterling Cooper Cosmopolitan from New York’s Roosevelt Hotel

From bartenders at Madison Club Lounge, Roosevelt Hotel for The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook

A cosmo might be the next favorite drink for the Mad Men crew. We  imagine it will be sipped at Don’s retirement party.

1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
1 ounce cranberry juice
1/2 ounce Cointreau
1 1/3 ounce Absolut Vodka Citron
Prosecco, to top off
Lime wheel, for garnish

Pour all ingredients into cocktail shaker filled with ice.
Shake well and double strain into large cocktail glass.
Top with Prosecco. Garnish with lime wheel and lemon slice.

Makes 1 drink

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MadMenhattan from the Roosevelt Hotel


From bartenders at Madison Club Lounge, Roosevelt Hotel for The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook

One one of the most popular cocktails ever made, and one of the most difficult to make well: everything hinges on both the types of bourbon and vermouth used and how they work in combination.

1 3/4 ounce Maker’s Mark bourbon
2 ounces Martini Rossi sweet vermouth
Dash of bitters
Maraschino cherry, for garnish

Stir ingredients in a shaker over ice. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass,  and garnish with cherry.

Makes 1 drink

Dapper Don
 Old Fashioned

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Dapper Don Old Fashioned
from the Roosevelt Hotel

From bartenders at Madison Club Lounge, Roosevelt Hotel for The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook

The very first cocktail to appear in  Mad
Men, and this popular drinkmakes many appearances in the series, as Don’s drink of choice. This version with his favorite whisky, Canadian Club. If you believe in client loyalty, when you make an orange twist, make it with Sunkist, a Sterling Cooper client.

1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 orange slices
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 1/2 ounces Canadian Club whisky
Dash plain water
Maraschino cherry, for garnish

Place sugar in Old Fashioned glass with orange slice and saturate with bitters. Add a dash of plain water. Muddle until dissolved.

Fill the glass with ice cubes and add whiskey. Garnish with orange slice, and a cocktail cherry.

Makes 1 drink

#PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015

TheUnofficialMadMenCookbook FinaleParty 600x196 V1 1024 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015Aprons on! Shakers out! Bloggers are prepping mid-century style for our final toast to Mad Men. On Sunday, April 5, bloggers from around the United States and three foreign countries will create a memorable Mad Men menu for our series finale’s Mad Men Virtual Dinner Party.

Our partygoers (listed here) — food, cocktail and lifestyle bloggers  — will mix martinis and craft canapés from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook or whip up another recipe that has appeared on Mad Men.

Thanks to our sponsors we have an amazing array of Mad Men prizes, including a dinner for four at Barbetta, the iconic New York Italian restaurant where Don and Bethany Van Nuys dined, and a two-night stay at Manhattan’s Roosevelt Hotel, frequented by Don and Sal. And many thanks to our publisher, BenBella, for providing books for all partygoers.

Blogger Prizes:

barbetta 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015Dinner for four at Barbetta, New York’s oldest Italian restaurant, where Don and Bethany Van Nuys dined. Founded in 1906 and operated to this day by the founder’s daughter Laura Maioglio, Barbetta specializes in northern Italian cuisine from the Piemonte region, Barbetta is the oldest Italian restaurant in New York still run by the founding family.

 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015A two night stay at New York’s Roosevelt Hotel, where Don relocated when he was having marital trouble, and where Sal orders a Campari when he meets Elliot from Belle Jolie Lipstick. A couple of nights at this landmark midtown hotel will place you right back in the Mad Men era.

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A gift certificate to  Grand Central Oyster Bar, where Don and Roger gorge on oysters and martinis for lunch. It’s an easy stroll from the mythical Madison Avenue offices of Sterling Cooper to this classic New York eatery.


Brownies from William Greenberg Desserts, Don and Meghan’s n06 brownies2B 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015gift when they visit Pete and Trudy’s Cos Cob home. For almost 70 years,  William Greenberg baked goods have been synonymous with good taste: “well bred and adventurous with a refined dazzle,” New York Magazine once said of Manhattan’s most famous brownies.

 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015A Year of Snacks from Utz Snacks, an early Sterling Cooper client. In 1962, Sterling Cooper hired Jimmy Barrett, a shock-comic, to do TV spots for Utz Potato Chips. Try Utz with our California Dip!

Russel Wright American Modern™ Pitcher and Tumblers and  #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015Fruit Bowls from Bauer Pottery. You’ll see Wright’s iconic designs on Mad Men.  Bauer Pottery of Los Angeles has the exclusive license to produce Russel Wright’s dinnerware – the most widely sold American ceramic dinnerware in history.

shaker1 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015WMFAmericas Bar Style Ice Scoops, Vino Basic Wine Sets and Loft Boston Shakers: Shake it Up Mad Men style with professional quality barware from WMF Americas. The Loft Boston Cocktail Shaker features modern European styling, their Wine Set includes a winged corkscrew, foil cutter and bottle stopper and the barstyle ice scoop features a durable stainless steel body with perforations that allow the excess water to drain away from the ice.Sunkist Sticker Logo OL 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015

A surprise gift from Sunkist, a client of Sterling Cooper and Partners.

scale 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015EatSmart Retro Kitchen Scale. A must for Betty Draper. Whether weighing for portion control, or measuring ingredients for your Pineapple Upside Down Cake, simply place food items directly into the Retro’s stainless steel mixing bowl for quick, accurate, easy-to-read measurements on the oversized dial.

Bormioli Rocco Selecta Decanter and Tumbler set. Whether you prefer bourbon or rye,  #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015imported or domestic, Bormioli Rocco, the Italian glassware company, has the perfect gift to complement your favorite whisky: a Selecta seven piece glassware set featuring a decanter and six tumblers.

basket1 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015Retro candy from Groovy Candies: Two groovy gift baskets featuring Mad Men client Hershey’s chocolates from Groovy Candies, an online candy retailer that carries Choward’s Violets  (seen on Mad Men) and an array of other nostalgic sweets,

 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child from Knopf: This is the classic cookbook, in its entirety—all 524 recipes, from America’s French Chef.

WhiskeyCocktails 150x150 #PartyLikeAMadman: Virtual Mad Men Finale Party April 5, 2015Whiskey Cocktails and Apothecary Cocktails by Warren Bobrow from Quartous Books: Two essential cocktail guides from Virtual Mad Men Finale Party Judge, Warren Bobrow (The Cocktail Whisperer).
to help you mix like Don and Roger.

Thank you to our Finale Blog Award Judges:

Evan Kleiman,  KCRW’s “Good Food” Host
Faith Durand, Executive Editor, The Kitchn
Warren Bobrow, author Whiskey Cocktails & Apothecary Cocktails
Arthur Bovino, Senior Editor, The Daily Meal
Kathy Gunst, Chef, NPR’s “Here and Now”
Leah Wilson, Editor-in-Chief, Benbella’s Smartpop! imprint
Joelle Delbourgo, Literary Agent
Nina Gallant, Food Photographer Catrine Kelty, Food Stylist

Celebrating Mad Men at the James Beard House

On September 11, the James Beard Foundation, which promotes the culinary arts andBHexterior 300x225 Celebrating Mad Men at the James Beard House America’s diverse culinary heritage, honored the food traditions of the Mad Men era, using The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook as a guide and invited us to join the party.  The historical venues of the 1960s-era  — some of New York’s most enduring and classy restaurants —  Keen’s Steakhouse, The ‘21’ Club, the Grand Central Oyster Bar, Delmonico’s, and P.J. Clarke’s – crafted the food and drink for this memorable evening. As Izabela Wojcik, Program Director for the James Beard Foundation put it, “this is food that never goes out of style.”

guests 300x224 Celebrating Mad Men at the James Beard House

Keens Steak House serve roast mutton to guests at the James Beard House “Mad About Mad Men” event.

We can’t imagine a more perfect setting for such an evening than James Beard’s home.  Beard, the literal and figurative giant who towered over the mid-20thcentury culinary scene, lived in the Greenwich Village townhouse that now bears his name. His cookbook collection lines the walls of a fireplaced living room; memorabilia of his extraordinary career as a chef and writer is everywhere, from his distinctive chef’s

jacket with its finely embroidered floral design to photos of him with Julia Child.

We had the privilege of watching as teams of consummate professionals went about the work of preparing a tasting dinner for 80 guests. Tables were set and chairs relayed up the four flights of stairs that wind though the narrow home. James Conley, the

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Keens Old Fashioneds along with the ingredients, and historic food memorabilia

service manager at Keens, spent hours meticulously muddling bitters, simple syrup and orange slices for Old Fashioneds. Dozens of oysters were shucked and martinis readied by the staff of the Grand Central Oyster Bar: their raw bar also featured clams, Shrimp Cocktail, and Bloody Mary Oyster Shooters. Izabela herself filled endive leaves with Waldorf Salad in the downstairs kitchen and Brian Carter, who now runs the bar at the original P.J. Clarke’s on Third Street, rimmed cocktail glasses with sugar for his Sidecars – one of our favorite cocktails in our book, made with cognac, Cointreau, orange and lemon juices. We imagine it was a bit like being behind the scenes at the Bolshoi just before the curtain goes up: a little bit of chaos followed by pure elegance once the show begins.

 Celebrating Mad Men at the James Beard House

Brian Carter of P. J. Clarke’s shakes up their classic Sidecar.

P.J. Clarke’s also served their legendary Miniature Cadillac Burgers with Smoked Country Bacon and Classic American Cheese along with Crispy Parmesan Tater Tots with Sir Kensington Classic Ketchup. (If you haven’t tried Sir Kensington’s Ketchup,  you must!) Delmonico’s offered their Famous Lobster Newburg and Oysters Diamond Jim Brady while the ’21’ Club served its signature Steak Diane and French 75s – champagne cocktails.

The chefs discussed James Beard’s influence on their careers: “Exploring all the variety of what we have to offer as Americans to the food culture of the world has been a great journey that still is not finished,” said P.J. Clarke’s chef Mike DeFonzo. “The legacy of James Beard is like a road map for me, as I wander off the guided path, I can always use his knowledge and writings to guide me back to the main road so I can wander again.”

It’s no easy feat, especially in New York City, for these restaurants to move the provisions and staff they need to participate in an event like this, especially since their

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Keens Steakhouse Executive Chef Bill Rodgers, who contributed to THE UNOFFICIAL MAD MEN COOKBOOK

establishments were all open for business that night. But Bill Rodgers, the Executive Chef at Keen’s who was carving Roasted Mutton with mint accompaniment, told us you simply don’t decline the opportunity to participate in a James Beard House event. And if it was an honor for these legendary New York restaurants, with histories dating back well over a century, to participate, we were doubly honored to share the evening with them, to taste recipes from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook brought to life by the best in the business, and

GCOB 150x150 Celebrating Mad Men at the James Beard House

The Grand Central Oyster Bar staff prep their raw bar.

to have our book recognized by The James Beard Foundation. Many thanks to all of the participating restaurants, chefs and the James Beard Foundation staff for this memorable evening.

A Mad Men Cocktail for The Great Gatsby Premiere

21 Classic Mint Julep 1024x682 A Mad Men Cocktail for The Great Gatsby Premiere

’21’ Classic Mint Julep

F. Scott Fitzgerald helped to popularize the Mint Juelp  – a bourbon and mint cocktail –  in The Great Gatsby. Tom, Daisy, Gatsby, Nick and Jordan cool off with a Mint Julep at New York’s Plaza Hotel on a hot day.

In the The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook, we included the recipe for Jane Sterling’s Mint Julep (season 3, episode 3 “My Old Kentucky Home”). As we wrote:

“Roger Sterling’s hedonism and lack of self-awareness are in full flower at the Kentucky Derby–themed garden party he and his new young wife Jane throw at an elegant Long Island country club. Guests mingle under the party tent and sip mint juleps in silver cups, Southern-style. Made up in blackface, and backed by a jazz band clad in straw boaters and Roaring Twenties–style red-and-white striped jackets, he sings ‘My Old Kentucky Home’ to Jane, the overt racism clearly lost on him and over Jane’s head. Later, Don and Betty Draper have to help Jane to her seat; she’s clearly had a few too many mint juleps.

“This classic Southern cocktail evokes the gentility of the South and hot, humid summer days passed on the porch of an elegant plantation-style home. For Betty, mint juleps were also the perfect refreshment to serve to the adults who accompany their children to Sally’s sixth birthday party (season 1, episode 3; “Marriage of Figaro”).

“The origins of the mint julep aren’t known, though legend has it that a Kentuckian boating on the Mississippi River stopped along the banks one day to pick fresh mint, which he then added to his bourbon and water mixture. An integral part of Kentucky culture, the mint julep is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby.

“This contemporary julep courtesy of the ‘21’ Club in Manhattan that features a delicious mint-infused simple syrup.”

21’ Club Mint Julep

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 1 drink

21 Classic Mint Julep A Mad Men Cocktail for The Great Gatsby Premiere

This refreshing, classic Mint Julep recipe from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook is courtesy of The ‘21’ Club in New York, New York and perfect for Gatsby gatherings.


  • Fresh mint leaves
  • 1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1 ounce Mint Simple Syrup (see recipe below)
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • *Mint Simple Syrup *
  • Bunch of fresh mint leaves
  • About 2 cups sugar
  • Boiling water


  1. To make the drink: In a Collins glass, muddle mint leaves in fresh lemon juice and Mint Simple Syrup.
  2. Fill glass with crushed ice and add bourbon. Stir. Garnish with a bruised mint leaf.
  3. To make the Mint Simple Syrup:Crush a goodly bunch of mint leaves in a quart container. Fill to halfway mark with sugar, then fill with boiling water. Stir well to dissolve sugar.
  4. Let mint steep while syrup cools. Strain. Let the syrup cool to room temperature and spoon it into a jar. Seal tight and store in refrigerator for up to three weeks.
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Mad Men Season 6 Premiere: From the Fire Pit to the Bowery Pot to the Fondue Pot

bh Mad Men Season 6 Premiere: From the Fire Pit to the Bowery Pot to the Fondue Pot

Meghan enjoys a Blue Hawaii on the beach in Waikiki

“The Doorway,” the premiere episode of Mad Men Season 6, opens in Hawaii, where Meghan is reaching for a Blue Hawaii (see our recipe), while sunbathing on the beach. She and Don are vacationing at Honolulu’s Royal Hawaiian, “The Pink Palace of the Pacific,” guests of Bob Grange of Sheraton Hotels, and his wife Patsy. The Royal Hawaiian opened in 1927 and sits on Waikiki beachfront. Sheraton purchased the hotel in 1959 and expanded it in the 1960s, when Hawaii tourism was booming. In 1968, just after the Draper’s December 1967 trip, Hawaii had its first million visitor year.

m hi waikiki royal 58090 300x202 Mad Men Season 6 Premiere: From the Fire Pit to the Bowery Pot to the Fondue Pot

1960s postcard from the Royal Hawaiian Hotel

The Granges introduce Don and Meghan to Hawaii’s “unique local flavor” with a luau. “The feast of the islands is the perfect expression of Hawaiian hospitality,” wrote Erma Meeks Boyen in The Hawaii Cookbook published in 1968. But food alone doesn’t make the luau: “It is the genial atmosphere of the music, flowers and colorful clothing and the lovely hula dancers that add to the romance of this time honored Hawaiian feast,” wrote Boyen.

Poipudding Mad Men Season 6 Premiere: From the Fire Pit to the Bowery Pot to the Fondue Pot

Poi pudding, a Hawaiian staple served at the Royal Hawaiian luau

“Everything you see in on your plate is what you find at a Royal Hawaiian Feast,” Don and Meghan’s luau host assures them. “The purple poi is pudding. It’s strange but satisfying,” he jokes.  “We say that it’s ono which means easy but you might just say ‘oh no!’”

Native Hawaiian poi, a pasty staple made from cooked taro root pounded to a smooth paste and mixed with water, or milk, is thought to be an acquired taste. (Bob cautions Don it tastes like “wallpaper paste.”) Hawaiians cook the starchy root in the imu or underground oven for hours. The Hawaii Cookbook suggests offering non-natives the Tahitian recipe of mixing poi with mashed banana.

The Hawaiian macaroni salad the Drapers sample is a staple of the Hawaii-style plate lunch, which accompanies meat and rice. The mayonnaise dressing is thinned with milk and flavored with sugar and vinegar. The pasta is very soft to help it absorb the sauce, and vegetables such as carrots and celery are added for crunch.

The traditional luau pig, or Kalua pig, is filled with hot rocks and covered with banana leaves, then lowered into the imu where it’s steamed with bananas and sweet potatoes surrounding it. No wonder this “sensory” experience stayed with Don when he created his ad campaign, “Hawaii. The Jumping Off Point.”

Meanwhile, back in New York, Betty is helping squatters in the Lower East Side’s St. Mark’s Place make a pot of goulash with pork butt, onion, lentils and paprika, a communal dish in keeping with the spirit of St. Mark’s Place. The street, named for progressive St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, was host to a community of anti-establishment young people and students in the 1960s.

One of our favorite recipes (coming soon) is Szekely Goulash, made with pork, from the classic 1960s Hungarian Family Cookbook by Jolie Gabor, mother of Eva and Zsa Zsa. Goulash, the best-known Hungarian meat dish, is a stew of meat, noodles and vegetables seasoned with spices. It dates to the Hungarian Magyar tribes’ migration around 600 AD, when herdsman, gathered around an open fire and for their meal, combined meat and vegetables over campfires. “There is no  Mad Men Season 6 Premiere: From the Fire Pit to the Bowery Pot to the Fondue Potstandard method nor precise ingredients for making goulash,” wrote Gabor. “With the Hungarian fondness for creation and originality, much has been added to make this hearty meal, the most inspired of which was Hungarian paprika. It is judicious blending of Hungarian paprika to the goulash that makes it such a superb dish.”

Also seen on Mad Men last night: Betty and Sally’s friend Sandy enjoy a late night snack of Ritz Crackers with peanut butter.

The buttery crackers (the slogan during the late 60s was “no matter how hard you try, you just can’t disguise that beautiful buttery Ritz taste.”) were named, according to the manufacturer, Nabisco, to conjure wealth and affluence when they were introduced during the Great Depression. Mad Men Season 6 Premiere: From the Fire Pit to the Bowery Pot to the Fondue Pot

And, of course, there was the fondue. Meghan hosts a fondue party that includes Dr. Arnold Rosen and his wife Sylvia, serving cheese fondue (see our post and recipe), followed by chocolate fondue for dessert, with her new fondue pot from Bloomingdale’s kitchen store.

Mad Men Premiere Recipe: Dipping into Season 6 with Classic Cheese Fondue

 Mad Men Premiere Recipe: Dipping into Season 6 with Classic Cheese Fondue

Classic Cheese Fondue Recipe (image and recipe from Better Homes and Gardens Fondue and Tabletop Cooking (Meredith, 1970)

We’ve been expecting to see some fondue on Mad Men —  it is the late1960’s after all — and are happy to know that we’ll be doing some dunking to kick off the season.

Meghan Calvet Draper takes on fondue in tonight’s Season 7 premiere. Her recipe secret: rubbing the pot with a clove of garlic and doubling the amount of Kirschwasser.

“Out of a fervent desire to utilize hardened cheese, the Swiss concocted a mouth-watering cheese-wine mixture,” wrote the editors of Better Homes and Gardens Fondue and Tabletop Cooking (Meredith, 1970). Dunking small pieces of bread, vegetables and meat into hot cheese wine sauce quickly became one of the hottest food fads of the late 1960s

“Now is the time of the fondue,” wrote Jean Hewitt her 1969 New York Times article, “For Dips or Dinners, Fondue Is Popular.”

“Supper or dinner may well turn out to be a communal dunking-pot affair,” added Hewitt. “These days, brides-to-be are counting up the number of duplicate fondue pots and forks they receive as they used to tick off silver compotes.”

Enthusiasm for fondue cooking generated a slew of cookbooks, including The Gold Medal Fondue Cookbook, also published in 1970. According to author Marie Roberson Hamm, fondue in the “Age of Aquarius” was “a culinary game for young partiers, one that can level all company to a state of euphoria. Who can resist the fun of dunking their merry way through a fondue meal? It pleases men as much if not perhaps little bit more than women.”

Will it please both the men and women of Mad Men tonight?

For our recipe, adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Fondue and Tabletop Cooking (Meredith, 1970), we heeded Meghan’s suggestion of rubbing the pot with garlic.  If you’d like to use Kirschwasser, a cherry brandy commonly used in Swiss fondue recipes, substitute 1 tablespoon of sauterne with  tablespoon with Kirschwasser.

(For a  premiere cocktail recipe, see our Blue Hawaii).

We look forward to sharing  food and drink highlights of the new season of Mad Men along with culinary history and recipes!

Classic Cheese Fondue

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 10 servings (as appetizer)

 Mad Men Premiere Recipe: Dipping into Season 6 with Classic Cheese Fondue

Classic Cheese Fondue recipe, as seen on Mad Men Season 6 premiere, dapted from Better Homes and Gardens Fondue and Tabletop Cooking (Meredith, 1970),


  • 12 ounces natural Swiss cheese, shredded
  • 4 ounces Gruyère cheese, shredded
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 clove garlic, halved
  • 1 cup white wine, such as sauterne (see note)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Dash of ground nutmeg
  • Dash of ground black pepper
  • Dippers: French or Italian bread, hard rolls, boiled potatoes, cooked chicken shrimp or ham, cherry tomatoes, cooked artichokes, carrot slices, cooked mushroom, celery or green pepper pieces. (see note)


  1. Combine cheese with cornstarch in a bowl. Rub inside of heated saucepan with garlic and discard garlic. Pour in sauterne and lemon juice. Warm till air bubbles rise and cover surface. Do not cover or allow to boil. Stir vigorously and constantly from now on.
  2. Add half of the cheese, keeping heat to medium, but not boiling the mixture. When melted add the remaining half of the cheese. After cheese is blended and bubbling, add nutmeg and pepper, stirring continuously.
  3. Quickly transfer to fondue pot; keep warm over fondue burner. If fondue becomes too thick, add a little warmed sauterne. Spear bread cube with fondue fork piercing crust last. Dip bread into fondue and swirl to coat. It’s important to swirl keep fondue in motion. Also keep the cheese bubbly over the fondue burner. It shouldn’t be too hot or it will become stringy, nor should it be too cool or it will become tough.


Sauterne is a dry to semi-sweet white wine. If you’d like to use Kirschwasser, a cherry brandy commonly used in Swiss fondue recipes, substitute 1 tablespoon of sauterne with 1 tablespoon with Kirschwasser.

All dippers should be bite-sized and each bread cube should have a crust. To estimate how many dippers are needed, consider appetites and accompanying dishes. Generally 1 large loaf of bread serves 6-8. Any cooked meats and vegetables dippers are served warm.

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Aloha Mad Men: Toast Season 6 with a Blue Hawaii

We’re counting down the days to thhawaii Aloha Mad Men: Toast Season 6 with a Blue Hawaiie Season 6 Mad Men premiere on April 7.  Given the promotional images of Don and Meghan lounging on a beach in Hawaii – Meghan with blue drink in hand —  we chose to toast the new season with the Blue Hawaii cocktail. This tropical concoction made its Mad Men debut in Season 4, Episode 3 (“The Good News”), when Joan Harris prepares a Hawaiian-themed New Year’s Eve dinner for husband Greg shortly before he deploys to Vietnam.

DSC 0006 300x274 Aloha Mad Men: Toast Season 6 with a Blue Hawaii

Blue Hawaii from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook, courtesy of Holly Korus (

A popular cocktail in the 1960s, the Blue Hawaii, grew out of Americans’ infatuation with the nation’s newest state. Curaçao is a liqueur made from the oil of dried laharas orange peels grown on the Caribbean island of Curaçao. The oranges aren’t blue, of course. Colorants are used to make blue, orange, yellow and green curaçao.

Though named for the Aloha State, the Blue Hawaii is not truly of Hawaiian origin. The Bols liquor company, maker of blue curaçao, was looking for a way to increase sales of the product and asked a bartender at Waikiki’s Hawaiian Village Hotel to come up with a cocktail that would parlay Hawaii’s popularity into revenues.

Aloha, Season 6!

Recipe from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook (SmartPop, 2011).
Adapted from Sippin’ Safari: In Search of the Great “Lost” Tropical Drink Recipes and the People Behind Them by Jeff Berry (SLG Publishing, 2007) and Gourmet Magazine (June, 1969).

Joan’s Blue Hawaii

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 1 drink

DSC 0006 Aloha Mad Men: Toast Season 6 with a Blue Hawaii


  • 3 ounces pineapple juice
  • 1 ½ ounces light rum
  • 1 ounce sweet and sour mix (see recipe for homemade sweet and sour mix)
  • 1 ounce Blue Curaçao
  • 1 ounce lemon juice
  • 1 small cube fresh pineapple, plus a wedge for garnish
  • 1 maraschino cherry, for garnish
  • Homemade Sweet and Sour Mix
  • ¾ cup water
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup fresh lime juice


  1. To make the drink: In the container of a blender, mix pineapple juice, rum, sweet and sour mix, blue Curaçao, lemon juice and small cube of pineapple. Add ½ cup crushed ice and blend.
  2. Pour into a punch glass and garnish with a cherry and a small wedge of fresh pineapple.
  3. To make the Homemade Sweet and Sour Mix: Combine water and sugar in medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to boil. Remove from heat and cool.
  4. In a pitcher, combine syrup, lemon juice and lime juice. Refrigerate until cold.
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