Last weekend we hosted some people from my husband’s work for a little late afternoon cocktail party. While he set up the bar on the deck, I put together some snacks. I didn’t have a lot of time, so I went for colorful and easy: crudite and several dips, cheeses garnished with fresh herbs, dates, sliced baguette, crackers, nuts, and fresh fruit. I also made a couple sheets of my Zucchini Puff Pastry Bites and a guest brought some beautiful pastries from the farmer’s market. I filled my vintage bottles with different alcohols and mixers, each marked with tags I got at Staples. In addition to an ice bucket full of beer and Cultivate Wines (which I love for the company’s commitment to giving back), I mixed up some Berry Fizzes to pass out, each garnished with a cute paper straw (purchased on Amazon). As the sun went down, we lounged on blankets and played bocce ball…overall, a dreamy and golden afternoon outdoors!

Photos, recipes and illustrations by Erin Gleeson for The Forest Feast