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Hosting a holiday party? Offer up a Monaco cocktail

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The Monaco

Sparkling lemonade

Pilsner beer

Pomegranate juice or Grenadine syrup (about 2 tablespoons)

Fill a highball glass about 1/3 the way with sparkling lemonade. Top with beer, stopping a couple of inches from the top. Top with grenadine syrup or pomegranate juice. Stir to combine. Serve.

Updated: January 12, 2014 6:18AM



No one wants to play bartender at a holiday party. There are fancily dressed guests to attend to, a crackling fireplace to sit beside, and the jazzy jingles and bells of the holiday music is beckoning just one dance.

The last thing you’d want is to get your hands sticky with the leaky shakers from dozens of mixed cocktail requests.

Keep the holiday spirits simple. Many party planners suggest beer, wine and just one cocktail. The struggle, then, comes from winnowing out one classic holiday cocktail; but in reality, it’s sort of a fun struggle.

It should be festive, utilize at least one flavor of the season, and look pretty, too.

While heavier cocktails are certainly appropriate for the cold (think Tom and Jerry), many grandiose parties warrant a lighter drink. The perfect holiday cocktail comes from the French.

The Monaco, which is a popular summer beverage for young French socialites, is an even better holiday spritzer. It’s light, sparkly and has the flavor of winter mixed right in to it.

A classic Monaco is prepared with sparkling French lemonade — the kind that comes in a bottle with a cork — beer, and grenadine. However, substitute pomegranate juice for the grenadine and your pink shandy becomes alive with the holiday spirit.

Monacos are a little like Champagne spritzers, but not as sweet. But that’s sort of a welcoming trait, especially when most holiday parties are loaded with so much sugar that it hurts your teeth.

The depth of a Pilsner beer opens up the drink, and the level of sweetness can be adjusted with the amount of lemonade and pomegranate juice you mix in.

One of the greatest assets of serving up Monacos at your holiday party — and one that is probably most often overlooked — is the neatness of this drink. No mixers, no jiggers, no ice, and no dirty hands.

They mix up quick and leave no mess behind. Try mixing up several at once and handing them to your holiday guests upon arrival.



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