A lifestyle blog from allen + roth

A lifestyle blog from allen + roth

 

FOOD + ENTERTAINING

How to throw a winning Triple Crown party

May 18, 2016

Following The Kentucky Derby festivities, horse racing enthusiasts have two more reasons to throw a Triple Crown-themed party this season -- The Preakness Stakes on May 21 in Maryland followed by The Belmont Stakes June 11 in New York.


Both events offer ample opportunity to host a celebration of tried-and-true tradition mixed and creative flair with an exciting backdrop of the famous races. 
Of course, you can take bets on winning horses to amp up the suspense. And encourage your guests to don their festive hats, colorful dresses and preppy blazers. But there are many other ways to host a stellar get-together. From choice beverages to the ideal food spread, here are a few tips to keep your racing party on track.


Official Race Cocktails
Come out of the gate at your race party serving the officially designated Preakness and Belmont cocktails, which with their strong liquor base and classy look are on par with the Kentucky Derby’s famed mint julep.
 The official drink of the Belmont is the Belmont Breeze, a whiskey-based drink of while the official Preakness drink is called the Black-eyed Susan in honor of the Maryland state flower.​

Belmont Breeze:

1.5 oz Bourbon Whiskey
2 oz Lemonade
1 oz Pomegranate Juice (or Cranberry)
Garnish with a slice of lemon or a cherry.

The Black-eyed Susan:

1.5 oz vodka
1 oz Bourbon
2 oz orange juice
2 oz sour mix or pineapple juice
​Add an orange slice and a cherry for garnish.

Festive Food Ideas
Of course, every racing party should have a good cheese plate with Brie, gouda, blue cheese and assorted cheddar. But you can get specific when it comes to the food for each race’s theme.


For Preakness parties, go for traditional Maryland dishes. Lump crab cakes, whether in small appetizer form or full servings, are a must-have -- the more fresh crab meat in these patties, the better.

Chesapeake Oysters, while a bit on the expensive side, are also ideal for a Preakness celebration. For more affordable Maryland flair, add the state’s favorite spice – Old Bay seasoning – to just about anything, from French fries to popcorn.


For Belmont parties, you could serve traditional New York fare such as pastrami, strip steaks, Waldorf salads or Italian Sausage. Or serve traditional horse racing desserts like pecan pies or bourbon balls.

Add a Touch of Finish-Line Flowers
For a Preakness-themed party, decorate with Black-eyed Susan flowers or a similar yellow bouquets reminiscent of the yellow floral wreath the winning horse dons. 


Meanwhile, the white carnation, said to symbolize luck and love, is the official flower of the Belmont Stakes with winning horse is draped with a 40-pound blanket of 700 carnations. Try adding a few white carnations in Mason Jars around your food buffet.

Other Triple Crown Décor Touches

Finally, cross the finish line in your party planning by including splashes of horse-racing themed decorations. Try to incorporate silver into your table settings, whether though a silver serving platter reminiscent of the Belmont trophy bowl or silver vases in salute to the Preakness’ Woodlawn Vase trophy. Or, add silver touches though utensils or napkin holders. 

And search for innovative ways to incorporate the “horse” theme, whether with horseshoe coasters, cupcakes decorated with horse silhouettes or white-and-black checkered flags.