Holiday Entertaining:
3 Terrific Themes to Make Your Party Stand Out!


Holiday party season is here! Office parties, friends get-togethers and family gatherings. So many parties, so little time! Same old food, same tacky punch.

So how do you make your party stand out? I asked my good friends and creative partners, Brittany Ferrin, CEO of Truffleberry Market, and Christine Janda from Christine Janda Design & Events to help you out. Together, we have come up with three exciting holiday theme parties pairing great food, specialty drinks, beautiful decor and fantastic music to insure your party is the one everyone is talking about this season!

Tropical Holiday Theme Party

I don’t know about you, but after the first snow, I am already fantasizing about a island vacation. So I thought, why not start with that idea right now and host a “Tropical Christmas Vacation” party!

Since the music sets the tone and ambiance for every party, I’m thinking a Steel Drum Trio. Imagine the music you hear when you are on a cruise ship. It sounds refreshingly breezy and happy! The Steel Drum Trio, dressed in floral island shirts and crisp white pants playing your favorite songs and holiday tunes with a tropical twist. What a fun surprise for your guests!

For an easy and whimsical décor piece you can make yourself, Christine suggests taking the iconic fruit of vacation, the pineapple, and jazz it up for this holiday celebration. The photo uses fresh cut limes, but you could top with ornaments or shimmery garland for more holiday pizazz. Your guests won’t stop smiling.


Next, the libations – obviously a very important component to the success of any party! Brittany came up with a signature drink she calls “The Naked Mule” (a take-off on one of my favorite drinks, the Moscow Mule): Coconut Water, Ginger Beer, Premium Vodka, Fresh Lime, Agave. Oh my – so tasty!

With your drink in hand, you can munch on these delicious Hors D’oeuvres:

  • Lobster Corndogs
  • Mango Salsa Shrimp Taco minis
  • Ahi Tuna Watermelon bites

Brittany’s food station features:

  • Mango Avocado Papaya Slaw with Jicama,
  • Spiced Pumpkin Seeds and Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
  • Grilled Pineapple + Ginger BBQ Pork Tenderloin and Chimmichurri Black Rice

And lastly you have to end with some of Brittany’s delicious sweets:

  • Banana Rum Cheesecake Brulee
  • Toasted Coconut Soak Cake
  • Key Lime Bon Bons

I don’t know about you, but I am totally feeling transported to my island vacation!

Mad Men Theme Party

If you are entertaining your male friends and colleagues, try a
“Manly Meaty and Moody Theme Party”!

“Chitarra” would be the perfect music to set the tone for this party. Three talented, good-looking men playing guitar, cello & violin performing Jazz, Top 40, Hip Hop, Rock Classics, and Holiday music.

To tame the manly beast, try another one of Brittany’s signature drinks: The “New Fashioned”:
Spiced Rum, Blood Orange Juice, Cardamom Syrup, Bitters and Soda Water.

For your table décor Christine suggests using “Snow” which can be found in your craft store to accent any pillar candles you currently have at home. A few sprays of silver paint and voila – Christmas chic!


Brittany likes a plated dinner for this group featuring:

  • Winter Greens with Grilled Persimmon + Parmesan fluff,
    Crispy Prosciutto, Pickled Shallots and Spiced Pistachios
  • Duck Confit Ravioli
  • Lamb Porterhouse
  • Melted Leek Heirloom Polenta
  • Minted Pea Smash
  • Wagyu Filet Mignon
  • Caramelized French Onion Au Gratin Potatoes
  • Roasted Rainbow Carrots + Popped Sorghum, Brown Butter

And for Dessert: Dark Chocolate + Candied Bacon Truffle Cake
Absolutely delicious!!! What man wouldn’t love this menu!

New Years’ Eve Party

Now we are into the home stretch and the party everyone waits for all year long – New Years’ Eve! This night is all about Sparkles and Bubbles. And what could be more sparkly and bubbly than The CoverGirls Rock Violin Show entertaining your guests!

For New Years, Christine’s favorite entertaining trick is to use what you already have! The pine is still smelling divine in your house and you have glitz and garland galore. Just pluck fresh pine, shimmering ornaments and glittering details right from your tree. Add to your favorite cake stand or bowl and you have an instant centerpiece.

So easy! And to think, I can make this myself!


This party demands lots of champagne and Brittany suggests this dazzling addition to the bubbly: St Germaine, Pomegranate juice and a frozen pomegranate seed garnish to make it stand out!

Serve your guests these amazing bites all night and they will never want to leave:

  • Molten Brie + Fig Jam with Lambic reduction
  • Prosecco Poached Pear + Gorgonzola Fondue Crepes
  • Parmesan Panna Cotta with Nicoise Olive Pesto + Olive Oil Focaccia
  • One Bite Lyonnaise salad with Poached Quail Egg + Pancetta Lardon served in Crispy Parmesan Cups
  • Beluga Caviar + Himalayan Pink Salt Potato Crisp, Vodka tossed frisee
  • Black Truffle Risotto Fritto
  • Savory Smores

I hope these party themes inspire you to celebrate to the fullest! If you don’t have time to cook or decorate, contact Brittany at and Christine at They will make your life easier and your party a huge success.

Wishing you and your loved ones a very happy holiday season!

Becky Cagen