For New Year’s Day Brunch, you need two beverage stations: One station is for coffee and tea, the other is for cold beverages (a.k.a. alcohol).
While it’s fun to create and serve a signature drink, for New Year’s Day I like to keep it simple. Really good, spicy Bloody Marys with extra Tabasco on the side and good champagne with fresh orange juice for Mimosas. This gives people options. If they have been drinking champagne into the wee hours the night before, they will probably want a Bloody Mary at brunch. If they weren’t out drinking, they will toast New Year’s Day with champagne. If they don’t drink alcohol, the fresh orange juice is perfect with the array of delicious food.
These are simple drinks but please use the best ingredients. The Bloody Mary mix I like is Lefty O’Doul’s. It has no high fructose corn syrup (who needs the extra sugar?) and has a great flavor. Taste the orange juice before you buy it for the party. You will be surprised at the differences in the flavor of the various orange juice available at your local supermarket.
The bar was organized, so people could help themselves. I included chilled bottles of sparkling water for thirsty guests. As you can see from the photos, I set-up rows of glasses so the bar was complete.
The coffee station was near the buffet and again set-up for complete self service. Lots of mugs, pitches of milk, cream, various sugars and faux sugars, and thermos-like insulated pitches for coffee and tea.
Once the beverage stations were fully stocked, I’ve only had to check them once in a while to replenish if necessary, and it made for smooth service at the party.