above: Get ready to have your spirits lifted this holiday season. – Photographs by Venera Alexandrova
STACEY ORRECHIO TAKES THE PARTY ON THE ROAD—STRAIGHT TO YOU
Cocktail party season’s in full swing, and the excellent selection of caterers and food trucks in our area makes it easier than ever to host. Stacey Orrechio, a former corporate events planner, noticed the food truck trend and decided to roll out a business focusing on the drinks side of the party equation. “The idea was to elevate the experience by bringing in talented bartenders and a fun mobile bar trailer offering drink specials and cocktails,” says Stacey. “We’re taking it to a higher level than what’s typically offered by a caterer.” Her new mobile drinks biz, LIFTED SPRITS, delivers bar service on demand, which includes liability insurance, all of the alcohol, drink signs, mixers, everything you need.
On the road for just over a year, Lifted Spirits has raised the bar at events such as in-home parties, private school fundraisers, Fashion Week launch parties, art openings, Harbor Fest and Moffly Media’s Best Bartenders event, among many others. When Stacey donated a two-hour happy hour for a school fundraiser auction, it got the highest bid of the night’s items. She typically works with clients to create a signature drink for each event, using a set base such as Tito’s vodka or Casamigos tequila. Stacey can plan for a margarita bar, Bloody Mary bar, Bellini bar and other special drinks depending on the event, like her Gin & Chronic, a G&T laced with drops of a flavored CBD on top. Lifted Spirits serves mocktails, too. For bar and bat mitzvahs, they mix up milkshakes and signature mocktails, as well as boozy milkshakes for adults if they choose. Basic pricing is per person—$10 per person per hour for events of less than fifty people and $8 per person per hour for parties of fifty and more.
What Stacey enjoys most about her work: “Being creative with every different event is fun for us. Our tagline is ‘party more, work less, get lifted.’ It’s nice to see people get to be a guest at their own party.”
JOCELYN’S HOMEMADE IRISH CREAM
1 Teaspoon Instant Coffee
1 Teaspoon Coconut Extract (may substitute with Vanilla Extract)
1 Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 Tablespoon Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup
1 Cup Jameson Whiskey
2 Cups Heavy Cream
In a bowl, beat eggs, instant coffee and coconut extract. Add sweetened condensed milk and Hershey’s Syrup. Beat for thirty seconds. Add whiskey and beat for thirty seconds. Pour mixture into a blender and add two cups of heavy cream and blend for twenty seconds. Pour into festive glass bottles and keep refrigerated for up to fourteen days.
Keep your crowd in mind and stick to no more than one or two signature drinks. Stacey likes “The Class Mom,” a very low sugar Tito’s mojito with lime and club soda.
To create a more flavorful, sophisticated cocktail without adding sugar, consider infused spirits. Norwalk-based Teroforma makes 1pt tea infusions that add complexity, like the Tahitian Vanilla spice or Marrakech blend with rose and hibiscus, to put an interesting twist into vodka or gin. teroforma.com
“An element of surprise makes things memorable,” says Stacey, who recalls the time clients hired a Trump impersonator to visit the party.
Depending on the size of the gathering, it’s nice to send guests home with a small memento. After Stacey’s holiday parties and her family’s Christmas Eve, everyone receives a bottle of her mom’s homemade Baileys. She says, “It’s amazing alone or with coffee on Christmas morning.”