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The perfect new year party according to… Yannick Van Dyck (Negroni)

A good aperitif and a casual atmosphere and the party has started for Yannick Van Dyck. On his blog, Negroni, he limited himself mainly to the beverage, but for this series, he works an evening feestmenu. To thumbs and fingers-licking good!

Aperitivo Julep, recipe below © Negroni / Yannick Van Dyck

What do you find important in a new year party?

Atmosphere! I enjoy twice as hard delicious food and drink as the atmosphere is good. A while ago, on a trip in Mexico, I was invited for a feast in the small mountain village of Ejutla. When we arrived, were the women of the family for a few hours before the fire, and the men had a two hour driven to a hi-fi to rent. Among the largest and most beautiful tree of the village stood a beautifully decorated wonderful festive table. Two aunts had cocktails made with a matching snack. The dishes and the cocktails that we got were nothing special, but I enjoyed it as if it were a sterrenzaak was.

A few days later we went to the most famous cocktail bar in Mexico City, top 15 in the world. The cocktails that we had were not wrong, but the atmosphere was much less jovial than a few days earlier in Ejutla. I have much more enjoyed the cocktails that the aunts from the village for us had prepared, than of the cocktails from the world-famous bar. A beautiful proof that atmosphere of a festival can make or break something.

What should really not be missing on the table?

© Negroni / Yannick Van Dyck

A good aperitif! A successful appetizer is not only delicious, it opens up your stomach and your senses for the rest of the meal. Do not choose heavy or sweet ingredients, and certainly not to excess, that connect the stomach instead of to open them. You choose better for a fresh, slightly bitter cocktail with a little bite to it.

In general, I am not the biggest fan of cocktails with sparkling wine, but on a new year party fits. Use a good product as a basis, but you don’t need to go straight to the most expensive champagne to intervene.

What do you want this year, certainly not to see at parties?

The mistakenly served Gin & Tonic! The Gin & Tonic is definitely not the most original appetizer, but there is not wrong with that, provided he is properly served.

That is not to say that you have fifteen minutes to work to ‘m good. I will still prefer a G&T as he was 10 years ago, was brought in, than one in a ballonglas with melted ice, flat tonic and a half a garden of botanicals that do not fit with the gin. Botanicals can certainly be of value for a Gin & Tonic, but make sure they are complementary with the flavors and aromas of the gin. Don’t forget the most important rule: do not overdo it!

Delivers meals to organize you stress? (And what do you do to counter?)

Dinners organize can indeed be stressful. A little bit of healthy stress is also not much, just want to say that you want to do good. But it should be fun to continue. It is no fun if the hostess or lord there is nothing and the whole evening absent.

The best way to avoid stress is a good preparation. Put in advance everything ready, make ready beforehand what in advance can be made, and make for a clean workplace. The ultimate stress-free feestcocktail is a punch. You can punch in full in advance and you can ‘m in a punch bowl with a large block of ice on the table. You don’t even have to worry that your guests thirst, because they can easily refill.

You have a fixed feesttraditie?

The holidays are when many people in the character of the family. Also in my family there is since several years a fun tradition. My partner is going ice skating with the children and I make sure that there is a filling dessert on the table when they get home.

I’m still looking for an original dessert, which I know that the children big eyes. I create, there’s always a great form of. Last year I made a large chocolate bread in the shape of a christmas tree. For one time in the year is the sumptuous dessert is usually the main meal. Between Christmas and new year, I also try to always have a few days off to take, the children find it very fun to get together with me a cocktail to make. Or a mocktail in their case. Also that is has become a tradition.

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Yannicks feestmenu

A feestmenu always start with a good appetizer. I choose the Aperitivo Julep. This cocktail has a low alcohol content and is therefore ideal for the excesses of the holidays to avoid. The traditional Julep Cups in which this type of cocktail is served will also immediately make an impression on your guests. Especially if you make for a beautiful garnish. The nice thing is that this cocktail can create with ingredients that are easy in the supermarket to find. The slightly bitter taste of the cocktail will the stomach open for the feast, but he is sweet enough to be accessible.

Ingredients: 6 cl Forest Dry Vermouth 2,5 cl Amaro Montenegro 1 bar spoon Crème de pêche (peach liquor) garnish: mint, blue berries and powdered sugar

© Negroni / Yannick Van Dyck

Preparation: Fill a Julep Cup half way with crushed ice and pour all the ingredients in there. Stir this as well. Fill the cup with crushed ice and stir until a nice layer of ice on the cup. Add some extra crushed ice to make it a mountain is on top of the cocktail and work the cocktail with a nice sprig of mint, a few berries and some icing sugar.

I choose Forest, Dry Vermouth, a Belgian vermouth, as a basis. This vermouth offers a nice complexity that fits in well with the other ingredients. Amaro Montenegro is an accessible bitterlikeur, which is not only bitter taste but also some fresh and sweetly of tangerines. This amaro is also very good, along with peach liquor. The brands that I use are available in the supermarket where I do my groceries do. If your grocery store these brands do not have you can also for other brands opt.

As a garnish I use mint, which is very specific to a Julep. In the summer I would have this cocktail to further garnish with a slice of fresh peach, but unfortunately it is now not the season of the peach. To replace the slice of peach, I use blue berries, available year round. A layer of powdered sugar on the coin provides for an appropriate christmas spirit, a bit like snow on the christmas tree.

A tasty snack or voorgerechtje that beautifully complements this cocktail is grilled oysters with bacon. Cut smoked bacon into fine pieces and fry them until golden brown. Take some pieces of bacon as garnish for the oysters and add the rest with the dry vermouth that you use for the cocktail. Add some cream and let it reduce. Remove this sauce from the fire, mix in some butter and add some pepper and salt. Grill the oysters until they open. Cut them loose, but keep them in the oyster shells. Add the sauce and garnish with the uitgehaalde bacon and some fine chopped parsley. A simple but delicious Surf & Turf.

As a main course, I also like something that is easy to digest, such as brill in champagne sauce. Recently I saw a nice feestrecept of Johan Segers: grilled brill, braised chicory and shrimps. I’m actually not the biggest fan of braised chicory, but if you are preparing such as Johan Segers, than lust I the.

For the dessert I go to the children trying to score with a chocolate-oatmeal pancakes, topped with a scoop of Oreo ice cream. For the adults is a part of that, of course, also a good digestive. I am a big fan of the Espresso Martini. You can have this cocktail very easy to make with some vodka, coffee liqueur and espresso. But Hannah Van Ongevalle taught me a nice prescription old gin, amaretto and hazelnotenlikeur to have some extra depth to the cocktail. I love it!

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