Entertaining, Our Parties

Survive Winter with This Après Ski-Inspired Party

Weekend warriors, this one’s for you. If your idea of “surviving winter” is skipping hibernation and heading outside, hello. You are one of us.

Netflix and chill can make for a perfectly nice night an all. But the best way to spend endless weeks of chilly evenings is wrapped in layers of arctic gear, hitting the slopes for solid days of pow, then settling in with the crew for mellow evenings spiked with hot toddy's and hearty eats.

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It’s Ski Season, Snow Bunnies. Which means... it’s also Après Ski Season. That laid back after-party that is more about gathering than it is entertaining. A mantra we’re always happy to welcome with open arms.

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Perhaps what makes the long, low-key days of winter particularly nice is the ease of it all. When the only thing on the schedule is “ski," no one arrives after expecting perfection. They just need a place to defrost fingers and toes, a hot mug of something sweet, and warm bodies ready to hear stories from the days adventures.

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So, nix the invitations. Forget any need for decorations. Send a text, “Saturday, 10 AM slopes, 4 PM soup?” Then see who can make it for a ski and post-ski powwow.

Plus ones welcome. Couples or singles. Friends. Friends of friends. Whoever shows has a place at this table. Because the Apres Ski table isn’t set with formality. It’s framed with ski boots and scarves, flanked friends new and old. If you like soup and bourbon, you’re in.

Keep It Simple Cocktails

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The Chai West

theinspiredhome.com
SERVINGS

1 drink

INGREDIENTS
  • 2/3 cup prepared chai mix
  • 3 Tbsp half and half
  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 2 oz butterscotch liqueur
  • Cinnamon stick or ground cinnamon (optional)
  • Anise star (optional)
DIRECTIONS
  1. Heat chai and half and half just until steaming in a large pot or skillet. 
  2. Add bourbon and butterscotch.
  3. If desired, garnish with cinnamon and anise. Enjoy warm.

A Table Set for Simplicity

For a truly perfect evening, drop all frills and embrace the basics. Invite guests to BYOT (Bring Your Own Thermos), which they can fill at will with the hot toddy above. Or drink from sturdy enamelware - which can also be packed in the back of a truck for end-of-slope sips. 

For on-the-spot refills, keep Kikkerland adventure flasks close buy, filled with your with your favorite spirits, of course.

A mellow menu makes après ski gatherings all the more enjoyable. Everyone will be starving. So serve food. That’s it. You don’t have to overdo it.

For our Saturday ski party, we decided to pull together a superquick Sausage Kale & Potato Soup. The sausage, potato and broth were all cooked the evening before. Then chopped kale was added while we pulled off skis and prepped the cocktails. 

The recipe proved perfect. It filled a big Staub Cocotte and served 11 of us, with more than enough to go back for seconds.

For sides, we offered up gluten-free cornbread with a variety of toppings. But you could keep it extra easy and supplement with store bought rolls and butter, too. 

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Guests were invited to bring a batch of their favorite cookies. Something easy enough to make the night before, and everyone gladly showed up with a couple dozen favorite sweets to share. Added bonus: no plates or napkins required, so could get away with a simple place setting - bowls and salad plates by Gibson made a handsome match for the event. 

Sausage, Kale & Potato Chowder

A classic soup, with flavors everyone loves. Hearty Italian sausage, creamy potatoes, carrots and kale make for a beautiful bowl of hearty soup. Delicious at the end of a long winter day. Pairs nicely with a rustic loaf of bread.

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Sausage Kale & Potato Chowder

theinspiredhome.com
SERVINGS

12

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup chopped purple onion
  • 2 pounds mild Italian Sausage
  • 8-10 medium red potatoes, diced
  • 1 ½ cups sliced carrots
  • 64 oz chicken broth
  • 1 can coconut milk (full fat)
  • 1 bunch chopped  kale, stems removed
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
DIRECTIONS
  1. In a large cast-iron pot, melt olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and onion, cook until aromatic. Add sausage and brown until cooked through.
  2. Add potatoes, carrots, and broth. Bring to a boil, cook until potatoes are tender.
  3. Add coconut milk and kale. Cook on medium-high, just until kale is tender, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Salt and pepper to taste.
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Show Us Your Ski Party

Hosting your own winter bash? We’d love if you’d invite us inside! Post a picture on Instagram and show us how you celebrate ski season. Don’t forget to tag us @theinspiredhome_com #INSPIREDhome

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