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updated: 3/20/2012 2:49 PM

Party like 'Mad': Toast Don Draper's return with classic cocktails

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  • Don Draper would no doubt approve of this classic martini made with gin and vermouth.

      Don Draper would no doubt approve of this classic martini made with gin and vermouth.
    Associated Press photo

  • An Old Fashion cocktail made with rye is a great sipper for the return of AMC's "Mad Men."

      An Old Fashion cocktail made with rye is a great sipper for the return of AMC's "Mad Men."
    Associated Press photo

  • A cheese ball is so retro -- and therefore perfect for your "Mad Men" party.

      A cheese ball is so retro -- and therefore perfect for your "Mad Men" party.
    Associated Press photo

  • Video: "Mad Men" season 5

 
By Alison Ladman and Michelle Locke
Associated Press

Does Don Draper do finger food? Judging by the first four seasons of TV's popular "Mad Men" show it doesn't seem likely unless we're talking about a belt of bourbon with a couple of smoking hot Lucky Strikes on the side.

But since that hardly sounds appetizing, we've come up with something a little tastier to greet the return of "Mad Men" on AMC on Sunday, March 25.

First up are the drinks, which include a classic martini -- made with gin, easy on the vermouth -- and a rummy Hawaiian punch. The latter is a particularly appropriate choice since Hawaiian Punch, the juice product initially created in the '30s as a syrup ice cream topping, was the focus for a classic ad campaign in the 1960s that introduced the character "Punchy" and the tagline "How about a nice Hawaiian punch?" That's an in-your-face approach that might have come straight out of the Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce agency.

And don't forget the old fashioned, ad exec Draper's drink of choice. This one's made with rye, the way Don did in season three's "My Old Kentucky Home," episode. We didn't vault over the bar counter to fix it, though.

For food, go retro, starting with a plate of deviled eggs, all the better if you can serve them on one of those dimpled trays made especially for this purpose. Add chopped ham and a dash of hot sauce for the "devilry" part. Serve with a smirk and your best impression of the piquant wit of Roger Sterling.

Be sure to set out a cheese ball platter, the nutty classic that everyone cracks jokes about, right up until the plate's scraped clean of its creamy, cheesy goodness. It's just the thing for the season premiere, a two-hour special written by series creator Matt Weiner.

What will happen this season? Who knows? The show creators are known for being stingy with spoilers. But it seems a safe bet these drink recipes will make for a perfectly swell party.

Hawaiian Punch
Servings: 12
12 ounces light rum
6 ounces dark rum
4 ounces orange curacao liqueur
4 ounces lime juice
46-ounce can pineapple juice
16-ounce jar maraschino cherries (with the juice)
20-ounce can pineapple rings
1 orange, cut into wedges

In a large punch bowl, combine the light rum, dark rum, curacao, lime juice, pineapple juice and the juice from the jar of maraschino cherries. Stir together. Garnish with the maraschino cherries, pineapple rings and orange wedges. Chill until ready to serve.

Classic Martini
Servings: 1
Ice
2 ounces gin
ounce dry vermouth
2 green olives

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine the gin and vermouth. Shake vigorously, then strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with the olives.

Old Fashioned
Servings: 1
1 cube (or 1 teaspoon) sugar
2 maraschino cherries
2 slices orange
2 dashes bitters
Splash of soda water
2 ounces rye whiskey
Ice

In an old fashioned glass, combine the sugar, 1 cherry, 1 orange slice, the bitters and the soda water. Muddle the ingredients together in the glass until the sugar is completely dissolved. Add the rye and a couple ice cubes. Garnish with the remaining cherry and orange slice.

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