this week i had the distinct pleasure of returning to san francisco to host a party with the lovely and most delicious frangelico — a classic liqueur, flavored with specialty Tonda Gentile hazelnuts, and whose origins date back more than 300 years to the presence of Christian friars who first created the liqueur while living in the hills of the Piedmont region of northern Italy. frangelico invited me to throw a galentine’s party for my favorite bay area gal pals and i was thrilled to oblige! we all got together at hands on gourmet — dogpatch’s wonderful cooking space and as a group we all broke off into teams and cooked an amazing italian feast to accompany our frangelico cocktails. we started off the evening with a wonderful welcome apperitif — the Frizzante — a simple easy cocktail to mix with one part frangelico and two parts sparkling water (or prosecco if you like) and a squeeze of fresh lime. the Frizzante has this delicious aftertaste of hazelnut that i really love paired with the refreshing sparkling water and hint of lime.
the hands on gourmet space is gorgeous — a loft-like space with windows spanning the entire room and beautiful views of the bay and city lights, so it was really fun to glam it up with the help of one of my favorite san francisco floral designers, ampersand. they went to town adding pretty greenery and flower arrangements they created especially for us with our frangelico and galentine’s theme in mind. we also had beautiful garlands from paper fox L.A. perfectly reflecting the evening’s sunset in their shimmery streamers, heart-shaped balloons and gold straws for sipping from oh happy day! and designer christine herrin created a lovely hand-drawn cocktail menu in gold for us. to make the evening extra special, we served our frangelico cocktails in pretty vintage glassware from frances lane.
with our frizzantes in hand and helpful guidance from hands on gourmet’s amazing chefs we set about making our italian feast — and a feast it was!! we made pizzas, meatballs, fritto misto, grilled vegetables, homemade Spaghetti Carbonara, grilled steak — i mean we were preparing a galentine gourmet feast! we then sat down to eat and Ashley from craft & cocktails served us a lovely frangelico cocktail called the Solo Tu created by Pam Wiznitzer of Seamstress NYC — a mix of frangelico, fig jam, skyy vodka, orgeat, lemon, salt and orange bitters – so delicious and light tasting with our amazing italian meal.
for the grand finale of our italian feast we served the hazelnutmeg, a cocktail made with frangelico, Wild Turkey Bourbon, Cream, Coconut Milk, and Nutmeg — divinely rich and yummy! and served along with it was also a to-die-for tiramisu we made topped with the prettiest heart-shaped sparklers from oh happy day! frangelico, perfect after a meal neat or with ice or as a complement to the coffee — Drink it in winter and summer; to warm you up or cool you down; short or long; straight or mixed, frangelico is delicious in every way. happy galentine’s day, everyone!
o photography by cindy loughridge for sfgirlbybay.