Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller

Hint: it’s the magic combination of easy, delicious, and long-lasting.

Punch holds an iconic place in entertaining and dining culture. According to history, it all started with British sailors who, in the 1600s would concoct a punch cocktail from local ingredients while they were thousands and thousands of miles from home... and from their favorite beers. It’s come a long way from slap-dash sea-faring inventions, and waxed and waned in its public popularity polls. But regardless of what’s in vogue, punch bowls and ladles have always had a place in our (and our mama’s!) deep kitchen cabinets. There’s a reason too. Punch is a resource-efficient, low stress, and not to forget, delicious, way to feed (er, quench the thirst of?) the masses. Why we’ll be pulling out our best punch bowls for our next get-together:

  1. Easy to Prep
    When you break it down, this cocktail involves simply pouring large quantities of liquid together in a bowl. It’s a fail-safe way to ensure each guest gets a drink in their hand upon arrival without the fuss of measuring, shakers, and complicated (not to mention messy) cocktail stations.
  2. Built to Last
    Punch is meant to be sipped continuously over a period of time, which again, only makes the hostess’s job that much easier. But, since it is indeed meant to be sipped through the evening, a few things to keep in mind: one, keep a large block of ice floating in it to keep it cool. The larger the block of ice, the slower it will melt. Two: wait until the very last minute to pour any bubbly ingredients in to prolong the punch’s oh-so-necessary fizz.
  3. Crowd-Pleasing
    There are near-infinite combinations for a pleasing punch. From fresh citrus concoctions to sparkly winter mixes. Oh, and we have recipes for all of them. Need non-alcoholic options? Simply keep some lemon-lime soda on hand.  
  4. Pretty Punch Bowls
    It’s a good excuse to pull out grandma’s fine punch bowls. Or, if you don’t have one already, there are plenty of finds on the market today. Like this elegant one from our Dillard’s collection. Or keep it simple with this steal of a 10-piece set from Crate & Barrel.

Now, get to mixing!