How to Assemble the Ultimate New Year's Day Brunch Bar
The new year is just around the corner, making now a great time to prepare for that first meal of 2016. Sure, you may still be aching from the night before, but why not resolve to keep the party going? The key to hosting a laid-back New Year's Day brunch lies in fueling your guests with a few rounds of mimosas (followed by a much-needed cup of barista-approved coffee). For an easy, no-fuss way to assemble your spread, try out this cheerful buffet-style bar, inspired by L.A. chef Alvin Cailan of cult-favorite food truck Eggslut. Just follow these four easy steps.
1. Bring on the bubbly.
Set out bottles of cold Prosecco and carafes of citrus juices, from blood orange to grapefruit, giving the old brunch favorite a novel spin and letting guests experiment with fizzy combos.
2. Serve strong java.
"I like to blend the best aspects of a Vietnamese coffee and a Cuban café con leche," says Cailan. He starts with a dark brew (Cailan likes Café du Monde coffee, $11/15 oz; worldmarket.com) made in a stovetop coffeemaker and adds condensed milk ("Guests can glaze the bottom of the cup with it"). For a Cubano, use equal parts whole milk and coffee.
3. Dress up your table.
Adorn your table with bright yellow flowers to match the egg-centric brunch, and use cake stands and cutting boards to create a multi-tiered display that gives the table a look of abundance. Conjure Cailan's industrial-chic aesthetic by covering the table with a black butcher paper runner ($10; knotandbow.com) and label the various dishes with a thick white pen. Minimize your cleanup by using squares of white or brown kraft paper to wrap egg sandwiches, and, for a nod to last night's festivities, scatter around a few noisemakers or some colorful confetti ($4; knotandbow.com). Voilà!