Outdoor Happy Hours

It’s been a long day of work and you’re ready to unwind with your friends – why would you choose to stay indoors in a dimly lit bar? Bring happy hour outside instead and enjoy the fresh, warm air and cotton-candy sunsets of summer.

We’ve rounded up some of our favorite shareable recipes, perfect for the hot days of summer.


Melon, Mozzarella & Prosciutto Skewers

We love this recipe because it uses in-season melons and classic Italian favorites.

● 20 1-inch honeydew or cantaloupe cubes
● 20 thin slices of prosciutto
● 1 8-oz. container of Il Villaggio Mozzarella Bocconcini Ciliegine
● 20 4-inch wooden skewers
● Fresh black pepper

Place a melon cube, a slice of the prosciutto, and an IV mozzarella ball onto each of the wooden skewers. Sprinkle with cracked pepper. Place in a portable dish. When you arrive, simply take off the lid and let your guests help themselves!

Balsamic Bruschetta

Bruschetta is a long-time favorite and it’s simple nature is perfect for happy hour.

● 7-8 roma tomatoes, diced
● 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
● 1/3 cup of Il Villaggio Parmesan Reggiano
● 2 cloves garlic, minced
● 1 tablespoon IV Aceto Balsamico di Modena
● 1 teaspoon olive oil
● 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
● 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
● 1 loaf Italian bread, toasted and sliced

In a large bowl, toss together the tomatoes, basil, IV Parmesan cheese, and garlic. Then, mix in the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, kosher salt, and pepper. Transfer the mix to a portable container. When on-site, place bread slices and balsamic mixture side by side and allow guests to spoon it on themselves to prevent sogginess.

Gorgonzola Dip

This dip is perfect for a bread bowl, and it takes only a few minutes to make.

1 cup crumbled Il Villaggio Gorgonzola cheese
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons of half-and-half
A pinch of fresh pepper
1/3 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Reserve a small amount of the Gorgonzola cheese for garnish. In a food processor, combine the cream cheese, Gorgonzola cheese, half-and-half and pepper. Blend until ingredients are combined.
Reserve a small amount of walnuts for garnish. Stir the walnuts into the blended cheese mixture – adjust to taste. Place in a small container and let chill until you’re ready to use. Scoop dip into bread bowl, garnish with parsley, and the reserved walnuts and Gorgonzola. Enjoy!


Craft Beer

Craft beer and summer go together like eggnog and Christmas. We love going to places where you can make your own six-pack (like Fairway), especially when we’re entertaining a large group of people and aren’t sure of their preferences. Plus, it’s a great way to find new favorites.


Not everyone is a fan of beer, and that’s fine. During summer, we love making this easy fruit sangria, and it’s perfect for serving outdoors when the sun is hot.

The night before, put around two cups of your favorite fruits in a plastic pitcher and set them in the freezer. Once you’re on location, pour a bottle of white wine, a generous splash of rum, and a generous splash of triple sec over the fruit, give it a good stir, and enjoy.

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