Grounded Coffee
Courtesy of Grounded Coffee Catering

Sure, we love wine and cocktails, but lately we're craving some excitement in our party drinks. So we were thrilled to discover Melissa Knott, founder of Grounded Coffee Catering, whose custom-made coffee and espresso drinks bring an unexpected flair to home entertaining.

As long as there's an outlet for her espresso machine, Knotts will travel anywhere in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania to serve you and your guests the perfect cup of coffee, cappuccino or latte. All of her beverages can be served chilled for warm-weather drinking and we're particularly taken with her iced coffee, which is gently cold-brewed for 24 hours.

Standouts on this barista's menu include her espresso con panna (a shot of espresso topped with freshly whipped cream) and her Turkish coffee, an exotic roast with cardamom undertones. Along with fair-trade, organic coffee and espresso drinks--decaf included--guests can sip loose-leaf herbal teas, hot chocolate and made-to-order sodas (we love Knott's cremosa, blended with a touch of half and half).

Packages start at $175 for a 20-guest event with all the fixings (recyclable cups, milks for every diet and sweeteners) and a custom menu that includes an original roast--Knott works closely with clients, collaborating with two independent roasters in New Jersey to create the blend.

We just met the guest of honor at our next soiree.

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