Full disclosure, I know Lulu and have had the pleasure of having cocktails at her terribly chic LA home this January. That said, she isn't some friend, hawkin' some book but rather a truly gifted entertainer. And while every Tom, Dick and Harry seem to think they are an Entertaining Expert these days, she can actually fit the bill. Now, I am as tight as the next girl during recession of the century but this is worth forking over cash.
Here are my 5 top picks to get this book:
1. She is the Real Deal.
She's been a private chef for folks like Madonna and Will Smith. She actually cooks instead of pretending to (sorry, Saundra Lee and Rachel Ray). Her list of clients is very impressive. These are not easy to please people so having the talent to produce events for such folks is worth taking note.
2. But she also gets real people.
Unlike a lot of Hollywood Party Planners like Preston Bailey and David Tutera, she understands that most folks don't have a staff of 10 or even 1 to make things happen. And that most of us go from work to chef mode to get family-ready mode to party-girl mode (you get the picture) so we need things that fit into that lifestyle. She gets it.
3. She gets that money matters.
While it's not in your face, she adds ideas or ways to save money, make your party go further on less and it's done on in an elegant way. I love her love of Ikea ice molds and .99 pack of festive napkins. I love how she gives you ways to extend recipes like lemonade for the family or with vodka as cocktail or frozen as a fancy party pop.
4. Nothing is too hard. I have more cookbooks and entertaining books than one should be allowed and the ones with recipes as long as the front page of the NY Times never get tried. Her recipes are very "Ina" in that they are doable and I want to eat 'em.
5. To get the recipe for the Ivy Gimblet pg. 259. Delish!
Check out her site, lulupowers.com. She's a hoot so if she's speaking in your area, go! And if you meet her, tell her hello from me.