(credit: Steve Cukrov/shutterstock)

(credit: Steve Cukrov/shutterstock)

When it comes to the Super Bowl, we reached out to a local expert to share their very special ideas on making your party an experience your guests wont soon forget.
(credit: Joan S./Yelp)

(credit: Joan S./Yelp)

Melisa Nicola
Nic’s Beverly Hills
North Canon Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
(310) 968-2300

As co-owner of Nic’s, a lively night spot that serves sultry American food and iconic martinis, Melisa Nicola has been overseeing the action for the past 19 years. Celebrities and locals alike enjoy the warm, friendly atmosphere where everyone is treated as a V.I.P., often so much so that catering is also in the mix from this happening Beverly Hills establishment. In fact, Nic’s has catered for high profile politicians, edgy artists, famous ballplayers, Fortune 500 CEOs and everyone in between. “We’ve been asked to cater weddings, just divorced and newly single parties, baby showers, baptisms bar-mitzvahs, theatre openings, political fundraisers and birthdays, to name just a sampling of special occasions,” says Nicola. The following are Melisa’s expert’s ideas on how to do a Super Bowl party right.


Nicola suggests you ask your guests to arrive about half an hour to an hour before game-time so your team can mingle. How? By prepping a cheesy jalapeno injected cilantro dip. This expert asserts, “This recipe is an easy mix of milk, cheese, onions, pickled jalapenos, herbs and beer. Make two versions by choosing two different beers that will serve to represent the cities each team hails from. Top with cilantro and green onions and voila! Game on!”

Make A Pass

To be sure your party is one where everyone has a ball, Nicola suggests you deliver with a favorite dish from the Middle East called Kibbee. To make this delight, mix ground lamb with spice, nutmeg, cinnamon and bulgar wheat. Then take two tablespoons of the lamb mixture and roll between the palms of your hands so they are formed into small, bite-sized footballs. Add pine nuts and bake. When this delicious treat comes out of the oven, it’s time to serve with Lebane (a dip made with yoghurt and mint) or some roasted red pepper hummus.

Crunch Time

For Super Bowl munching, fresh veggies and cool dips are always a welcome treat and a staple at most parties. Nicola says they are “kind of an ice breaker, if you will, and a great way to get some fresh foods into our bodies.” This expert adds, “However, all that crunching during the exciting plays can be distracting, so switch things up a bit by blanching yellow peppers, broccoli, snap peas and Persian cucumbers after these vegetables have been sliced lengthwise. By blanching, the veggies will retain their freshness and vibrant color, but will be a bit quieter to enjoy. Afterword, sprinkle some cayenne over the top and serve with a cool sour cream, pimento and pickled jalapeno dip.”

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Drinks, Drinks, Drinks

“Serving specific drinks will give the game a new meaning,” says Nicola. She names one in particular which is made of fresh lemonade, beer, vodka and a touch of grenadine. To make this thirst quencher, fill half your blender with ice and then pour in the rest of the ingredients to mix it up before serving. Nicola states that the “beer will froth up at the top of the glass.” She also contends that you can make different flavors of lemonade to reflect the colors of teams. Pink? Blackberry? Hibiscus? Lavender? Whatever you choose, serve in a rocks glass with Uber’s phone number on the bottom, as driving after drinking this concoction is not an option.

Half Time Bonding

Create a great fun little dessert together while Coldplay is performing during halftime. Nicola’s pick is her take on oatmeal cookie sandwiches. She says, “Have oatmeal cookies and marscapone ready so friends in attendance can dollop the marscapone into the center of the silver dollar-sized, soft cookies. Serve with chai tea.”

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Freelance travel writer Jane Lasky, contributes to publications such as Travel + Leisure, Vogue and Esquire. Her weekly sojourning column ran in 40 newspapers for 20 years. Jane is anything but an accidental tourist and always travels with her pillow. Check out her articles on Examiner.com