The Manual’s Guide to Super Bowl Food & Drink

super bowl party

The New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons meet this Sunday in the 51st edition of America’s biggest sporting event.

As the king of unofficial holidays, Super Bowl Sunday is known for the parties just as much as the football.

This year, there’s no need to stick to the standard chips, wings and bland lager. We’ve put together a few ideas to elevate your Super Bowl party to the best get-together on the block.


Don’t get us wrong, party staples are still great.  But instead of a ton of heavy options, take one of the classics, then supplement it with lighter fare. We love a huge plate of nachos, but also like to get our veggies in with some hummus on a platter.

And don’t feel that you have to provide everything. Super Bowl parties are a great way to let your friends flex their culinary muscle with their own offering.

Don’t Settle for the Same Old Drinks

Widmer Hopfruit

In today’s mind-boggling boozy landscape, it’s easy to expand your palette. Replace ol’ reliable with Widmer Hopfruit – an easy-drinking, 4.9% Hefeweizen from one of Oregon’s best breweries. It’s brewed with grapefruit peel, so it’s a good balance for those who don’t typically drink beer.

As for wine, surprise your guests with canned goodness from Union Wine Company . This Pacific Northwest upstart offers four distinct blends in 375ml cans (about 2.5 glasses worth). In the depth of February winters, we’re fans of their pinot noir, which is just balanced enough to complement just about any snack you put on the table. (Their sparking wine is a great addition should your team win the big game.)

To get the festivities started, we’ve found two great party recipes.

For a cocktail, we have Bruschetta in a Glass by Eric Tecosky of Jones Hollywood in Los Angeles. Chef B.J. Smith gave us his Family-Style Frito Pie. He’s the Owner and Executive Chef of Smokehouse Tavern in Portland, OR. Smokehouse Provisions, in Vancouver, WA., and Portland’s Kim Jong Smokehouse. Smith was formerly a Top Chef contestant and is known for some of the region’s best barbecue.

Bruschetta in a Glass

By Eric Tecosky, Jones Hollywood, Los Angeles


  • 2 oz. Beluga Vodka
  • 2 cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ oz. Dirty Sue Premium Olive Juice
  • ½ oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 basil leaf
  • 1 small slice of garlic
  • pinch of sea salt
  • pinch of black pepper


  1. Muddle tomatoes and add the remaining ingredients
  2. Shake well with ice
  3. Fine strain into a chilled cocktail glass
  4. Garnish with a basil leaf

Family Style Frito Pie 

Family Style Frito Pie

By, B.J. Smith, Smokehouse Restaurants, Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA


  • 4 bags (4oz. each) of Frito’s (or similar corn chips)
  • 1 quart of smoked brisket chili
  • 1 pint of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 4 tablespoons small diced red onion


  • 5 lbs. Chopped smoked brisket (ground beef can be substituted)
  • 4 tablespoons bacon fat
  • 1 diced onion
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • Salt and to taste
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 can beer
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons Masa


Sweat onion and garlic in the bacon fat. Add the spices and bloom.
Add beer and chicken stock, fold in chopped brisket.
Cook for about 2 hours.
Add brown sugar and vinegar.
Thicken to desired consistency with Masa (corn flour).
Pour Frito’s into a casserole dish, then top with the hot chili, cheese and onions.

This article was revised & updated by Geoff Nudelman on 1/26/17.