Finding ways to spend the weekends in winter is a tall order when we’re facing arctic winds and rain that seems to show up just as it’s time to head out the door. So why not bring the fun to your own home instead? It means less weather battling and more wine sipping if you play host to a group of close friends.
Prep like a pro
The secret to pulling off your dinner party without excess stress is all in the planning according to the professionals. Barb La Ganza from Barbette’s Feast says the key is choosing a menu where most dishes are ready to go and just need quick heating and plating once the guests arrive. To breeze through the clean-up afterwards, have your dishwasher empty at the start of the night so you can get everything washing by night’s end. Find Barbette’s Feast on Facebook and Instagram.
Elevate the evening with ideal seating
Obviously the talk of the night will be the culinary delights being dished up from the kitchen. But few things sink a dinner party faster than grumpy guests awaiting their meal. The best way to keep your friends cheerful is making sure they’ve each got a cushy dining chair while the slow-cooker finishes its job. Going for a more informal type of meal? Match the furniture to the meal by opting for some casual bar stools to give your home Spanish tapas bar vibes. Plus they fit snugly under your island bench for when you’re not playing ultimate party host.
Wow them with local produce
Fresh, local produce shines on its own so with a few small tweaks you’ll be set to impress. Take Fiona Makowski’s advice and serve up quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil with cubes of fresh bread for a simple starter that’s sure to excite the tastebuds. You could even add balsamic vinegar or dukkah to pack a flavour punch. Check out Freshfield Grove on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
Call in reinforcements
The best host is one who enjoys their own party. When it starts to get overwhelming or the guest list has taken on a life of its own there’s nothing wrong with asking for help. As Lucy Xu from OneFlare suggests, “an extra hand would help lighten the mood.” Split the work down the middle by outsourcing the canapes and main dish but pulling off your own stellar dessert. Or wow everyone with your drinks selection while someone else handles the heat of the kitchen. Check out OneFlare on Facebook.
Now you’ve got all the tips, it’s time to grab the bottle opener and cheers to the best dinner party since Bridget Jones served blue string soup.