You’ve meant to have people over for dinner for months, but something always comes up every time you start planning. Sound familiar? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one. Life gets busy, and sometimes it feels like there’s not enough time in the day to get everything done—let alone throw a dinner party.
But here’s the thing: hosting a dinner party doesn’t have to be stressful or complicated. With some planning and forethought, you can easily pull off a beautiful and memorable evening that your friends and family will discuss for weeks. All you need are these five essentials:
This one should go without saying, but good food is essential for a successful dinner party. Whether you’re serving a multi-course meal or keeping it simple with appetizers and desserts, ensure that everything is perfect and that your guests have plenty of options. If you’re not much of a cook, no problem! There are plenty of great catering companies out there that can do the heavy lifting for you.
However, you need to remember some things regarding your party’s food. First is your budget. The average expenditure of Americans on food every month is around $550. So make sure not to go above that if you want to save.
The next thing you need to consider is your guests’ dietary restrictions. With so many people having different food allergies and preferences, knowing what everyone can and can’t eat is essential. The last thing you want is for someone to get sick or have an allergic reaction at your party.
To avoid any issues, it’s best to send out a pre-party questionnaire to all of your guests. This way, you can find out about any dietary restrictions and plan your menu accordingly.
Having good food is all about having a lot of consideration towards your guests. By following the tips above, you can ensure that you’ll have good food for the party.
Wine is the perfect way to add a touch of sophistication to your evening and make your guests feel special. But with so many different types of wine out there, it can be tricky to know which ones to serve. A good rule of thumb is to offer one white wine and one red wine, as well as a sparkling option for those who don’t drink alcohol or are pregnant. Be sure to do a tasting beforehand to decide which wines pair best with your menu. Aside from serving wine, there are several great cheap drinks alternatives that you can craft at home.
First impressions are everything, so take some time to create a beautiful table setting that your guests will be impressed by. Start with a clean tablecloth, placemats, and centerpieces complimenting your color scheme. Candles are always a nice touch, too! Then, focus on the small details like salt and pepper shakers, napkin rings, and place cards. That extra effort will make your dinner party feel like an event.
If you expect the night to be hot, then you should also put out some fans. It will help your guests to be more comfortable, and they will appreciate it.
Lastly, you need to remember that most people eat with their eyes. So your dinnerware will make a difference in your guests’ experience. Consider investing in an affordable 12-piece dinnerware set before the event. This will ensure that your food is presented in the best light possible.
Nothing sets the tone quite like music—so make sure you’ve got some playing in the background! Choose something mellow and unobtrusive; you don’t want your guests to have to shout over the music to carry on a conversation. Jazz or classical music are always good choices, but feel free to get creative and pick something that reflects your style. Pandora and Spotify are great resources for finding new music, or you can create your playlist ahead of time.
Lastly, don’t forget the essential ingredient: good conversation! The best way to ensure that your guests have a good time is by ensuring they enjoy themselves and that the conversation flows freely throughout the evening.‘To help break the ice, prepare some conversation starters ahead of time (but make sure they’re not too personal!). You could also try playing some fun icebreaker games like “Two Truths and a Lie“ or “Would You Rather?“ if you think things might get awkward at any point during the night.
A dinner party is a perfect way to catch up with old friends or get to know new ones—but only if it’s done right! Following these five simple tips, you can easily host an unforgettable evening that your guests will discuss for weeks. Bon appetit!
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