5 Tips for the Perfect Dinner Party

While dinner and companions are the main components of the evening, giving your guests a night to remember involves intricate planning and a bit of strategy. You will need to prepare your mind and your kitchen long before the doorbell rings. Here are five things to remember when hosting the perfect dinner party.

1. The Host Matters Most

The most crucial ingredient to every dinner party is the host. You're the one bringing everyone together for a night of cuisine and conversation. If you're stressed and uneasy, those feelings will inevitably transfer to your guests and possibly spoil the night you've worked so hard to plan.

Carry out prep work for courses or beverages without compromising quality. Give yourself plenty of time before guests arrive to shop for ingredients, ready the house and set the table. Of course, don't forget about yourself! Everyone wants to be greeted by a smiling, put-together host. Factor in a bit of primp time for yourself while preparing throughout the day.

2. The People

The personalities who will fill the seats at your table can make or break the entire evening. Invite a crew of fun friends who like to make conversation with others. Consider how you want everyone to feel by the end of the night and construct your guest list from there. If you're dying for friends from different segments of your life to get to know each other, opt for place cards. This is why it's important to know most of the guests on your list rather well; if a few newcomers make the cut, seat them near you or someone sure to make them feel comfortable.

3. The Food

If you're considering hosting a dinner party, you're probably a big fan of trying out new Pinterest recipes, but this is not the night to test new flavors. Reach for the recipe that everyone asks for after sampling one of your signature dishes. If you don't have much experience in the kitchen, try a test run a few days before the event to make sure everything tastes as it should. Above taste, make sure everyone can enjoy at least most of the menu. When sending out invites, inquire about food allergies and try to avoid these when constructing the night's bites.

4. The Mood

It's easy to think that all you need for a good dinner party are people and food, but for a great dinner party you'll need a bit more. Engage the senses when setting the scene for your domestic soiree. Dress the table with fresh flowers, an unfussy cloth and attractive - but not necessarily identical - flatware. Curate a playlist that will complement and not disrupt conversation. Light a few candles at least half an hour before guests arrive to fully immerse them in the night's theme, and be sure that the seating arrangements are comfortable enough to be used throughout a multiple course meal.

5. Send the Right Signals

The best dinner parties mature into functions beyond the table. Let your guests know when the meal has ended by clearing dishes and offering dessert in a separate room. Be sure to have a few ideas on hand for starting conversation or maybe some games during the second half of the evening. This is a great time to share recent travel photos, introduce any who may not have met yet or to simply go where the night takes you.

Written by Stanley Martin Homes
Submitted on 4/13/2017 Posted in Northern Virginia
Category: The Loft