How to Host a Dinner Party
A beautifully set tablescape.
Enjoying a delicious dinner while sipping wine and having intelligent conversation with friends sounds like a perfect night, doesn’t it? Hosting a dinner party doesn’t have to be an overwhelming affair and can be just as enjoyable as having a professional doing all the work for you.
Here are some tips to help you host a perfect dinner party.
Step One – Choose a Theme
Picking a theme to center your dinner party around, such as a specific ethnicity like French or Thai, can change your night from blah to wow. Your guests will appreciate the effort that you put into creating a themed party.
Step Two – Create Your Checklists
In order for your dinner party go smoothly, you should have several checklists in place to help you plan everything properly. Here it goes:
One Month Ahead
- Send out your invitations about 3 – 4 weeks in advanced so that your guests will have an appropriate time frame in which to respond
- Set the dinner menu and prepare a grocery list of all necessary ingredients
- Set up rentals (for serving pieces and accessories, extra tables, extra seating, etc)
- Hire a bartender or caterer if required
One to Two Weeks Ahead
- Finalize your orders with caterers, bartenders, servers, butchers, florists, etc.
- Give your home a complete and thorough cleaning
- Decide on a party outfit or buy a new one
Two Days Ahead
- Clean all serving plates, wine glasses, silverware and tablecloths
- Begin food preparation for dishes that allow it
- Create a seating arrangement if you are using it
- Pick up some gourmet coffee, cappuccino, and teas
The Day Before
- Continue food preparation
- Continue your housecleaning efforts
- Stock the bathrooms with toilet paper, soap, and hand towels
- Set your table and appetizer stations
The Day of the Party
- Finish all the cooking
- Finish cleaning up the house
- Complete the set up for all the tables, bars, and kitchen
- Pick up all party orders
- Make sure that there are enough coat hangers in the closet or there is a room designated for coats and bags
Step Three – Enjoy Yourself
Be sure to keep yourself out of the kitchen and with your guest as much as possible. Your guests came to your dinner party in order to spend time with you so be sure to mingle and not worry so much.