Dinner Party Confidential

So often we want to be the host for the “it” event of the season, month or week by throwing a massive party and inviting our thousands of social media friends, but whatever happened to the exclusivity of hosting an amazing dinner party? Let us give you a crash course in hosting a remarkable evening your guests won’t forget.

Scope your location in advance. It’s easy to want to make plans at your go-to Mexican spot or your favorite inexpensive bar, but what about reservations? The wait time? Busy hours? When you’re scoping out the perfect location for your mid-day dine, be sure to check out things like parking and private rooms. It’ll help you tailor your guest list and you’ll be able to see if you can bring your own decorations to make the evening that much more special.

Become one with the menu. The sacred list of dishes and drinks specially cultivated for that restaurant can make or break the evening because of dietary restrictions, allergies and pricing. Scope the menus in advance. Not only will this let you decide if this is the right restaurant for the evening, you’ll be able to familiarize yourself with the dishes so you can give your guests recommendations like a pro.

Call ahead or take a trip. You’ll want to know how the customer service is, if the food is on time, if the dishes are seasonal and so much more. Visit! Eat there. Acquaint yourself so that when you show up for your reservation, you’re not just another stranger. Easy tip: Show up about 20 minutes before the actual start time to introduce yourself to your waiter or the bartender (depending on your restaurant). Not only will this make customer service more laid back, it will give you time to get things set up and prepared for your friends.

Keep it personal. Nobody likes a stuffy meal so be sure to keep things light. If people aren’t talking, bring up general commonalities between guests. If dinner seems to be running slowly, order a round of shots to warm up the room. It’s important to not overthink the evening and to be warm and welcoming under all circumstances. These are your people so they already know you – make sure they network and get to know everybody else.

You’ve cultivated your guest list, picked out the perfect restaurant and have the perfect dishes in your mind for each friend. Be sure to double check reservations and invitations before the day of and have some fun! At the end of the evening, remember to thank everyone for coming out and pat yourself on the back – you’ve just thrown the perfect dinner party.

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