Now that quarantine restriction in Metro Manila is easing, many families are excited to host dinner parties, whether to celebrate a milestone or just to catch up on each other’s lives. It could be a way to celebrate a huge milestone or get your close friends to dress up for a fancy evening.
This yearning for gatherings is actually true for everyone around the world. In America, a recent ButcherBox survey revealed that about 44% of Americans planning to host in their homes said they weren’t celebrating any milestones but simply hosting a dinner party! And why not? Every person on Earth misses the feeling of being with friends and loved ones.
So how exactly are you going to prepare for a dinner party? Here are some tips on how to be a great dinner party host:
- Serve your meals tactfully
It is always best to bring some dishes to the dinner table to guarantee a relaxed dining experience. Your guest will have full control over their portion sizes if you serve meals this way, ensuring they don’t eat too much or too little. Additionally, bringing serveware and food containers to the table ensures that guests can select what they want to eat, avoiding anything they are allergic to and saving you from being at the receiving end of an awkward refusal. However, remember to present some drinks and dishes away from the main dining table to encourage mingling.
- Set the ambiance in advance
A great dinner party host prepares the ambiance in advance instead of waiting till the last minute, so keep this in mind. Therefore, set the table before the first guest arrives by placing all the dishes and arranging serving plates, spoons, forks, and napkins. Additionally, arrange all seats separately and provide place cards. A few spruces are also worth considering to make the ambiance look welcoming. For instance, you can bring in fresh flowers to decorate your dinner tables and invest in light-scented candles to create softness in the room. Finally, consider stringing fairy lights across the ceiling and walls and dimming them to create a relaxing atmosphere.
- Prioritize your guests’ comfort
Many experts agree that a great dinner party host keeps their guests’ comfort in mind from the planning stage to the actual event. You must anticipate your guests’ needs, so attend to all the little details before the first person shows up. Your guests will undoubtedly use the bathroom while at your home, so it is advisable to clean the place and stock it with soap, toilet paper, and hand towels. Additionally, ensure that there are enough places to sit, particularly if you are serving fork-and-knife meals instead of just finger foods.
Furthermore, help your guests unwind as they arrive by specifying where they can keep their purses and coats. You can also give them a quick tour of the place and show them the bathroom after offering them beverages. In addition, you have to be the leader and spark of the event, so alert your guests when it’s time for dinner and desserts. Finally, mingle with everyone present, introduce newcomers, and converse with each sub-group. This way, you can keep everyone comfortable and relaxed, ensuring that all guests have a good time.
- Include entertainment options
There is no denying that good company and delicious food are the foundations of a great dinner party. However, the entertainment present at these events is essential to keep the laughter and conversation flowing all night long. Consequently, it is vital to include entertainment options in your dinner party planning to keep guests engaged throughout. Music is perhaps the first entertainment idea to go with when planning a dinner party. A reported 26% of respondents in a survey of all things party-related conducted by OnePoll said that the worst thing a host can do at a dinner party is to not play music. Therefore, take time to build a suitable playlist for the dinner party you are hosting. Also, include some dinner party games that don’t need much explaining. Many pen and paper games are worth considering, as are other classics like Mr and Mrs, charades, and Pictionary.
- Craft your menu carefully
It is always tempting to cook fancy dishes to impress guests when hosting a dinner party. However, you will have so much to do during the party, so it is best to stick with familiar but delicious dishes that are easy to prepare. Tried-and-tested classics will help you avoid any stress that negatively impacts your hosting experience. Also, plan your menu based on the season and provide a wide range of beverage options, so there is something for everyone.