Cocktails and Canapés: How To Throw A Classy Dinner Party

Cocktails and Canapés: How To Throw A Classy Dinner Party

Hosting an at-home classy dinner party is always a fun event. With a little know-how, you can pull it off with ease and elegance. Just keep in mind that success requires you to roll up your sleeves and get to work. It takes a lot of preparation and organization to create the perfect dinner. Taking the time to ensure everything is just right will ensure all your guests have an amazing time. Here’s an outline of all the essentials to get you started.

Get Started with Classy Drinks and Hors D’oeuvres

With a few key liquors like whiskey, vodka and rum, you can mix up some sophisticated drinks that are timelessly stylish. Serving up aperitifs is the ideal way to put your guests in a great mood and stir up the conversation along with getting the palate ready for your culinary delights. Martinis, Side Cars, Manhattans, French Cosmopolitan, Mint Juleps and Bellini Mimosas are long-time favourites that never go out of style and always make a hit with guests. Just be sure to use the appropriate glass vessels and garnishments, such as maraschino cherries, olives and mint leaves.

Delicious canapés served with cocktails are the perfect melange for a classy dinner party. These hors d’oeuvres are made with a base of crackers or bread and topped with an assortment of tiny, savoury toppings. Flavoured butter or cheese is placed on top, and the next layer has a focal point like a veggie or meat. A garnish is placed on top to make the morsels more decorative and flavourful. Tasty garnishes include scallions, herbs and flavoured oils like truffle oil. Canapés can be served either hot or cold, and with the right flavour of salt or spice, they can complement the delicious cocktails you’re serving.

The Main Course and Dessert

Deciding on the menu for a dinner party is usually the toughest task. To ease the burden, you can start with an ethnic theme like American, Italian, French or Asian. Once you choose a theme, it’s best to serve up foods that fit well within that theme. For example, an American dish of porchetta stuffed with wild mushrooms, celeriac mash and gravy is well-matched with simple steamed veggies and potato au gratin. Presentation is also important. Edible flowers and a sprinkling of herbs always add a touch of panache.

An astute host or hostess never sends their guests home without a delectable dessert to finish off a memorable evening. From chocolate mousse and dreamy cheesecake drizzled with strawberry sauce to truffle cakes, there are plenty of recipes to choose from that you can prepare well ahead of time. If you’re short on time, getting your desserts from a fine bakery is an ideal alternative. Fruit tarts, teetering croquembouche, and clafoutis are a great way to complement a French-inspired dinner.

Use Music and Décor to Set The Mood

Nothing is classier than the romantic atmosphere of a room filled with candles and soothing music in the background. Even if you want to dim your electric lights, be sure to have some hand-lit candles on the table or scattered throughout the room to set an intimate mood. You can choose your own genre of music to enhance the atmosphere, but it should be soothing and not too loud. Jazz and a playlist of tunes from pop artists like Michael Bublé are always good picks.

Of course, you’ll want your décor to be just right so that your party guests are cozy. If you’ve just moved into a new place and you need some major furniture items anyway, you can kill two birds with one stone and easily rent fashionable furniture to impress your guests. You can rent upscale chairs along with decorative buffet tables and these items may be upgraded as often as every 12 months to suit your changing needs.

With careful thought and detailed organization, your dinner party is sure to be a success. Being well prepared ahead of time will also allow you to mingle with your guests more and enjoy the party you’ve painstakingly prepared.

Image courtesy of gjnairn/

Leave a Reply