Tips for Throwing a Memorable Dinner Party

Now that the world has started to reopen, socialization has become a priority (and a delight!) for many. You may have been eager for well over a year to get together with friends and/or family once again. Now that it’s possible, it’s only fitting to throw a memorable dinner party for everyone to enjoy.

Having your social circle over for drinks or dinner will already feel like a treat, considering the circumstances we’ve had to live through. But, it’s never a bad idea to host a party that will leave your guests talking and complimenting for days.

With that in mind, what can you do to make your next dinner event more memorable than ever? Let’s go over a few helpful tips that will turn any party into an instant success.

Make It Irresistible

When it comes to entertaining, the more the merrier. A great dinner party starts with engaged, excited guests. If you want to increase the attendance at your party, there are a few tips you should keep in mind when sending out invitations.

First, people want to know it will be convenient. No one wants to go to a party and have to worry about parking, what to bring, what to wear, or even what to expect. Those items should all be clear in your invitations.

In addition to making things easy on your guests, entice them with what the party will include. You can create a theme or a cause, making it a charitable event for everyone to enjoy and feel good about. Or, you can list the benefits your guests can expect, including things like:

• Cocktails
• Appetizers
Live entertainment
• Social time

When guests can use an event like a dinner party as a networking opportunity, they’re more likely to come early and stay late. Your invitations, no matter how they’re sent, should be about more than just the dinner itself. Let your guests know you want them to stay, chat, and enjoy.

Provide Unique Entertainment

Yes, we mentioned having live entertainment. It’s an important thing not to overlook! It’s okay to think past the traditional background music you might have playing at a traditional dinner party. After all, everyone has been cooped up for over a year. Having some fun and thinking “outside the box” will undoubtedly appeal to guests of all ages.

If you can afford it, consider hiring a live band or orchestral quartet, depending on the theme. If you really want your guests to feel relaxed, try something like an outdoor movie night or host your own “film fest” with an upscale feel by showing short foreign films and having your guests vote for their favorites. It could even become a yearly tradition. If you have the yard, a streaming device, and a projector, you can turn your outdoor entertainment space into a luxury theater.

Since we’ve been unable to socialize for so long, entertainment that allows your guests to connect is also a wonderful idea. Consider turning your dinner party into a “murder mystery” night.

Secretly give every guest a role to play and clues/information throughout the evening so they can work together to solve the mystery and catch a killer. Getting creative is one of the golden rules of hosting a successful dinner party. So, be willing to cut loose and have fun with your entertainment choices. Your guests will thank you for it.

Focus On the Food

What’s a dinner party without … dinner? Having a theme in mind can make it easier to choose what to serve. But, no matter what you go with, there are a few basic rules to keep in mind when it comes to proper etiquette and ensuring your guests will enjoy what you’ve prepared. Keep these ideas in mind as you’re putting together a menu:

• Offer at least two main dish options
• Ask guests in advance to RSVP with any food allergies/sensitivities
• Offer something for vegetarians/vegans

When it comes to courses, it’s always a good idea to start with something light. Focus on vegetables for the first course or two, or a very lean protein like fish. Depending on your theme or the time of year, make sure each course has a purpose and serves as a reflection of what’s in season.

Finally, finish off your dinner with something fun and delightful. You’ll never go wrong with a chocolate dessert. But, you don’t want your guests to leave feeling sluggish and overly full. Even if you consider yourself a strong cook in the kitchen, it can be beneficial to work with a caterer or professional chef when you’re hosting a dinner party. They know how to create appropriate portion sizes that will leave your guests satiated and comfortable by the end of the night.

Throwing an elegant dinner party doesn’t have to be stressful or overwhelming. It should be just as enjoyable for you as it is for your guests. Keep these tips in mind if you’re itching to entertain, and you’ll be able to put together a memorable event that will leave your guests eager to receive your next invitation.