Top Tips for Entertaining in Winter
Having written a book about entertaining I think it’s fair to say I know a thing or two about throwing a soirée. In Australia we often wait for the warmer months before inviting guests over to enjoy the warmer weather. I think there’s definitely something cosy and fun about throwing a lovely dinner party in winter time too.
Here are some of my top tips for winter time entertaining!
1. Plan Your Menu
Warm comfort food is your best bet for a winter evening. Think soups, casseroles, roasts, hearty pasta sauces and slow cooked meats. Planning your menu in advance help you in the long run as throwing a dinner party can get stressful lining up all the finer details to ensure it’s a smooth evening. Checklists help significantly too, so write out all the things you need to do to prepare before the party. These can be things like sweeping the front porch, mop the kitchen floors, set the table and buying the ingredients for dinner. It’s also important to think about the menu flowing nicely, if you’re having an Italian themed night then your entrée, main and dessert should all be within that same vein. Don’t forget to check dietary requirements and allergies before planning too much of the menu too.
2. Style The Table
Why not get right into theme and style the table to suit the cuisine you’re serving up! Cheap party shops have plenty of table decor inspiration so you can style the table without spending a fortune. Think about things like tablecloths, napkins, candle sticks, vases and name cards if you want to get really formal. If it’s a fun, casual evening like Mexican Night, then a few additional ‘props’ like sombreos for the guests and mini piñata’s are a nice colourful addition.
Don’t forget to check you have enough serving ware for your party. If your dinner setting is only for 8 people but you’re expecting 12 guests you don’t want to get caught short when you go to serve everyone. Same goes for cutlery and glassware.
3. Set The Mood
We don’t just entertaining for the sake of eating a nice meal, we also entertaining to meet new people, catch up with old friends, discuss worldly topics over a nice meal and connect with people. Setting the mood greatly assists in setting up an environment in which everyone feels comfortable and ready to enjoy an evening in your home. Things like background music, candle light, overhead light, scents and comfy chairs all aid in setting the mood. You can think about the five senses when you’re setting up the party and ensure you’re catering to all five senses – taste, touch, sound, smell and sight.
If you’d like more entertaining tips, why not jump over to my store and purchase a copy of Keeping House. Keeping House is my second book focused on throwing a party and still getting your bond back!