If you are looking for dinner party tips, this handy kitchen checklist will help to make your evening run smoothly
You’ve written the guest list, planned the entertainment and set a date. But, as every good party host knows, the kitchen is where the magic really happens – your food and refreshments can make the evening fly or flop.
Read these tips for the ultimate dinner party kitchen checklist, and find out how appliances can help you stay cool and enjoy the big night.
1. Plenty of flowing drinks
Every great host knows how important it is to provide a range of refreshments. Avoid sticking to the safe options – like mid-range beers and wines – and ensure you have a real selection, catering for teetotal guests or those who may be driving.
A stock of teas and coffees is essential for when the party dies down – but fruit juices and mocktails work well beforehand. Make sure your drinks are set out to impress, for the best dinner party impact.
Even if your party is operating on a bring-your-own-wine arrangement, always have a stock of alternatives on offer – chilled and ready to serve. It’s a simple detail, but presenting guests with a cocktail upon arrival can really make them feel looked after. First impressions count. For luxury drink inspiration, take a look at this guide from Elle Decor.
2. A well-stocked spice cabinet
If you’re a regular host, the pantry spice cabinet should be permanently stocked so you are able to whip up an impressive meal in no time.
Herbs and spices are the secret to any successful occasion – including easy aromatic burgers for spontaneous summer barbecues, and even the perfect Christmas dinner. After all, there’s nothing that gets guests talking quite like mouth-watering food.
3. A range cooker with separate ovens
The cooker is the focal point of your kitchen. A large cooker like this 90cm, dual fuel model from Fisher & Paykel, will effortlessly achieve this aim – and provide the practical efficiency to make your evening effortless.
The two-cavity design on this model makes it easy to cook several courses or dishes at once – so you can be preparing the Hors d’oeuvres while the main meal is separately roasting, and make use of the five cooktop hobs. With five unique settings, from grill to fan bake, you’ll have every dish ready to serve in no time.
To leave an impression as the host with the most, and if you’re looking for an investment, a range cooker is a must-have.
4. Quick, impressive snacks
Nibbles and canapés are the essentials for a smooth-running party. The trick is to prepare these in advance, and keep them refrigerated until just before guests arrive.
Dignified dips like hummus and tzatziki should be kitchen staples – as well as quality bread and other appetisers. These are great tactical secrets to hosting the perfect party – lay them out with cocktails before guests arrive, to prevent any hungry clockwatching while you prepare the first course.
5. A little help from gadgets
We are entering a new age of household gadgets, and it’s no secret that they can simplify our lives hugely. From robotic cleaners to assistants equipped with artificial intelligence, home dining is going through a tech revolution.
But, have you heard of these great gadgets that seem purpose-built for party hosts?
Corkcicle make high tech poles, cooling wines and beers from within the bottle, with aerate technology to bring out the best flavour from your wines.
Meanwhile, the iGrill just might change your barbecue hosting experience forever. If you’re tired of feeling chained to the grill while everyone else has fun, look no further. This nifty device measures the temperature of meats as they cook, alerting you when it’s cooked – so you can mingle and enjoy the party.
6. Don’t forget the ice
Last but not least, remember to keep a good stock of ice. As you race around planning the big party, it can be easy to overlook the basics – but most sophisticated drinks will require it, and a mojito without crushed ice is never quite the same.
To save space in the freezer and keep ice constantly flowing, consider a freestanding ice maker.