November 25, 2021 3 min read1 Comment
10 Tips to Taking The Stress Out Of Festive Entertaining
Hosting a social gathering at home doesn't need to be a hassle nor stressful! Here’s our top 10 tips that'll help you relax and be a guest at your own party.
1. Dietary Needs
Find out about people’s dietary needs in advance so there’s no surprises on the day. Are they vegetarian or vegan, gluten intolerant, have allergies to nuts, non-consumers of alcohol? Always have alcohol-free drink options on offer when catering for non-drinkers, as well as drinkers wanting to moderate their consumption of alcohol.
2. Outsource Food Prep
Consider outsourcing the food to a local caterer (especially ones who may have been impacted by covid) otherwise be sure to prepare your food ahead, so you’re not left cooking and preparing when your guests have arrived. Never cook a complicated dish for the first time on the day of your event – not everything goes to plan on the day and always have a back-up plan!
3. Help! Ask For It
Take the stress out of managing everything on your own, delegate and ask others to help. Opening the door, drink refilling, clearing the table, stacking the dishwasher etc – outsource these to a designated helper for the day so you can mingle, connect and be available!
4. Traffic Plan
Plan ahead so you’ll know exactly what and when to serve drinks and food based on the weather for the day and how long people are staying over for. Don’t serve everything at once! Start with a welcoming drink such as Sangria or Pimms (make both alcoholic and non-alcoholic options) or lighter style drinks paired with nibbles, before moving on to entrée’s, mains, deserts etc. You could go down the tapas path or grazing platters before mains and finishing on something sweet if that takes your fancy.
Consider food and beverage pairing, the trick is in identifying the key flavours in your food and pairing it with those in your beverage. Pairing food with wine is all about finding one of the four basic tastes - sweet, salty, sour or bitter - in a dish and finding a drink that fits with it, either by having similar qualities or by contrasting them properly. Red wine is commonly paired with beef, wine & cheese, white wine & seafood, beer with any food, dessert with sweet wines.
6. Feature with Your Own Concoction
Consider making a ‘house cocktail or mocktail’ – create a twist on your favourite drink, mix it up, garnish and serve – it makes a great talking point and you’ll be so proud seeing others enjoy your own creation! Check out our range of flavoursome recipes that are also good for you!
7. Impress with your Barware
Presentation is key and what better way to impress is with stunning glassware to serve up delicious drinks to add a sense of luxury to every occasion. Copper glasses are on trend, unique and functional (drinks in copper glasses taste better and are kept cooler for longer!). The rose-gold colour casts a wonderful glow, giving an elegant and sophisticated drinking experience. Check out our range Barware here.
8. Gift Giving
Call us traditional but don’t forget to bring a gift for the host and hostess to say thank you such as a bottle of Rochester Ginger or Norfolk Punch! Even if you’re told not to bring anything, bring something small such as pot plant, a bottle of your favourite drink, a fruit platter, chocolates, fresh flowers – the list is endless!
9. The Clean-Up
By appointing a designated helper (a good friend or family member) earlier on, starting with a clean kitchen and cleaning as you go, you should be able to get through the day without a big mess hanging over your head at the end. The best guests volunteer to help clean up – always accept! It also makes a good time to debrief and connect 1:1. When the fun’s over clean up fast and get out of the kitchen!
10. Don’t Talk Yourself Out Of It
Hosting at your home during the festive season can be overwhelming for some, and sound like such fun for others. Use the time to reconnect with the people who are important to you and you love, which is so important for our health and well-being. And don’t forget to b-r-e-a-t-h-e and smile. Following these tips will go a long way towards stress-free satisfaction.
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