Luau parties are fabulous because you can create a festive atmosphere with fresh decorations. Since this is a dinner party, the focal point should be the dining table you set up outdoors. If you are crafty and have plenty of time on your hands, get a gorgeous piece of Hawaiian shirt fabric at the local fabric store and make a tablecloth. Otherwise purchase a bright yellow tablecloth and fuchsia tiki placemats. Square shaped plates with a palm tree print look stylish and elegant when a napkin with a palm tree ring is placed atop. Fill bowls with floating flower shaped candles and create a centerpiece with beautiful hibiscus flowers. Seashells hold place settings with guests' names written in loopy handwriting. Tiki torches add mood lighting and cast a Hawaiian glow to the fete. For music select a playlist of classic surf music like the Beach Boys or the soundtrack from Point Break. Scroll below to see all of the ideas.
At all of my dinner parties, I offer guests one signature cocktail with appetizers, followed by a couple bottles of wine with dinner. I am a fan of a full open bar and pleasing my friends with whatever drink floats their fancy, but I do this when a small group is coming over for drinks only. At a dinner party, there are other things to worry about - the food, the mingling of new friends with old, etc. - so it's easier to make one big cocktail that fits the theme. Don't make an endless amount, a few pitchers full is sufficient. For this week's tropical themed dinner party, a colorful rum punch is ideal. Fresh raspberries give it a festive look and lime slices act as garnish. Sparkling and still water refreshes guests, and a mixture of fresh lemonade and pineapple juice is refreshing for those who do not consume alcohol. With the mahi mahi main course pour California Chardonnay or an Australian Riesling. If you must have red wine, serve a light bodied Beaujolais. For the raspberry rum punch recipe as pictured at left read more
When planning a dinner party, look for simpler recipes that can be made in advance. After the tropical chicken skewer and vegetable spring roll appetizers, invite guests to join you at the table. A macadamia nut crusted mahi mahi bakes in the oven while its sauce waits warm on the stove. Place the sauce in a gravy bowl or small pitcher so guests can serve themselves at the table. Coconut rice will pair nicely on the side.
After dinner gather the guests back in your kitchen and let them caramelize the sugar on their very own Tahitian vanilla creme brulees! Take a look at these tempting tropical recipes, just read more
The best thing about hosting a themed dinner party, is that it's fairly easy to create a menu. Select dishes that you feel confident serving to guests. Instead of offering several sit down courses, have appetizers ready and waiting when the guests arrive. Guests can mingle, sip cocktails, and enjoy hors d'oeurves before sitting down to the dining table. Instantly transport everyone to a sandy island with balmy breezes by serving tropical chicken on sugarcane skewers with peanut-plantain dipping sauce or vegetarian spring rolls. Get these finger licking good recipes, just read more
I've been planning so many large bashes these past few weeks, that I decided to do something a little more intimate this week. Dinner parties are my favorite kind of party and they are even easier to host when you have a theme to plan everything around. There is no better theme for summer than a fabulous tropical soirée! Bright flowers, plush textures, soothing waves, and cool cocktails bring you and seven close friends together for a tasty dinner. This party can be held anywhere from a deck with an view of the Pacific, to a teeny apartment with no balcony, just adapt the theme to fit your needs. To get things started, I'm making a gorgeous invitation that will get guests in the mood the second it arrives in the mail. To see step by step instructions on how to make this invite, read more