Hosting dinner parties is a great way to entertain friends and have a great time over food and wine. Cookouts are also great but many people think it’s strictly a hot dog and bear affair. The reality is that there are ways to host a unique and upscale cookout for something different.
You can elevate a simple meal held outdoors into an elegant evening with good food, good wine, and great company. If you have some space outside and some elegant rattan patio furniture, then you are already halfway there to hosting an upscale cookout. In this article, we will go over several tips.
1 – Menu selection
When it comes to the menu for an upscale cookout, the key is to elevate traditional BBQ dishes into gourmet experiences. Start by thinking of classic cookout favorites, then add a twist. For instance, instead of regular burgers, consider cooking up some lamb or salmon burgers with homemade buns and unique toppings like goat cheese or avocado.
Having a theme for the cookout is a great way to make it feel more upscale. You can set the theme to a certain cuisine to make things interesting. For instance, choose a traditional cuisine like Moroccan or Italian and cook some recipes on the grill from those countries.
Pairing beverages with your menu is another way to enhance the dining experience. For instance, a light, crisp white wine can pair beautifully with grilled seafood, while a robust red might be perfect for steak.
2 – Set the scene
Setting the scene for your upscale cookout is about creating an inviting and elegant atmosphere. Since the event should be somewhat sophisticated, the decor should reflect that.
Use tablecloths, runners, and napkins that reflect the theme of the cookout. For a touch of elegance, use real plates, silverware, and glassware instead of disposable tableware.
Lighting can really take the atmosphere to another level. Wrapping fairy lights around the trees and on the fence is a way to create a very elegant ambiance. Lanterns or candles on tables add a cozy, intimate feel.
The choice of music is one of the biggest factors for a successful upscale cookout. Something that adds some atmosphere without overpowering the mood. It should be something like jazz or ambient music that allows for people to have conversation.
3 – Entertainment options
Cookouts almost always feature some kind of lawn game and an upscale event is no exception. Think of some games that are not too intense. For instance, a game of croquet or bocce ball can be leisurely yet still fun. These games are classic and can be played with a drink in hand. This way guests can mingle and enjoy themselves without too much physical exertion.
Live entertainment is a fantastic way to elevate the atmosphere of your cookout. While you may not want to have a full band that would easily get too loud, you can hire a solo guitarist to play some background music.