Wine Party 101 – Part 2
As mentioned in my last blog, this series of blogs is for those who want to hold a wine party or wine event but may feel a bit intimidated. However, the key to a good wine event (or any party) is to create the right atmosphere. My last blog was about serving excellent quality wine. And while this is one of the most important aspects of a successful wine event, food is also important. Believe it or not, the food that you serve helps to create the atmosphere of your gathering.
I remember my first wine party. The advice that I was given was to be sure that the party was about the wine and not the food and thus to serve small amounts of finger food that would pair well with the wine but not overshadow it. However, I’m a southern girl (you know, southern hospitality and all that) and because it was an evening event and I was concerned that my guests may not have eaten dinner, I prepared a lot of food! From fancy dips, to braised short ribs, meatballs in marinara sauce and decadent chocolate cake, my guests were inundated with such rich flavors that the wine became an afterthought. They left talking about the wonderful food and not the wine which defeated the entire purpose of the event!
I no longer make this mistake. My last very successful event had good finger food. Rather than making hot dips and cooking a full meal, we had a charcuterie and cheese plate, tuna and roast beef slices, salad and for the finale, chocolate cake (I still could not resist the chocolate cake)! A few guests also brought home-made bread and coconut macaroons. It was the perfect amount of food (no one was hungry) but the wine was the star! In fact, my guests tried different finger foods with each wine and really enjoyed exploring how the wines paired with the different foods. Because I did not serve heavy foods, my guests could comfortably try each wine and give each of them their undivided attention! So, lesson number 2, serve quality but light foods at your wine parties and wine events! And stay tuned for my next blog. You will not want to miss it. It’s about creating the perfect guest list!