Anatomy of a Dinner Party: a day in the life of a hospitalityaholic
 

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Strike a Pose – Vogue (TableVogue)

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings,

With all the summer parties still to come, you’ll want your tables to look festive.

I love a pretty tablecloth but want it to look perfect without ironing. You, too?

Enter, TableVogue. I swear by these. Truly. Open up your six foot folding table and throw it on. Voila! You look like the perfect hostess. Saving you more time to pick out the perfect party dress. Or have that cocktail before the crowds descend. I don’t judge.

How perfectly pretty is this?

Buy these stunners here. And they didn’t even pay me to tell you about them. I love them that much.

xoxo, Patti

Feeling Golden

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings!

The sun is finally shining in Atlanta.

Madea and me are loving this weather.

In honor of the sun shining, I am posting gold things today.

I bought these gold beauties on a recent shopping trip in Tampa with bestie Holly (we saw U2, too, but that’s another story).

There’s no place like gold…

And Eric and I finally got around to bottling up the limoncello that has been brewing for months in the pantry (note to self: don’t let it sit so long next time).

The homemade stuff is on the left.

 

Here’s a fun recipe for a yummy cocktail to make with your limoncello. Limoncello Gin Cocktail with Grilled Thyme.

What’s making you feel golden this summer?

xoxo, Patti

 

St. Simons Island-The Shocking Truth Part 1

Friday, May 19th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings,

After spending four days in St. Simons Island, I must confess. There are secrets there. Many secrets.

And I’m going to share them ALL with you! From the local gossip to how the other half lives, I won’t hold anything back.

Let’s start with the cuisine. What are they feeding folks to give them all that dreamy, swoony looks in their eyes? I went in to get the scoop just for you. Research, of course.

The first night there, I dressed for dinner and made my way to the Solarium. I’m pretty sure I saw Jay Gatsby lingering in the corner, drinking champagne. A well-heeled server offered me a Due West cocktail on a platter. It would be inhospitable not to accept. Research, remember. Our group was met by Chef James Flack and I then spied two gigantic displays of 20+ pound fish and an assortment of seafood on a table facing the Atlantic Ocean and its lulling waves. I was starting to feel relaxed. Too relaxed. Was I falling under a spell?

Chef Flack and his fish

A closer look at those fish

Wine glasses clinked and course after course of luscious seafood was brought to our table. Sparkling conversation ensued. I could see how a mere mortal might succumb to such delights. But not I! I was stronger than that.

You know I can’t resist a beautifully set table.

Luscious Crab Cakes

Grouper over grits

Perhaps just one more bite of the creme’ brulee before retreating to my king sized bed where the only sound was waves crashing on the beach.

The most amazing creme brulee.

No, not I….zzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

xoxo, Patti

The Chad – It’s A Drink!

Friday, May 5th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings,

St. Simons Island was a swoony dream. I can’t wait to share all my secrets.

For today, I will leave you with a cocktail I enjoyed when I visited. It’s called the Chad. It was created by, well, you know, The Chad.

Take a look at the recipe here and make one (or three) for you and some friends this weekend. It is divine! Click here to watch the real life Chad show you how to make it! I love that southern accent.

Oh you are going to love this!

Make a Chad or two and welcome the month of May! More to come!

xoxo, Patti

AOADP – On Location!

Saturday, April 29th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings,

For the next 4 days I will be on location, bringing you tons of fun photos and trip bits.

Where am I going? Can you guess?

Tomorrow I’ll be here!

Join me for more fun!

xoxo, Patti

Hop To It Bunny – At 14th Street Antiques!

Friday, April 14th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings!

Easter is right around the corner. I LOVE Easter – all the pretty colors, the nice weather, the leftover ham. What’s not to love?

My favorite thing is to set the table. I attended a meeting this week at 14th Street Antiques and Modern Home and wowza, do they have gorgeous things to set the table with. Take a gander, my little geese.

All that glitters, might be gold!

Swimming in glamour.

Always welcome your guests with a drink.

And for all you Easter fans like me, there’s even a sale on all things spring and gilded. Love.

Color me glitter!

Go visit my fabulous friend Lisa over at 14th Street Antiques and Modern Home and tell her I sent you. You could spend the entire day in there.

xoxo, Patti

Dinner Parties 101 and Traveller Bar

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

Good Morning Darlings!

With spring in the air, I am dying to start planning some outdoor parties. Our new (100+ year old) house has a gigantic front porch that faces a very busy and loud road, but I’m still determined to throw a porch party (or three) this spring to bring together friends old and new for adult beverages and fun conversation.

What do I do for inspiration? Why, I do the same as you – I read dinner party blogs! I love this one, Cup of Jo, who gathered tips from tons of party givers. I even learned a new tip or two.

Warmer weather makes us want to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Or a drive to somewhere indoors. Recently, Eric and I enjoyed a night out at Saltwood, the hotel restaurant at the Loews Atlanta. I am swoony for a hotel bar and restaurant and Saltwood did not disappoint. Incredibly charcuterie, and gorgeous craft cocktails at their new Traveller Bar, which may be gone by now. It’s a pop up! Take a look.

Traveller Bar, as seen in LA. It looks the same in Atlanta! 🙂

And here in Atlanta. Photo credit, Eater Atlanta

I will admit, instead of having dessert in the restaurant, we retired to the bar for another cocktail. So good. Special thanks to our sweet friend, Rachel Peavy, who is the PR Maven for the Loews Atlanta. It was so much fun running into her and catching up.

Go forth, and entertain your friends. Mix up some fresh lemonade and add a bit of grenadine to make it pink and then some vodka to make it boozy. It is such a lovely springtime cocktail! Here’s a great version!

xoxo, Patti

 

 

Happy New Year!

Monday, January 2nd, 2017

Good Morning Darlings!

Happy 2017 to you all. Hope your celebrations were fabulous and safe.

We threw a tiny party for 8. The menu:

Cheese & Salami Platter with Sea Salt Crackers & Holman & Finch Semolina Bread

Caviar Service with fresh buckwheat blini, sour cream and chives

Veggie lasagna

Salad filled with olives, artichokes, bermuda onions topped with a lemon basil dressing
Garlic Bread
Assorted Cupcakes
More than our share of Segura Viudas Cava

Table Decor provided by my friends at TLC Rents. I chose a purple and gold theme. Purple tablecloth with a gold sequined overlay. Purple napkins. Tons of votives. And for extra interest, small plastic dinosaurs were placed all around the table. Always opt for whimsy when you can. Look around the house – you will surprise yourself.

Since our party was so tiny, I decided not to post any photos of the guests. But – you can see the table below.

It’s like you are right there next to me!

Tell me about your night!

xoxo, Patti

Ready, Set Bubbles!

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

Good Morning Darlings!

NYE 2017 is just days away – how will you celebrate?

We will celebrate in a very different way this year. A tiny little fete’ for 8.

If you have been following me for any time at all, you know my absolute go-to for bubbles is Segura Viudas Brut Cava. Honestly, it’s as tasty as wines that are 3 times the price and its $8 price tag allows me to buy in bulk (truly, I have 3 cases at the house – you never know who will stop by!) My friends can always count on me to provide them with a glass of bubbles. Life is a celebration, drink it in. Does that sound cheesy? It’s okay to be cheesy!

When the lovely folks at Segura Viudas got in touch about their new Reserva Heredad (SRP $25), I jumped at the chance to try it. Look how fancy the bottle is!

THE Drink for NYE 2017

With only a few faves gathering, a few bottles are affordable and why not spoil your besties? We will be feasting on roasted veggie lasagna bathed in bechamel sauce, yummy garlic bread, crisp salad, caviar and a surprise dessert.

The pop of Segura Viudas Reserva Heredad will be our soundtrack as the clock strikes midnight.

It should be your go-to, too! Happy New Year!!

xoxo, Patti

ps – Check out the fabulous music video on their site. It will get you all revved up to party! 🙂

Lemonlicious

Friday, March 25th, 2016

Good Morning Darlings!

I’ve been so busy lately, but I’ve missed you! And now it’s almost Easter.

Bestie Melanie is cooking dinner and I am contributing deviled eggs and lemon meringue cupcakes. Don’t these cupcakes sound divine? Take a look at how pretty they are!

LemonCupcakes

Now, that isn’t my finished product, but it did come from the lovely people at Nielsen-Massey, who were so kind to send me their gorgeous vanilla AND lemon extract so I could recreate this masterpiece at home.

And, it would not be kind of me to keep the recipe all to myself. Here you go – make these and look like a superstar this Sunday!

Lemon Cupcakes with Marshmallow Meringue(Makes 2 Dozen)

For the Cupcakes:
2½ cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1½ cups sugar
2 tablespoons lemon zest (3-4 large lemons)
2 teaspoons Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract
½ teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Pure Lemon Extract
3 large eggs
½ cup low-fat buttermilk

Directions
Preheat oven to 350?F. Place paper liners into two standard cupcake tins; set aside. In a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder and salt; whisk to blend and set aside.In a large mixing bowl, add butter, sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla and lemon extracts. With a handheld mixer, beat on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Reduce speed to low. Add dry ingredients one-half at a time, alternating with buttermilk; beat after each addition and scrape sides of bowl as needed. Do not overmix batter.Fill each liner with about ¼ cup batter and bake until done, about 18 minutes. Carefully place cupcakes in 2 (9 x 13) pans and cover with plastic wrap; set aside to cool. Make sure the wrap does not touch the cupcake tops; this method of cooling will make deliciously moist cupcakes.

For the Marshmallow Meringue:
4 egg whites
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
¼ cup sugar
1 cup marshmallow creme
½ teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract
¼ teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Pure Lemon Extract

Directions
In a large bowl, add egg whites and cream of tartar. With a handheld mixer, beat on medium-high speed until foamy. Increase mixer speed to high and gradually add sugar until soft peaks form.Add marshmallow creme, vanilla and lemon extracts, and beat until combined. Using the back of a spoon, mound and creatively swirl meringue onto each cooled cupcake.Place cupcakes on a rimmed sheet pan. Use a handheld kitchen torch or place under a broiler and toast until golden brown. If using the broiler method, watch to ensure meringue does not over brown.

xoxo, Patti