Alcohol is so much a part of the idea of entertaining that it’s hard to image an Alcohol Free Dinner Party, let alone know where to start with one.
But Alexandria Blaelock, author of Stress Free Dinner Parties: How to plan, host and enjoy your party says “Don’t let your choice to go alcohol free prevent you from inviting your friends for a meal; with a little creativity, you can host a “dry” event you’ll all enjoy.”
Here are Blaelock’s tips for an alcohol free dinner party:
- Let Your Guest Know Your Event is Dry: Alcohol is deeply embedded within most Western cultures; it’s used to celebrate, commiserate, and relax. A function without it is more or less unthinkable for most. Even when they know that you don’t drink. If your guests expect alcohol, and don’t find it they will be disappointed and there may be some unpleasantness..
- Decide Whether Bring Your Own is Okay: For many guests, a bottle of wine or some other alcoholic beverage is an automatic hostess gift. Even if you’ve told them it’s an alcohol free event, they may arrive with some. You need to decide whether you’ll let them to drink it when they get there, and if not, make it clear you would appreciate it if they didn’t bring it.
- Don’t Default to Non-Alcoholic Versions of Alcohol: Most people will feel cheated when presented with no or low alcohol beers, wines and ciders when they can’t have the real thing. Look for non alcoholic drinks your guests may not be familiar with and can enjoy as new experiences. Try herbal cordials or elixirs, or other imported drinks.
- Don’t Rely on Ready Made Beverages: We all appreciate a Coke or Fanta now and again. But most soft drinks are so overwhelmingly sweet that they change the flavour of the food. Try to match your food and drinks, with a good mix of sweet, dry and savoury flavours.
- Serve Fun Drinks: Even though they’re non-alcoholic, drinks that are fizzy or coloured feel more fun than those that aren’t. Experiment with aromas, layers and unexpected combinations of flavour.
With Alexandria’s tips, an alcohol free dinner party can be fun and adventurous. You can relax and enjoy your evening without worry.
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