Whether it’s your first holiday away from family or your tenth celebrating with friends, adding framework to your gathering will help the food and drink flow smoothly. Follow these ten steps to organizing a fun and unforgettable wine lover’s Friendsgiving.
Without it, it wouldn’t be a celebration. Always stock the fridge with spares—Carménère is a great bet—then divvy up drink duty, letting each guest pair a bottle with their dish.
Plastic and wine don’t mix, plus stems lend elegance to the table. Pick up a case of inexpensive expendables or mix and match vintage glasses. Add a decanter for extra flair.
3. The Bird
For many, it’s tradition. The host shoulders responsibility for brining and basting the turkey to juicy perfection. Sound like mission impossible? Why not swap poultry for a foolproof, wine-versatile meat like pork shoulder? Cooked low and slow, you (almost) can’t destroy it.
4. Side Dishes
Coordinate a potluck, assigning in advance the starch, kale, casserole, autumn salad, and salted caramel ice cream to avoid overlap. Don’t forget to ask about allergies, but feel free to ignore lifestyle diet requests.
Spotify has “mood” stations, letting you switch with a swipe instead of tediously compiling a playlist.
Flowers and decorative gourds (‘tis the season, folks), a string of twinkly lights, and lots of dripping candles create memorable ambience.
7. Wine Chat
Whoever brought a bottle shares where it’s from, the grape(s) inside, and why they picked it. Collectively swirl, smell, sip, and swallow. Is it fruity or earthy? Dry or sweet? And most important, do you like it?
8. Fun Topics
Prepare games or fun discussion topics like dream wine destinations. Who wants to visit Chile? Awkward pauses and politics kill moods.
Supply takeout boxes, corks, and grocery bags. Send guests home with lunch-worthy leftovers and half-bottles.
After a night of wine, someone else should drive. Uber, Lyft, or the old-fashioned taxi will do the trick.