TJaehnigen, over in the picky eaters thread, said:
and it got me thinking..
Maybe I'm just a "dinner party nazi", but there is an art (and a science) to hosting a great dinner gathering for friends....
it's probably unusual in that I put a lot of thought into my parties, but they are almost all casual - small children have put a crimp in the multicourse, plated extravaganzas of the past. But the truth is, I don't much care for overly formal occasions*. Gatherings at my house involve too much food, good drinks, music, and conversation. If a spontaneous rave breaks out in the kitchen, all the better. There's sometime a food theme, but more often it's what I feel like cooking. My menus have ranged from the Gourmet magazine 50th anniversary dinner (featuring a pistachio dacquoise that took three days) to chili and jalapeno cornbread.
The guest list is crucial. I take great pains to invite people that I know will have a good time together, and delight in introducing people from different parts of my life.
So, dr.com folks, how many of you have dinner parties? Is there a science to it? How much planning do you put into it? What's a typical menu? And if you never entertain, why not? (lack of space, or time, or...?)
* ETA: actually, I like formal parties. I just don't like giving them. Nerves, maybe.