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Progressive Party | Great Performances


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Progressive Party
by GP Family

Have you ever partook in a progressive dinner party? More importantly, have you even heard of a progressive dinner party? If not, here is a quick definition courtesy of Wikipedia: "A progressive dinner (US) or safari supper (UK) is a dinner party with successive courses prepared and eaten at the residences of different hosts. Usually this involves the consumption of one course at each location. Involving travel, it is a variant on a potluck dinner and is sometimes known as a round-robin."

These traveling suppers first gained popularity in the 1950s and then lost some of their fashionableness in the 1980s and 1990s. However, the parties are now coming back in vogue, especially in large cities where it is common to host a progressive dinner party with groups of friends within the same apartment building. What a luxury, being able to attend a moving dinner party without leaving your heated apartment building! 

In case you find yourself invited to one of these traveling dinners this holiday season, we have enlisted the help of our design, beverage, and culinary teams for advice on how to best prepare for whatever course you are dealt. 

Cocktails: LA Thompson, Beverage Director

 "For a progressive party, I would recommend sticking with one specialty cocktail that can be batched in a large quantity - something fun and different. My favorite for the holidays is The Antidote. Rock & Rye, a sometimes-medicinal spirit with roots from the 1800s, is starting to make a comeback. Its Old Fashioned-esque flavors of honey and orange peel are perfect for a holiday evening. Also, glassware and presentation are key. A gigantic punch bowl or a crystal carafe are as much a part of the conversation as the drink itself.” 

Appetizers: Callie Fisher, Event Director

“I always think it’s best to choose easy to make and share hdvs. My favorite dish is Pancetta and Fig cups. They’re also perfect for winter!"

Design Tip: Danica Adler, Design Director

"Add freshness and seasonality to your classic white passing dishes by first laying down a leafy green or a row of fresh herbs and arranging the hors d'oeuvres on top. Accent the corner of the tray with a pop of color from a floral bud or add texture and stability to tasting spoons or irregular shaped treats by filling the base of your tray with uncooked red lentils."

Main, Chef Mark Russell:

“Braising dishes, such as short ribs, fair best because you can throw them in the oven earlier in the day. Then, head to the cocktail portion of the evening, come home, and take your dish out just as you and your guests arrive at your home for dinner.” View Chef Mark's simple recipe for Braised Turkey Legs here, a great braised alternative for guests who don't eat red meat

Design Tip: Danica Adler, Design Director

"Set aside some fresh herbs and fruit to garnish your meat when serving. Often being the largest thing on the table, adding some vibrance, life and texture will allow the dish be a true centerpiece."

Dessert: Chef Rob Valencia

“Have something that’s preset and requires no preparation, such as a pie or cake. I recommend a Cranberry Pear Crumble Pie – seasonal and a crowd-pleaser. The only thing left to do upon arrival should be to pop open the bottle of champagne!" 

Design Tip: Danica Adler, Design Director

Channel the mouthwatering look of a bakery pastry case on your dessert table. Utilize levels and height with a collection of cake stands and decorative serving pieces. The more eclectic the better!

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