It's that time of the year again when you dust off the family heirloom china and bring out Great Aunt Alice's prize winning pumpkin pie recipe. You probably have many traditional things you serve and use to celebrate Thanksgiving. Or, perhaps this is your first time hosting the holiday gathering. Here are a few suggestions to add a little sparkle to your day.
For a festive start to the dinner, serve a glass of sherry or perhaps a glass of Cranberry Sparkler to your guests as they arrive. With dinner, opt for a pinot noir as a red option and/or a chardonnay for a white wine option. If your "turkey timer" hasn't popped and you want something to finish, try a liqueur coffee or a small glass of either Baileys Irish Cream or Kahlua.
Have enough nibbles out in case of delays with the dinner. Not too much as to spoil the dinner but enough to soak up some of the alcoholic beverages.
When it comes to seating a large number of people, Less is definitely More, in terms of tablescapes. While it is really great to go overboard with the centerpieces and accessories, for large gatherings they will get in the way once everyone has sat down with their drinks. Simple items such as unusual small white pumpkins lined up the center of the table with candles will create a stunning tablescape and leave enough room for everyone's plates and glasses.
Other centerpiece ideas are:
Don't have enough napkin rings? Give some people napkin rings and use wire ribbon for the remaining, interchanging the real napkin rings with ribbon ones around the table.
Have a separate table setup with all the extra bits and pieces for the dinner like extra napkins, wine coolers, water pitchers and extra glasses. This will reduce the number of extra trips you need to make to the kitchen.
Think about where you want to seat everyone for dinner and use name cards to identify who is sitting where. This eliminates people sitting where they shouldn't, and it's also one less thing you have to worry about when getting everyone to the table.
Have small individual salt and peppers for everyone, that way people aren't having to reach over others in order to get condiments.
Rather than serving the dinner family style with the food lined down the center of the table, opt for having the food laid out on a buffet so that guests can help themselves or perhaps serve your guests.
For planning ideas checkout our Thanksgiving Planning Idea which includes a useful Thanksgiving Cheat Sheet.