Majority of the time you eat with your eyes first and let your stomach digest everything you saw before choosing the best contender. I have worked in the restaurant business for quite some time now and I have learned that it’s one of the best businesses to be in for people watching. On a daily basis I observe people dealing with one of the hardest choices life gives us to make…what to order off the menu!?! Oh, and if there are no pictures on the menu it becomes twice as hard because your brain has to imagine what it’s going to look like before it imagines what it might taste like. Servers are on the floor playing charades with the guests, miming out how big something is…but wait…what was that? Another server just walked by with a plate of food that looked heavenly and without further a-due, you have your heart set on it because you just devoured it with your eyes before your mouth even got the chance This just goes to show that food presentation and the atmosphere of your party DO make a huge impact on your guests. Here are a few tips on setting the scene:
- Play with colors, textures and personalized touches to create the right vibe for your event. Have you ever walked into a restaurant only to leave before ordering because the “vibe” just wasn’t quite right? Too many fake plants weird me out and really bright lights during dinner service gets on my nerves. Before we even get to the food, we already have an opinion of the place or event. Don’t stress yourself out over this though, there are a lot of simple details that will make your guests feel comfortable and “thought of”, which in my opinion is one of the best feelings
- Have fun with lighting. I received my Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design and one of my favorite classes in school was lighting. It is amazing how different applications of lighting can really change the look of a space. From up-lighting plants and walls to highlighting art or having dinner by candlelight, you can really set the scene with fun lighting presentations. Try one of these great ideas:
Candlelight is one of the best lights in the whole wide world! If you’re throwing a dinner party, candles are a must! They can make your event sophisticated and elegant or intimate and romantic. Just remember that if you’re going to light a lot of them, be sure to purchase unscented candles so you don’t overwhelm your guests with a scent they may not care for.
Light Up your centerpieces with waterproof LED Lights. They come in all different colors and add a special touch to your centerpieces. You can also add a couple drops of food coloring to the water to give it a colorful glow that compliments the theme of your event.
Most craft stores will supply these lights, but if you are buying them in bulk for a large event, you’re best bet is to purchase them online.
Twinkle Twinkle little lights….I LOVE string lights! If you are having an outdoor celebration, string lights are a must! They add a whimsical feel that will wow your guests. The best part is that they are inexpensive and you can use them time and time again!
- Plate your food like an artist creating his masterpiece. Think about how your food will be presented ahead of time to avoid the”Ewww…everything on the plate is the same color” moment. Have fun with plating; treat your plate like a blank canvas. Be creative highlighting the textures and colors of the food you are cooking. Think outside of the box experimenting with unexpected ways of serving foods and playing with layers, sauces and garnishes like these:
As you can see, from lighting, decorations and personal touches to the way you plate your cuisine, there are endless ways to incorporate the sense of sight into your event. Pinterest is a great place to find inspiration; try creating a board for an upcoming event and pinning photos, recipes and ideas that inspire you. Follow Calico Girl on Pinterest by clicking here!Check back tomorrow for the final post on Entertaining Your Senses, where we will explore the powerful sense of sound!