ginger and salt

dinner party: {mini} diner en blanc.

I love a good dinner party.  In fact, entertaining and hosting are some of the only grown-up activities I can fully get behind. (Paying bills and being responsible for others? Still working on those.)

My roommate (and best friend of fifteen years) and I grew up in what felt like a perpetual dinner party.  Our childhood homes were only blocks apart and it didn’t matter if it was a Monday afternoon or a Saturday evening, if friends or neighbors were over, wine was being opened, music was on, and stories were being told.  As kids, we’d watch from the hallway when we were supposed to be in bed, but as the years passed we became full participants of these affairs, taking part in the adult conversations and sneaking glasses of Sauvignon Blanc.

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{Cam and I, busted by the kitchen paparazzi}

As a result, we love having our friends over and sharing a meal.  We’re typically pretty casual, but every once and awhile we like to go all out and luckily our friends are on always on board. It had been my dream this summer to host our own mini-version of France’s Diner en Blanc.  A tradition that started in Paris in the 80’s, Diner en Blanc is essentially a pop-up dinner party in a stunning location where guests wear all white, feast, and light sparklers.  (You can read more about the official event here.)

We invited our friends and neighbors Connor, Ryan, Joe, and Lauren over to our rooftop and the night was one of the most ethereal I’ve ever experienced.  The late August sunset bathed everyone in the most delicious rosy glow; we kept having to stop just to take it in (and to laugh about the stares we were getting from others on the roof).   As you’ll see below, everyone brought their culinary A-game.  At the end of the night, we packed everything back up and it looked like we had never been there.  Were it not for these pictures, I might have mistaken the night for a wonderful dream.

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{Ryan making cocktails with Lillet Rose, Prosecco Le Dolci Colline, and lime}

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{Feasting on Cam’s delicious French cheeses}

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{Taking it all in}

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{Gorgeous flowers from Lauren and Joe completed the table}

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{I made Ina Garten’s Lemon Chicken with Croutons}

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{Lauren’s stunning Balsamic Figs}

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{Cocktail hour}

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{I was able to make Ina’s Zucchini Vichysoisse the night before, as it’s served cold}

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{Cotton candy sky}

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{Rose gold glow}

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{The whole gang}

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{Connor’s Burrata and Pickled Nectarine Salad with Mache and Mint}

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{Action shot of Ryan making Pan con Tomate with grilled bread from Bakery Nouveau}

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{Ryan grilling the steaks circa 11 pm}

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{Ry’s Flank Steaks from Rain Shadow Meats (Gleason Ranch and Painted Hills)  with Chimichurri, Mini-Heirloom Tomatoes, and Red Onions.  Topped with shavings of Parmesan from The Calf and Kid.}

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{Connor’s Tea-Poached Plums which were then served atop slices of Cardamom Pound Cake and drizzled with Crème Fraîche}

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{Sheer joy}

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