Monday, December 20, 2010
By Julie Wiegan
Whether you’re the hostess or the guest, there are a few guidelines you need to follow. Kathryn Hall, owner and vintner of Hall Wines, and a former ambassador shares her expert tips on how to enjoy the holiday parties with proper etiquette.
Make guests comfortable with a warm, welcoming ambiance
Inspire holiday cheer with a lit fireplace, candles, festive place settings and inviting decorative elements. If you’re hosting a sit-down dinner, create seating arrangements in advance to avoid potentially awkward pairings.
“A Case Just in Case”
Always be prepared for the unexpected gift or a last minute invitation. Have a case of wine (such as Hall Wine) on hand for hostess or reciprocal gifts.
Don’t overstay your welcome
Don’t linger or reach for another drink when your hosts are already cleaning up. Take the hint if you’re being shooed out or if the crowd is beginning to thin.
Bring two different wines
Everyone has a different palate and tasting different wines side by side adds a conversational element to any dinner party. Gifting two different varietals will satisfy tastes and evoke dialogue about preferences.
A short ‘Thank You’ goes a long way
A handwritten note or a phone call to your host shows your appreciation for the invitation, while acknowledging all their hard work. Always make your note personal, mentioning a specific aspect of the party that you particularly enjoyed.