Planning a summer barbecue or five? We’re here to help! Barbecues have been gaining popularity as the go-to celebration for all occasions, especially weddings and birthdays. With these helpful tips from Emily Post, your role as the BBQ Hostess will surely be stuff of legends.
1. Practice Makes Perfect
Texas barbecue is a serious undertaking. There are certain expectations when it comes to flavor and quality, and sub-par barbecue can make a party slide downhill pretty fast. If you plan on going above and beyond burgers and dogs, make sure you know what you’re doing. If you don’t have the time to read a BBQ Bible from cover to cover, you might want to leave it to the professionals. Most barbecue joints have catering capabilities, and placing an order is a lot less work than slaving over a smoker.
2. Be Flexible With Vegetables
You’ll probably have a few of those rare Texas vegetarians on your guest list, and that’s okay. As the perfect party hostess, you’ll want to make sure your herbivore friends have something to eat besides cole slaw and beans. Thick slices of eggplant, Portobello mushrooms and squash are all simply delicious on the grill and sure to please your meatless pals.
3. Plan, Plan, and Plan Ahead
Having a barbecue in Texas means having to deal with Texas weather. Once summer hits, it’s usually just a long stretch of painfully hot days with no relief until dang near Christmas. However, thunderstorms often show up uninvited with zero notice (how rude!) and can ruin your outdoor festivities. Do yourself a favor and run the vacuum through the living room in case you need to move the party inside. Preparing everything the day before is also a great way to make sure everything goes smoothly. After all, it’s hard to be a good hostess if you’re shucking corn as people arrive. (That’s what kids are for!)
4. Keep Calm and Smile On
If your cousin shows up with her loudmouth roommate or your new café lights come unstapled and tumble off the roof, it’s okay. We promise. Nobody will remember if you duct tape the lights to the gutter with a laugh, but they will remember if you start sobbing on top of a ladder holding a staple gun. The best way to win Hostess of the Year is to relax and enjoy all your hard work.
5. Keep Guests Talking
This is one of those hostess tips that people don’t really think about. Summer barbecues are typically casual, but they’re still a social gathering. Odds are that one or more of your friends or family members are a tad bit shy. Keep an eye out for the lonely hearts and pair them up with someone you trust to be kind and friendly. If you know you’ll have some guests who prefer to observe, have things like books or games with which they can occupy their time.
Speaking of happy guests, don’t forget the party favors! SampleHouse has a huge supply of gift bags ready to stuffed with all kinds of goodies. A bottle of NW Elixir barbecue sauce or marinade is the perfect party favor for your proper summer barbecue. Happy barbecuing!