Sure, you can dust off that red and white checkered tablecloth and throw some patties on the barbie and host a swell barbecue with your nearest and dearest — but if you want your backyard fete to be really memorable, you might want to up your hostessing game.
From a colourful tablescape to extras that'll keep your invitees happy (and totally jealous of your entertaining skills), these 15 essentials will ensure your barbecue is fun, picture-perfect and satisfies your guests in every way.
1. Colourful dishes
Inject a dose of summer into your tablescape with dishware that boasts a colourful design. We love plates in a sophisticated print like botanical, which won't have guests thinking they're at the kids' table.
2. Colourful glassware
With dishes so bold, your glassware's going to have to step up from the crystal-clear variety t match. Choosing glasses that feature a hint of a colour in a complimentary share is a chic way to lend the table an extra pop of colour.
3. Bold table linens
Save the muted tones for indoors and pair your look-at-me dishes with placemats or a tablecloth in a juicy-bright hue.
4. Serving essentials
Stock up on serveware essentials including tongs for the burgers and ‘dogs, spoons for the side dishes, and paddles for the salad. Wooden salad servers are a classic choice.
5. Comfortable extras
Ensure your seating is extra comfortable while adding some style to your outdoor space with throw pillows. Choose ones in a vibrant print or go for ones in a softer shade that matches a colour in the tablescape design.
6. Help bringing inside essentials outside
From condiments to dishes, there are plenty of items that need to be brought outside and back in after the meal. Cut down on the number of trips you make by investing in a tray, which can also become part of your tablescape.
7. Must-have tools for the barbecue
To ensure the burgs, ‘dogs and whatever else you're grilling are cooked to perfection, you're going to need the right tools on-hand. Look for a BBQ tool set that has special features — this one boasts a slotted turner that's been designed to help you easily lift and adjust the meat and oval slots that allow for drainage.
8. Snack station
A griller must not be rushed — you know that! Ensure your guests don't get hangry (and put pressure on the chef) by having snacks and apps spread out around the backyard near each seating area. For an easy option, go for a trio of easy dips — Sabra hummus, our Dill-icious Dip, and our All-in-One Nacho Cheese Dip, and serve with veggies, chips and crackers.
9. Pitcher for your signature cocktail
Whisk up a batch of your favourite cocktail, like our Red and White Summer Sangria or our Maple Whisky Lemonade, and have a pitcher of it on the table so you can grill and mingle and don't have to tend to your guests' empty glasses.
10. Tablescape styling
Make your table magazine-worthy by scattering small bud vases across it. Fill each one with just a single stem from your garden for a thriftier alternative to a large flower arrangement.
Add warmth to the tablescape or surrounding area with tea lights. Choose glass holders that can be hung off a tree or placed on the table for an extra dose of style.
12. More ambiance for when the back continues well after dark
If you're expecting your party to continue into the night (and why shouldn't it?) consider adding string lights across your space. A string or two strung diagonally across the table should do the trick.
13. Chic bug repellent
Bugs are a party buzz-kill. Make sure pestering mosquitos don't scare away guests by being prepared with a repellent — and we're not talking about that stinky, sticky spray. Opt for a chic candle made with ingredients that stave off creepy crawlers. This one masks odours that typically attract insects while keeping your space smelling lovely.
14. To get people into the pool
Unless there are little kids around, no one ever seems to want to be the first in the water. Lure guests in with floaties that are begging to be used (and 'grammed).
15. A game centre
A little competition can bring on the laughs and gets guests to loosen up and mingle. Croquet is that game everyone loves to play on a hot summer day, and the set is a backyard essential you'll have forever.
Instead of fussing over the apps when you could be mingling with your guests, opt for an easy, foolprook snack option such as a simple crudité platter. Pick up some veggies and Sabra Hummus Dip from your local grocery, transfer to a platter and serve. Learn about Sabra's delicious hummus flavours at Sabra.com.