This One Inspired TikTok Tip Will Make Your Dinner Parties Even More Magical
If your TikTok algorithm looks anything like mine, you’re likely dreaming of dinner parties. Eclectic tablescapes, vintage champagne flutes, and slow pans of lingering conversation in the golden hour just before twilight continually pop up in my feed and they’re just so bewitching. The thing is, all social media is filtered through some level of curation, and as lovely as these twinkle-lit feasts look, I can’t help but think they seem like a lot of work. As a chronically late person, one of my worries when hosting people is that things won’t be ready at the right time. The pizza dough will still be raw when everyone arrives, or the guacamole will have browned to a moldy brown-green color — there is no in between.
But then, in the midst of my scrolling, I happened upon a video that answered all my timing woes with one simple answer: Set up a DIY cocktail station. TikTok creator @hanselkai regularly posts about the lovely monthly dinner parties she throws, including tips on how she makes them fun, simple, and not stressful. One of those tips is to bridge that awkward gap between when guests arrive and when the food is completely ready by setting up a drink station complete with a recipe card for the signature cocktail of the night.
“Here’s one of my favorite tips for being able to focus on the food and entertain your guests at the same time,” she says in the video voice over. “I make a house cocktail that my friends can build together. So I make them this little ingredient list and then I set up a little bar… that way I can finish up any cooking and they can make themselves a little drink.”
She sets the example with a simple French 75, which calls for gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, and champagne to top it off. But this hack is completely customizable to your preference — opt for a delicious zero-proof mocktail, a classic martini, or have your friends craft their own drink of the summer. The drink station idea (or even just the concept of having guests mix up their drinks while you finish up food) also avoids them asking if there’s anything they can help with and the tasks of having to find something for them to do.
The day after seeing this house cocktail tip, I had my friend over for dinner and decided to take it for a spin. I didn’t have the foresight or craft supplies to make a cute recipe card, but while I waited for the veggies I was roasting to crisp up, I asked her to visit my bar cart. She took out a Maine blueberry syrup mixer she had gifted me and by the time dinner was served she had poured two yummy blueberry vodka cocktails, giving us both something to cheers to.