entertaining · indulging

Early Summer Dinner Group

Early summer dinner group

Enjoying the company of good friends and sharing a pot-luck, home-cooked meal with our dinner group is the ultimate in frugal, fancy, and fun entertaining. I always look forward to these regular, neighborhood gatherings. It’s especially nice when it’s an early summer dinner group get together and we can sit outside, even if it’s only for appetizers.

The evening began with a light and refreshing signature drink.

Dinner group

Our dinner group, which consists of four couples and no kids, meets every other month – or so. Sometimes coordinating schedules gets tricky and we have to skip a month but it’s always an evening to look forward to.

The hosting couple chooses the menu for the evening and serves the entrée. The other couples get assigned appetizer, salad or dessert. At this dinner group gathering, the hosting couple said the menu was, “Italian-ish/French-ish so they served lamb with…

Dinner group lamb

lentils (loosely following this recipe, by David Lebovitz) and it was delicious.

Supper club entertaining

This time, our contribution was the appetizer. We brought white bean dip with anchovies and arugula.

Dinner group

Are you noticing all of the guys wore gingham dress shirts? They supposedly did not call each other first but there was a definite “gingham” theme going on this night.

Dinner group
Gingham dress shirts were worn by almost all the guys – “gingham guys” is what I say!

Well, everyone got the memo about wearing a gingham dress shirt except my neighbor, Kenton. We made him carry the wine outside as a result of his not wearing the proper attire. We eventually forgave him.

Dinner group
Kenton didn’t get the memo on the gingham dress shirts and his punishment was to carry the wine bottles around. Poor Kenton.

My friend, Robin, and her husband brought the salad. It was fresh and fruity.

Fresh salad at dinner group

The table looked really pretty.

Pretty table setting

The always anticipated dessert. It was a flourless chocolate cake infused with lavender. I love how it looks on this plate, too. The lavender was fresh from the garden.

Dinner group

Dinner group is at house our next time. Cross your fingers that it will still be warm enough to dine outside!

Are you in a dinner group that meets regularly? Do you want to start one?

Go Gingham related links:

How to organize a dinner group – why not start one? It’s frugal, fancy & fun!
Last summer’s dinner group gather is here and the appetizer we brought is here
Our dinner group followed Bon Appetit’s menu last fall
The last time we hosted diner group – in between decorating seasons
Dinner group in spring – well, it felt like winter
The appetizer – white bean dip – brought for dinner group

7 thoughts on “Early Summer Dinner Group

    1. Well, the roving group means you don’t always have to have your house cleaned up! It’s been very fun to switch it up and we all live within walking distance of one another – or biking. It is a great way to try out new recipes and enjoy my neighbors’ cooking. Thanks, Heidi.


  1. I want to start one too, Sara! I have had this in other places I have lived and it is always fun! Maybe I will get it going this Fall. It would be a great way to stay in touch with friends. Now that our kids are getting bigger, we don’t have as many school functions where we would see each other. Thanks!


    1. Annie, we love it. It’s hard to get schedules worked out sometimes but we eventually do and I’m always glad. We’re hosting this weekend and having a clam bake and a fire in the backyard. Should be nice weather, too. Let me know how it goes organizing one. Thanks, Annie!


  2. I’d love the cake recipe (a link to it is fine). I have lavendar that I’m looking for uses for!!

    We sort of do this me, and two couples, all live a few blocks from one another (plus there are other locals, but the 5 of us make the ‘normal’ gang). We usually eat at one couple’s place on Sunday nights (the boys start at the pub earlier on!) – but the last three weeks, it’s been roving. IT’s nice to look forward to Sundays, I can’t remember the last time I had Sunday night blues!!


    1. Sarah, the recipe is elusive! My neighbor didn’t have the link and I’ve been searching for it with no luck. Search engines aren’t being my friend. I will continue to research otherwise I’ll just have to make one up myself! It was quite good. You can always cut and dry your lavender by hanging upside down and make sachets. That’s what I’m doing with mine right now. I’m trying to keep pesky moths away 🙂


  3. Love, love, love this idea, Sara! Your dinners look so civilized, and yes, definitely fancy. How cool that it is also frugal, and what a great way to connect with friends — and have some adult conversation?


Comments are closed.