entertaining · indulging

Our Gourmet Supper Club

Gourmet supper club
In our dinner group or gourmet supper club, our 8-members share in the work, the expense of entertaining, and we get to socialize regularly. This happens while we are enjoying good food and good friends. But I have a complaint about it.

Dinner group recipes
Dinner group recipes usually come from Bon Appetit – no complaints from me about that!

My big complaint? The word “potluck.” That word has connotations of bag of chips and salsa and bland dishes that one’s family won’t eat. It’s too bad that word has such a bad reputation. Even though our dinner group is gourmet eating and we’re sharing the work of preparing different parts of the meal and we’re eating gourmet dishes, it’s really a “potluck.”

Dinner group
How do we coordinate our “potluck” dinner group?

  • The host chooses the theme or picks the recipes. It’s usually something special and not what would be for every day dining.
  • The other members in the diner group each contribute their part. We take turns bringing appetizers, salad, and dessert.
  • Everyone brings something to drink.

Potluck dinner group

Gourmet Supper Club

The menu from our last gathering was:

  • appetizer: goat cheese, caramelized onions, and roasted red peppers with crostini (that’s what we brought)
  • main: braised chicken with capers and parsley from Bon Appetit (that’s what the hosts served)
  • salad: radicchio salad with dressing (that’s what my friend, Robin, and her husband brought)
  • side: forked oven roasted potatoes from Bon Appetit (the hosts served this, also)
  • dessert: apple galette from Bon Appetit (that’s what the 4th couple brought)

These apples were sliced by hand. I would have needed a mandolin to get them so even.

Dinner Group Dessert
The salad was radicchio and was delicious.

Salad for dinner group
By sharing the responsibility and rotating homes, we end up socializing with our good friends and enjoying delicious meals. Not one person or household has to do all the work or have all the expense of entertaining. Dinner group is very frugal, fancy, and fun. After many years of getting together with our friends, I always look forward to it. I can’t wait until our next get together.

Do you enjoy potluck dining with friends? Are you in a dinner group?

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

9 thoughts on “Our Gourmet Supper Club

    1. Lili,
      We have a great time! My only other complaint is that we don’t do it often enough. Scheduling gets tricky but our next one is soon. Are you in a dinner group?


      1. Hi Sara,
        Not an all adult dinner group, but we have a couple of families that we get together with regularly, and share a meal, kids included.

        The hostess chooses the menu, then the rest of us consult with her about what we can bring. These friends are our family away from family. We spend holiday meals together, have soup luncheons after church together, and enjoy backyard bbqs in summer together. So, a little different from your dinner group. With kids, perhaps not all that gourmet either (jello salad was on the menu the last time around, LOL, and it was good).

        Also, with such a large group, sitting at one table is not always possible. We’ve fit 13 in our dining room before (two tables pushed together, and tablecloths overlapping). But when there’s 22 of us, we dine buffet-style, and eat off our laps.


  1. What a wonderful way to share a delicious meal and an evening of company with people who share your interest in good food! I’ve never heard of a gourmet potluck club, but I’d sign up for one in a heartbeat… so long as there was a rule banning Jello, anything slathered in mayonnaise, and Cool Whip. Those three things remind me of every horrible potluck I went to as a kid. Ew.


    1. Katie, that’s what I’m talkin’ about when it comes to the word “potluck.” It reminds people of molded salads and mayonnaise based or fake foods. We have none of that. It’s usually better than a restaurant and costs less money! Plus, we can almost always walk, too. Thanks, Katie! You should organize one – you’d love it!


  2. A friend of mine hosts something similar. Each month she picks an ingredient and we all bring a dish featuring that ingredient. It’s great. At first we all wondered if we would end up bringing the same dish, but that hasn’t happened yet. I think because we all try to think of something outside the norm so we avoid replicating. Also, because she tries to pick items that are in season, it can be pretty frugal since you can make as simple or extensive a dish as you want.

    In the past we have done cocoa, avocado, root vegetables, curry, squash, greens, nuts, coconut, apple, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, and more that I can’t recall off the top of my head. We have a lot of diverse dietary needs – gluten free, vegan, paleo, low sugar, etc. and since everyone makes sure that the one dish they bring is something they can eat, there is never a worry about people going hungry – and most of the time there are 3 to 4 dishes that each person could eat out of the array.


    1. Cee, I love this idea! It’s great that your friend is using (and suggesting you use) what’s in season, too. I’m sure you leave with lots of good ideas and inspiration. Sometimes being forced to cook outside of our “norm” is good. That’s another thing I like about dinner group is that I have to try a new recipe or make something I otherwise wouldn’t. Thanks for sharing!


  3. I miss my old supper club. In our group the host picked the theme and would sort of allude to the main dish. But we did not pick recipes for others. It was all a surprise when we got there.


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