Tara Guérard and her team at Soirée certainly know how to throw a party. After all, they are responsible for some very stylish parties and weddings, events that have been breathlessly covered by blogs and magazines far and wide. With offices in Charleston and New York as well as a stationery line called The Lettered Olive, Tara and Soirée are who many a stylish gal has turned to plan their own royal weddings. Make that royal looking weddings.
I thought it might be fun to have Tara help me organize a Peak of Chic Party. Well, not a real one, but rather a pretend, "what might be" party. I see it taking place outdoors with shelter provided by a tent- a fanciful tent, of course. And I would probably go old-school with the music and hire Liquid Pleasure. Their tag line is "The more you drink, the better we sound", but I've heard them sober and not completely sober and they always sound good. And speaking of drink, I would serve all of the usual suspects plus something fun like Gin Fizzes.
The food? Tara came up with a menu that really makes me want to take this party from the virtual world to the real world.
TAPAS PRESENTED ON TIERED GRAZING BUFFETS
Crepes of Duck Confit
Cipollini onions, garlic, ginger, cherry reduction
Ahi Tuna Tartare
House made sesame oil, edible wonton “spoons,” lotus roots
Sweet pickle-egg mousse, pencil asparagus tips
Bamboo Skewers of Local Creek Shrimp
Toasted hazelnuts, Grand Marnier aioli
Grilled beef tenderloin, tarragon pesto, arugula, heirloom tomatoes, Old Amsterdam cheese
Cornbread Encrusted Pork Tenderloin
Chopstick skewers, caramelized Granny Smith apples, Saigon cinnamon, cherry chutney
The Composed Cheese Course
Artisan cheeses and accompaniments
White cake with butter cream and chocolate cake with vanilla icing
She also came up with another menu option for me:
ALFRESCO CHEF’S TABLE FOR FIVE
Petit Black Angus Filet Mignon and Risotto “Pears”
Wild mushrooms, English peas, roasted shallot-Marsala demi-glace
And just to make sure that my party goes smoothly, Tara gave me the following suggestions:
1. Print or create cute signs for passed appetizers & the cheese cart. Invest a little in custom printed napkins styled to match the invitation - guests always appreciate the details!
2. Make sure napkins can't blow off tables at outside events by wrapping pretty ribbon ties around napkin bundles.
3. Using lots of one decor item makes a big impact! Example here is using lots of glass cylinders, pillars and orchids throughout the party.
4. Comfortable lounge seating areas make parties more fun, cozy and intimate. Then no one wants to go home!
Sounds doable to me. So, who's ready to party?
Menu and tips courtesy of Tara Guérard; photographs by Adrienne Page Photography.