Party in Five: Mediterranean Dinner Party

We here at Cooking Channel love a good party. But throwing a memorable event requires more than just gathering some food and drinks. We show you how, with just five main “ingredients” (including recipes, big-impact decorating ideas and easy DIY elements), you can throw a party that feels like it has a cohesive theme — minimal work required.

During the summer, it can be a challenge to find interesting alternatives to the typical backyard dinner party. Next time you find yourself playing hostess, take inspiration from the ultimate sunny getaway — Greece. The bright white houses and azure seas of romantic coastal towns easily inspire blue, white and natural-hued decor, but just the same as it is in Greece, the food is really the star. A menu filled with salty olives and cheese, warm bread and herbed meat will transport guests to the Mediterranean (and if you're lucky, you might just catch a pink-hued sunset).

To host your own Mediterranean-inspired dinner party, you’ll need five essential ingredients:

• ouzo cocktails
• lemons
• hand-painted table runner
• marinated olive favors ( download the jar label templates here)
• Greek meze

Click here to see the full party and get the recipes and tips for hosting your own Mediterranean dinner party.

Spotlight on: The Menu

Greet guests at the door with Ouzo Lemon Spritzers, which pair the iconic anise-flavored liquor with refreshing citrus and mint. Set out Greek meze — pita, feta cheese, dates, honey, olives, roasted red peppers and almonds — to kick-start everyone’s appetite. Placed in individual glass bowls, these colorful bites serve as beautiful (and tasty) decor. For the main course, serve hot-off-the-grill kebabs with a light side of orzo salad with feta. Finally, pass around a Mediterranean dessert that doubles as a zesty palate cleanser: lemon sorbet.

For tips on making these DIY table runners and assembling the marinated olive jar favors, click here.

(See more parties and events from the Party in Five series here.)

Camille Styles is the founder and editor of the lifestyle blog camillestyles.com, where she shares creative enterta ining ideas for parties and everyday life. She also owns Camille Styles Events, a design and planning firm that transforms ordinary events into extraordinary experiences.

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