Despite those back to school ads, summer is not over yet!  One of the best ways to enjoy the summer is to entertain outside.  You can transform your backyard or patio by bringing the indoors outside, and your guests will love the creature comforts of home while enjoying those dog days of summer.

Have a dinner party al fresco.  Use a large dining table (folding or the real thing) as your focal point and bring out the very best linens, quilts, or other large remnants of pretty fabric.  Next, bring out the dining room chairs, upholstered benches, and any comfortable, attractive arm chairs you have hiding inside. Then add your fine china, best silverware and crystal.  Bring the finest and most favorite items outside, and you will transform your venue!

Set the table with hydrangeas that are perfect right now, and add votive candles all the way down the table – as many as you can fit!  Make sure to add a few soft throws on the arms of the chairs in case a cool breeze comes in during these last nights of August.

Now that you’ve set this beautiful scene, it’s time to serve an equally elegant meal:  Start with Floribunda’s Half & Half’s (find the recipe in one of our prior posts), along with Potato Chips with Creme Fraiche and Salmon Caviar.  A Spinach Salad loaded with bacon and mushrooms, Roasted Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes, Gruyere Scalloped Potatoes and Beef Tenderloin will be a scrumptious dinner served with lovely Cabernet Sauvignon or Rioja.    A Classic Cheesecake with Summer Berries will top off the perfect al fresco night.   Enjoy these last days of summer!