Celebrations and delicious food often go hand in hand, regardless of age, culture, location or time of year. Many people celebrate specific feast days such as Christmas, Diwali, Día de los Muertos and even Burns’ Night with traditional dishes, ranging from snacks to drinks to full meals.
However, culturally significant days aren’t the only ones worth celebrating. Personal triumphs and special occasions call for a tasty celebration too. Whether that means splashing out on a slightly more expensive bottle of wine, or treating your loved one to a slap-up meal at their favourite restaurant, food is the perfect way to mark the occasion.
But what happens when you’re all out of ideas? Never fear – here we’ve put together a quick guide containing plenty of suggestions to get you started.
A Cosy Night In with Friends
Although a night out at a fancy restaurant is always enjoyable, sometimes it’s best to gather people together in our own homes. It’s more affordable, often more convenient, and it can engender a sense of intimacy that isn’t always accessible in a formal setting.
There are plenty of ways to celebrate at home, ranging from a fun and competitive games night, to watching the latest blockbuster movie together, to simply gathering around the table and enjoying a home-cooked meal. Luckily, the internet now provides plenty of quick and easy solutions to common hosting headaches.
Naturally, services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu have completely changed the way in which we access tv and film content at home. Simply select a film that you’re all interested in from the thousands of choices available, then log in, press play and settle back to enjoy. Fortunately, accessing games from home is now just as simple. Platforms like Poker Stars and Steam let you play everything from classics like roulette and blackjack, to newer titles like Among Us and Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds.
The internet comes to the rescue when you need to feed everyone too. Subscription services like Hello Fresh take care of the menu, providing ingredients and instructions straight to your door. You can then rustle up something supremely tasty with very little effort. Alternatively, you could give yourself a night off and use an online food delivery company like DoorDash or Deliveroo to indulge in any type of cuisine you fancy.
A Failproof Date Night
It’s all very well and good having a bunch of friends over for a party, but what happens when you want to treat your significant other? This calls for something a bit more considered and thoughtful. You might want to woo your better half for Valentine’s Day, an anniversary or even for the ultimate date night – a marriage proposal! Whatever the special occasion, it’s best to go for something a little more significant than your usual local chain restaurant.
Of course, you could fall back on the classic idea of a home cooked meal, but if you’re anxious enough already about getting it right, then you don’t want to introduce even more variables. Best to let a professional take care of the menu by booking a table for two somewhere well-known for its great service and even better food. Whereas takeaways, finger food and buffet style treats might go down well for games night, the easiest way to make a date night feel extra memorable is to introduce a touch of class.
If you’ve been together for a while, then it’s highly likely that you know best which foods your partner enjoys. This means that you’re ideally placed to pick the perfect restaurant. If they’re into seafood, why not travel to the nearest coast and treat them to freshly caught fare? Or if their true culinary love is all kinds of spicy food, why not try out a curry house? Alternatively, if they follow a particular diet like vegan or vegetarian, you can look for somewhere making creative and exciting dishes within this specific field. An outstanding meal can really set the tone for the evening.
Getting the Gang Back Together
There are moments in life when we deliberately reflect back on what has come before and reconnect with the people and the memories from a particular time in our past. This can happen in the form of reunions amongst college buddies, sports teams, colleagues from previous workplaces and even just groups of friends that don’t meet up that often anymore. It’s always nice to see people, but the problem often lies in where you should all gather. It can be tricky to book an extra-large table in a nice restaurant, and this option doesn’t always leave enough freedom for everyone to work their way around the group.
An alternative, and perhaps more suitable, option is to meet somewhere casual and relaxed, like a sports bar, outdoor patio, street food festival or local food hall. The pick-and-choose nature of these places is perfect for large groups, as there is something for everyone’s taste. It also makes it easier for people who can only drop in for a brief chat and a snack before they need to be on their way. Once everyone has a plate and a drink in front of them, the conversation will start to flow and it’ll be like old times all over again.