Next-Level Summer Hosting

by Sophia Young


Stunning tablescapes, delicious dishes and sparkling drink pairings that are sure to impress

No matter the heat or humidity, we’re all ready to host, hug and perhaps be a wee bit hungover. After what seemed like a lifetime apart, hosting has never felt so good. From festive ambience, savory dishes and even a few boozy popsicles, Michelin- starred chef Adam Howard, the new toque at Susan Gage Caterers, along with his team, offers some of the season’s most creative hosting tips. >>



  • Bring indoors outside. Create a living room style atmosphere in your backyard with comfortable and cozy lounge furniture, summer florals or an accent bar. Turn on the outdoor chandelier for a wow factor.
  • Glamp it up. Transform your backyard into an inviting and luxurious glamping dinner party. Add a tent or a yurt and then encourage guests to mingle by setting up chairs and/or sofas around each other. Pillows and blankets provide a pop of color and texture.
  • Make it glow. You might not see stars in the sky, but candles, string lights and lanterns add warmth and radiance. Try hanging Edison bulb/bistro style lighting between trees.
  • Combine grains. Mix bulgur or farro then add color with heirloom tomatoes along with other green veggies.
  • Keep it light. Salads with corn or cucumber as a base are always a hit. Toss cucumbers, feta and arugula with a light honey vinaigrette. Bonus: blueberries add a burst of sweet flavor and vivid color.
  • Add mint. With its divine aroma and clean taste, mint is the perfect touch to any savory dish.


  • Update a classic: Present variations of the classic British cocktail, the Pimm’s Cup, with flavors like strawberry or sparkling rose.
  • Freeze for fun: DIY boozy popsicles at home is a kid- like surprise for adult guests, particularly when it’s a sultry 88 degrees at sundown.
  • Elevate the nostalgia: Fancy up your s’mores with Grand Marnier and maple-bacon flavored homemade marshmallow to pair with caramel sauce and graham crackers.


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