Don’t overthink it: A single grocery run is all it takes to prep for a super-elegant bash. Introducing Lulu’s three P’s: Parmesan, potato chips, and prosecco.
I always tell people, you don’t have to cook to entertain. The most fabulous party I have ever been to was in Venice, and all the host served was Parmesan, potato chips, and prosecco. It was such a genius idea, I had to re-create it. Whether you’re just having a few friends over for a holiday drink or throwing a big New Year’s Eve party, all you really need are the three P’s.
When I serve this, I like to crumble up pieces of the cheese and leave the rest of it intact — a big block of Parmesan makes a statement, after all! Put the chips (my favorite kind is Luke’s Organic) in small bowls or shallow juice glasses. Not only is it a more stylish presentation, it also keeps guests from running back to the chip bowl all night. Zonin is my go-to brand of prosecco.
The three P’s are chic on their own, but if you want to dress them up, there are endless ways to do so. Put out truffle honey or red-pepper jam with the cheese. Place store-bought breadsticks in a glass vase. Cut up some fresh herbs, like dill or rosemary, and sprinkle them over the chips. Olives and dried apricots go beautifully with the Parmesan. For something sweet, break up chocolate bars and put them in a bowl.
You can add accoutrements to the prosecco, too. Freeze grapes, cranberries, or even gummy bears and toss them in for a fun twist. Mix in edible glitter for some glamour.
And don’t overlook the basics! A well-placed vase of tulips and lots of candles can turn a casual night into a memorable event.
Lulu Powers, aka "The Entertainologist," is the design world's go-to caterer and author of . Follow her on Instagram .
Wallpaper by Fromental. Triple bowl by Ralph Lauren Home. Flutes by William Yeoward Crystal. Table by Pottery Barn.
This story originally appeared in the December/January 2018 issue of CQ.