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How to Host a Grown-Up Family Style Dinner for 4th of July

Step away from the red solo cups.

How to Host a Grown-Up Family Style Dinner for 4th of July
You guys! It’s the Fourth of July! Arguably the best holiday of the year, the Fourth revolves around three of our favorite things; drinking, fireworks, and food. If you, like us, plan on pigging the eff out this weekend, we’ve got you covered with the second installment of our series with Monique Otero of Brunchpants, and Myka Meier of Beaumont Etiquette.

In our opinion, there are two appropriate dining options on the Fourth of July: stuffing your face with charred-to-perfection hot dogs and beer, or an elegant family-style meal for your nearest and dearest. Should you choose the first option, godspeed, but don’t forget the Pepto. If you’re of the Pinterest persuasion, below is the ultimate guide for what to make, how to act, and how to decorate your table for a lovely, very grown-up dinner.

“Dress up traditional picnic items for this summery family style meal. Serve everything ‘temperatura ambiente’ (Italian for room temperature),” says Otero, “except for the pies and ice cream of course!” Look for decorative elements in blue and yellow, and lay petals or leaves underneath clear glass plates, between two layers. “Find interesting graphic paper like this blue and white block print to use as a runner,” says Otero. “Also, mix and match china for a casual vibe, and use tumblers that look like crystal, but are actually acrylic, like these Milly Tumblers by Mario Luca Giusti.” Broken glass at a party = ultimate downer.



“For a casual family style meal, set a table as if it is for one main course, with a main dining fork and knife. Don’t set it for multiple courses, although you may be enjoying many dishes throughout the meal!”

“All food platters should be placed in the middle of the table for sharing access. Remember plates are always passed to the right when sharing to avoid traffic jams around the table.”

“The salt and pepper shakers are always passed together in a pair.”


Watermelon sangria

Charred broccollini salad with escarole, feta and chili

Mini-lobster Rolls

Grilled summer corn salad

Heirloom tomato panzanella

Grilled chimichurri chicken topped with chive flowers

Blueberry pie with vanilla cardamom ice cream

Strawberry rhubarb pie with mint basil ice cream


Grilled Summer Corn Salad | Serves 6


6 ears of corn
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
1 cup of yellow grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/2 cup thinly sliced watermelon radish
2 tsp. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice


1. Preheat your grill for medium heat and lightly oil the grates.

2. Grill the corn, occasionally turning until the corn is tender and with some black specks (this will take about 8-10 minutes).

3. Set corn aside to cool.

4. In a large bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients.

5. Once cooled, slice the kernels off the cob and add to the bowl.

6. Mix everything together and season with salt and pepper.

Creative Direction and Photography: Monique Otero@brunchpants

Etiquette:  Myka Meier@mykameier

Tableware sourced from Jung Lee NY@jungleeny

Photo studio - BFA Studios@BFA

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