The Dinner Party Series: Spring With Kitty’s Kitchen’s Kitty Williams – The Secret to the PERFECT Dinner Party & Her Best-Ever Easy Recipes 

So much of life’s best memories are shared around the dinner table, and no matter what season it is, it’s always a great time to gather your favourite people, share some good food and great wine, and spend some quality time. 
But everyone’s dream dinner party looks a little different, so we’ve gone to some of our favourite people to ask just what they’d be serving up at their ideal evening soiree, as well as all the little, juicy details of who’d make the guest list, what’s on the playlist and what’s on the table itself! 
This month we chat to Kitty Williams, the woman behind the ‘just a little bit naughty’ Instagram food account @kittyskitchen and her new cookbook Kitty’s Kitchen: Just a Little Bit Naughty about her dream table (and click here to see our previous instalments with Kanoa Lloyd and Jess Molina!

Proudly brought to you by our pals at Villa Maria

What is your secret to throwing a fun but non-stressful dinner party?
Meal prep! The more meal prep you can do the more seamless the dinner party will be. I like to be able to converse with my guests when they arrive and not be slaving away in the kitchen.

What is the best dinner party you’ve ever been to and why?
The most recent one was at my friend’s house on a hot summer’s day. A group of us went around to her house to swim and have margaritas by the pool then we had home-made pizzas for dinner. It was absolutely perfect! 

What is the most memorable dinner party you’ve ever thrown? 
This wasn’t a party that I threw, it was one thrown for me by my grandmother Ouma on my 18th birthday. She cooked my favourite childhood dishes including veal parmigiana and lemon posset for dessert. What made it so memorable was she suddenly died two weeks later-  it was the last family meal she cooked. 

What is your go-to meal to cook?
If I’m having people over for dinner I like to keep it simple yet delicious. My go-to would have to be crispy fish tacos. You can pretty much prep all of it ahead of time and I love letting my guests build their own tacos. It’s more fun and social that way!

What is your go-to comfort wine for dinner with friends?
I absolutely love a pinot gris.. but if it’s a warm evening then I tend to go for a rose. My stepdad’s French family drink chilled rosé in summer which is delicious.

Do you have any particular chefs/cooks/cookbooks/cuisines you would 100% trust to make a meal from for a dinner party?
I absolutely love Tieghan Gerard (@halfbakedharvest). She inspires me so much! In terms of cuisine I like Mexican, Italian and Japanese. They would be my top three faves.

What topics do you love to talk about at a dinner party? 
Many topics are covered but most of the people I dine with are massive foodies like me so we often end up talking about what we are eating!

What’s your favourite food and wine pairing for a dinner party?
Actually, I love focusing on pre-dinner cocktails and guests can drink whatever wine preferences they have with the meal.

What’s your menu? 
Tonight I am serving my “Fall In Love Chicken” (creamy Tuscan chicken) with garlic bread to mop up the sauce and some seasonal greens. For dessert I have my white chocolate strawberry cheesecake. Check out my Instagram for the recipes! 

What’s your tablescape theme? 
I’m going for more of a rustic vibe.. every guest has a large white plate in front of them with a coloured napkin tied beautifully laying on top of it and draping over the edge (shades of oranges and pinks). Flowers running down the centre of the table as well as lit candles to create a warm intimate feeling.

If you could hire a celeb chef for the night, who’s cooking for you?
I am going to have to be greedy here.. I would love both Nigella Lawson and Gordon Ramsay. Iconic!!

How about the playlist – who is on the playlist? 
I usually play music that fits the theme. If I’m whipping up Italian food then Italian music it is! It almost makes you feel like you’re in the country.

If you can impart one piece of advice for hosting a dinner party, what is it? 
Don’t set yourself up with 100 jobs to do. Keep it light and simple and have fun with it!

Tasting notes from Villa Maria’s Kathrin Jankowiec: This year it is all about the pink vibes and Rosé is fitting the Barbie trend perfectly. Rosé recently experienced a real renaissance as winemakers rolled up their sleeves to produce complex wines with lots of depth that attract wine lovers from all walks of life. Styles of Rosé differ, but most often you find fruit forward wines that finish dry which makes these wines a perfect companion with a wide range of food. I enjoy a Pinot Noir Rosé as a refreshing drink on its own on a warm Spring day,  while our Merlot-based EarthGarden Organic Rosé is a plush wine that will be a great match to any alfresco dining. Top tip: try a Rosé with a seared or baked salmon dish. Delicious!

Table styling by Holly Page at Lay Me Down, photographs by Robert Trathen

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