Diner en Blanc Brisbane 2014

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I’m back! It’s been 4 weeks since my last blog post. Where has time gone?!  So much has happened and I have quite literally been on the verge of a mental breakdown. Why? Well Honours has been consuming my life and don’t even get me started about my thesis. That thing nearly killed me.  Never have I been so stressed in my entire life.

During thesis hell, I’ve been keeping a list of all the things I need to post on sarahsavours.  I’ve really missed my blogging. Let’s face it, academics don’t want to read a paragraph on French cheese nor do they want to know how that Nicoise salad was made. So this afternoon will kick off that list by re-capping Diner en Blanc 2014. Now this event has become pretty darn special to me. Not only did I base my whole thesis around it but I have met some of the greatest people by being involved for 2 years now. I love it very much and it’s become such a huge part of my life. These days, tere really isn’t a time when I’m not thinking about some element of it.

So if you are still with me out there, read on and I’ll tell you a bit more about it.

Diner en Blanc is not your average dinner party. I think that’s part of the reason why I love it. It’s spontaneous, magical, elegant, quirky, and just that little bit fancy. Everything you want in a food event. What is it all about you say? First let’s take a little history lesson. In 1988, François Pasquier held a dinner in Paris to reconnect with friends. He asked his dining pals to convene at the Bois de Boulogne, dressed in white so they could all find each other in the Parisian outskirts. Each year, the word-of-mouth dinner grew, with up to 20,000 white-clad guests now meeting annually in Paris’ public spaces. This annual gastronomic affair has since spread worldwide, popping up in almost 40 cities across the globe.

Dressed head-to-toe in white and converging on a surprise location, Brisbane said bonjour to the third annual pop-up picnic Diner en Blanc on Saturday, October 11. In 2013, the secret soiree saw over 2000 picnic-goers gallivanting under the stars at Portside filled with delectable eats, frivolous fun and entertainment.  This year, lucky locals were treated to the scenic surrounds of Roma Street Parklands, blanketing one of the Brisbane’s most loved public spaces for another night in pristine white.

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Diner en Blanc captures a little slice of European charm. Those who manage to secure a coveted ticket are asked to dress fashionably in white and bring along a table, chairs and decorations to craft a white-hued setting.  Deciding on table decorations is so much fun. This year we went for a foodie theme and chose our decorations accordingly. With most of our items coming from the holy grail of home decor, IKEA, we opted for practical items with lace detail. Our tablecloth had scalloped edging and I made a centerpiece by painting three wooden spoons white and handwriting the words Diner en Blanc on each. Stuck inside a white lace planter turned vase, they worked a treat! Together with a food-laden platter, we had a little shelf (as every Diner en Blanc goer knows elevation on the table is key!) glass jars with flowers, rosemary and thyme, a rather large wooden fork and of course fairy lights. The extent to which people to go at this event is truly amazing to see. You have to witness it to know what I mean!

Diner en Blanc also takes attendees on a culinary journey around the world- no air travel required! Guests have the option to bring their own food or for fuss-free fare Dalton Hospitality offered a variety of themed gourmet baskets to wine and dine the night away. Clovely Estate also kept the evening flowing with a range of local wines sourced from the South Burnett region. We bought an abundance of food but is there such thing as too much? Never. Entree was antipasto, with beautiful cheeses, bread, meats, sun-dried tomatoes and heaps of other goodies we picked up at Garden City (Sidenote: Check out the new food court there it’s incredible!). For main we had an assortment of quiches with smoked salmon, ham, asparagus and cheese and paired those with a zingy potato salad and a simple garden salad. It was perfect fare for a warm Spring evening. And what would a menu be without dessert? We went for mini strawberry cheesecakes that were delightfully creamy and sweet.

Amidst a sea of sparklers, buzzing chatter, dancing, a live DJ and clinking of glasses, Diner en Blanc 2014 seriously went off without a hitch.

Want to come and join in the world’s biggest dinner party? The waiting list for Diner en Blanc 2015 is now open, head to http://brisbane.dinerenblanc.info/ and register for your chance to secure tickets. I can’t wait for next year already!

Stay hungry,

S.

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