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Episode 204 - La Dolce Vita
Italian Peasant Table
Nik sets up
Entertaining along a multi cultural theme neednít be expensive or formal. How about a casual Italian table instead of an ornate service? Our table in La Dolce Vita used beautiful, bright coloured items available pretty well anywhere.

We began by covering the table with woven runners instead of table cloths. The China is traditional Sicilian fare, hand-painted, beautifully glazed clay. Side plates are for big chunks of Italian bread and olive oil, the deep bowls perfect for big helpings of hearty soups. Napkins are vibrant, maybe a bright yellow. Cutlery is from your own everyday collection.

The glassware is where we stray from the norm; tall and slender for wine, squat and almost square for sparkling water.

Table accessories are very simple. How about wicker-covered Chianti bottles coated with wax drippings? Only use one colour candle to give it an entertaining update. You can get a head start by dripping another, similarly coloured candle around the neck of a new bottle.

We anchored each end of our service table with large basil plants; pots, soil and all. Groupings of smaller plants like Rosemary, Sage and Tarragon also give off a stimulating aroma.

Each of these details can be applied to entertaining along any multi cultural theme. It just makes dining more of an adventure!