Savor the warmth of early fall with an outdoor feast inspired by Mediterranean culture. Serving small dishes known as meze is a delicious alternative to a traditional main course.
Dining on meze is a time-honored tradition in the Mediterranean. The small dish approach is especially appealing as a late brunch or Saturday afternoon meal because it allows guests to sample a bite of this, a taste of that, without committing to a full-size meal. We designed this late lunch around a selection of classic meze made from scratch including hummus, dolmas, Mediterranean salad and tzatziki with pita. Since the dishes can be prepared ahead of time, this party is a relaxing one for the host, too.
Meze is a selection of small dishes served as entrees often enjoyed at large gatherings of friends or family. There's something inherently social about a meal like this. Each offering is meant to be shared and the menu allows everyone to experience a sampling of different flavors.
Set a celebratory tone for your gathering with our downloadable invitations and place cards. They're decorated with Greek key motifs and bordered with faux burnt edges. Achieving the effect of an antique scroll place card is easy. You'll write the name of your guest at the top of the place card and punch a hole in the center. You'll then roll up from the bottom, pull one end of the tie through the hole and the other end over the roll to meet in the center, where you'll tie them together. The place card template can also be used to create individual menus.
Most of the items on our menu can be found at specialty markets, but consider making the dishes from scratch using fresh ingredients, if you're feeling extra creative. Homemade hummus has a texture not found in supermarket brands, and fresh grape leaves have a deeper, richer flavor. Both dishes can be made ahead of time to simplify your preparations on the day of the party.
Spirits like ouzo and raki are the traditional accompaniments to meze, but you may wish to offer your guests a more familiar alternative. Cucumber-infused water is the perfect counterpoint to the flavorful dishes. To encourage guests to serve themselves, place our Farmhouse Drink Dispenser in easy reach, and put out an ample supply of melamine drinkware. To encourage guests to serve themselves, place our Farmhouse Drink Dispenser in easy reach, and put out an ample supply of melamine drinkware. Pair our meze choices with select wines from Sonoma Valley's Ram's Gate Winery (ramsgatewinery.com). We recommend their Sauvignon Blanc or their Chardonnay, Carneros.