Hosting a dinner party can be a tricky business. Even for a seasoned dinner party pro, it's a balancing act of preparation, timing and if all else fails, plenty of drinks! One false move and you could end up feeling frazzled but it could be worse... Your guests could commit one of these 9 dinner party faux pas, and that will be the last straw! If you've hosted for more than one of these nightmare dinner party guest types in the same evening, our hat comes off to you! Oh, and one last thing, leave them off your guest list next time...
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1. The one who's always late
So you've calculated your timings, spent a sizeable chunk of the day prepping for when your guests arrive and when the doorbell starts ringing, you greet everyone with a cold glass of fizz. You're ready to kick things off with the starter - except, hold on, you've just done a headcount and you're still one guest short. You check your phone and there it is, the "so sorry - start without me!" text message, which, let's face it, we all know very well isn't going to happen. There's nothing to ruin a dinner party quite like hangry guests (that's hungry and angry, because those two go hand in hand...)
2. The one who arrived empty handed
Anyone who says this isn't a big deal is clearly as uncivilized as the guest that failed to bring a bottle of something to your dinner party. You've cooked for them, will entertain them for an evening and clean up after them - the least they could have done is bring a bottle, or some flowers!
3. The fussy eater
Of course, if you're expecting a guest who is vegetarian, has a nut allergy or any sort of intolerance, any good host will be able to adapt their menu accordingly. No problem at all. What IS a problem, however, is that just as you're serving the main course, someone protests loudly that they don't eat one of the key ingredients - because they don't like it (and this is news to you!). You awkwardly suggest you'll go and see if there's anything else in the kitchen they can have, all the while feeling totally deflated, only to be met with ‘oh it's fine, I'll just pick around it'. Make a mental note: leave this one off the guest list next time.
4. The one who has a few too many
There's always one who takes it too far and ends up slightly over-indulging with the booze. We're talking full-on flushed face, slurring words, knocking things over... As the evening winds down, it's your duty as host to peel them out of their seat and make sure they safely get into a taxi. Oh, the joys of hosting!
5. The ‘connoisseur'
There's nothing worse than someone who thinks they know best about everything. It's like a ceaseless running commentary on everything you dish up and quite frankly, no one likes a smug know-it-all.
6. The food critic
When you've spent hours preparing a meal you're proud of, there's nothing worse than having a guest pipe up all evening, criticising your choice of wine, your 'over-enthusiasm with the garlic' or that the dessert is 'a bit rich for me'. Unless you're complimenting the dinner, we don't want to hear it!
7. The one who won't stop talking politics
Things always seem to get heated when politics comes to the dinner table and we all know one person who thrives off it. They love nothing more than 'a little healthy debate', but we don't remember putting it on the menu... Save it for another time.
8. The raconteur
Now, there's nothing wrong with being able to entertain a group with witty and engaging anecdotes; in fact, it's very welcome at a dinner party... But there always seems to be one guest that won't let up the podium and dominates the conversation all evening. How are they not bored of their own voice yet?
9. The one who doesn't know when to leave
It's great knowing that your friends are having a good time at your dinner party and that they don't want the evening to come to an end, but there's always a lingerer or two who don't know that it's time to call it a day. Please, just leave so we can lie down...