I love summer nights and I love summer cocktail parties even more...I thought it would be a good idea to share a few tips for throwing a summer cocktail party, regarding the food...the time of the party usually determines what type of food and how much of each dish to offer your guests.
As a rule of thumb, the earlier the party the lighter the food can be (just keep in mind that cocktails tend to make people hungry). So, if your hosting a cocktail party as a starter to the evening (maybe no more then 2 hours) the hors d'oeuvres should be light - on average I would suggest choosing about 6 different appies for your guests (2 - 3 servings per guest). If the party goes through dinner time then plan to have 8 to 10 dishes (3 servings per guest) - oh and select heavier hors d'oeuvres - cheese platters, tamales, crab cakes, sliders and french fries with gourmet dips are just a few of my suggestions. Don't forget the dips - crackers, cheese, melba toast and pate...yum!! One of the great things about these ideas is that you can easily replenish them throughout the party (and the night). This will also leave you with lots of time to party with your guests.