Summer Pool Party Menu and Recipes

Summer Pool Party Menu

Here is a tried and true menu for a relaxing summer party.  Most of these recipes can be made up several days ahead (see the details in the recipes).  A few need a last minute touch before they are ready to serve, but most just need to be taken out, brought to room temperature, and set on festive summer serving plates.  Because the preparation can be done over a period of several days before your event, you can enjoy your own party and spend a bit more time on the day of the party arranging flowers and making sure everything is “just right”.

All of the serving suggestions given assume that these dishes are being served in a buffet setting with many other dishes.  If you want to use one of these recipes in a dinner setting with fewer dishes, the serving size will need to be adjusted.  (E.g., “serves 24 in a buffet” may translate into “serves 8” for a dinner setting.)

Since all of the food is set out in buffet style, the wines can also be self-serve.  I recommend the following wines for this August menu.  You will need to keep the whites at around 55 degrees, the Pinot Noir around 60 – 62, and the rest of the reds at 65.  That can be a challenge if it is hot, but keeping the wine at the correct temperatures is very important.

Freestone Vineyards 'Fogdog' Chardonnay
Freestone Vineyards 'Fogdog' Pinot Noir
Joseph Phelps Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

The recipes are linked below.  In addition to these menu items, I also like to set out fresh fruit that is in season.  Here in Napa and Sonoma, we are very spoiled by the quality of our fruit and vegetables, but I see that trend spreading across the country so find out what is at their best and show off your local produce.  I also like to set out a small table with local artisan breads and local cheeses, but this is optional. 

White Bean Spread
Spicy Carrot Salad
Gingered Eggplant Spread
Roasted Beets with Goat Cheese
Roasted Tomatoes
Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
Frittata with Mushrooms, Sweet Onion, and Gruyere Cheese
Mixed Green Salad with Creamy Garlic Dressing
Poached Salmon with Green Sauce
Bittersweet Chocolate Cake

We hope you enjoy a lovely summer pool party.