dinner-en-blanc-philadelphia.jpg The season of white is back in the City of Brotherly Love!  Philadelphia’s Dîner en Blanc geared up for its 5th year at the Preview Party last night at Reading Terminal and yours truly was lucky enough to be there!

Dîner en Blanc is a coveted, mysterious global dining event that began in Paris—one night every summer people around the world dress in white and gather in a beautiful public outdoor space to luxuriate in a gourmet meal—here’s the catch—the location is kept top secret until the very last minute!  The preview party is a chance for people to gather to preview the food and festivities of this elegant pop-up picnic!

chef-jacquie-laura-eaton-winning-table-dinner-en-blanc.jpgI was invited by Laura Eaton, owner of Soirée Philadelphia and our in-house photographer. Laura is the creative maven and won the people’s choice award for her table at this event last year–I’m the foodie. This year we put our talents together to create a themed tablescape for the preview!  The overall theme of this year’s Dîner en Blanc is Philadelphia Firsts—celebrating Philadelphia as the first planned city with open spaces and parks.

When we got there, it was fast-paced and exciting!  The Preview Party hosts a contest for the best table theme and there were so many beautiful creations on display, each representing a different Philadelphia First.

çOur table theme was Dr. Peale’s Butterfly Box, an invention that preserves butterflies in a glass-faced wooden box so they can be viewed from all sides and studied—a first in Philadelphia! You can view the Peale Boxes at the Academy of Natural Sciences!

Invention brought inspiration to our table with gilded branches graced with delicate white butterflies and white flowers contrasted with green ivy vines (all Laura!). I brought the food and set the table. A mini white three-tier wedding cake accented with golden pearls, an intimate table setting for two in white and gold, and of course, bubbly!

With our creative collaboration, we WON the judges’ choice award! We’re a great team!

chef-jacquie-chef-luke-palladino-diner-en-blanc-preview.jpgWhat a fun time we had hanging out with Chef Luke Palladino… For this event, they brought in the three caterers that will be featured at Dîner en Blanc and each presented a preview of their food in anticipation of the evening to come.  I can’t wait to see what Chef Luke serves up with for the main event in August!

Of course when I see my buddies—he owns a restaurant on East Passyunk Ave—we have to hang out.  I can’t say enough good things about this guy and his food.  If you haven’t tried Chef Palladino’s food, get your butt into one of his restaurants this summer.

chef-jacquie-winning-table-diner-en-blanc-closeup.jpgSpecial thanks to Zoya Eagon for donating her time and talents to create my hat for the event and for the display! Many thanks to the fabulous co-hosts of DEB Philadelphia, Natanya Dibona and Kayli Moran, who announced the date Tuesday night!

I have no idea where we’ll be, but I hope to see you on the evening of August 18th, with your whites on!




Read our feature in Philly.com right here!