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How to Host an Italian-
Inspired Garden Party

Warm weather, beautiful vistas, gardens in bloom and cafés with Spritzes-who doesn’t dream of a summer spent in Italy.

As America’s favorite sparkling brand and the leading wine from Italy, we know a thing or two about all that Summer in Italy has to offer, and how the Italian way of life, La Dolce Vita, is meant to be enjoyed. Italians are known for celebrating all of life’s little pleasures and we would love to share how you can add an Italian inspired touch to your next celebration to be sure it’s a memorable one.

One of the first things you will notice when dining in Italy is that the Italian’s have a lot figured out. There is a warmth and ease to an Italian gathering which always makes your guests feel welcome. During Summer, locals and tourists alike enjoy a Spritz or bubbling glass of Prosecco outside to mark the start of an evening of enjoying time with family and friends before transitioning to dinner.

Picture this, the warm breeze blows gently through your hair, you can smell the roses and lavender that have finally bloomed in your garden, and you just had your first sip of a delicious and bubbly glass of La Marca Prosecco or a Spritz.

So now that you have Italian summer pictured in your head, let us inspire you to host an Italian inspired Garden Party in your own backyard, sparkling Spritzes and bubbly Prosecco included.

strolling in the garden

Choosing A Day for your Italian Garden Party

One of the things you will learn about the Italian way of life is that they don’t wait for a special occasion to celebrate. They always prioritize time together with the people that are important in their lives, so our biggest suggestion is not to put off celebrating with your family and friends. A garden party can be a great way to transform an everyday get-together with friends into a celebration.

Choosing A Menu for An Italian-inspired Garden Party

When in Italy enjoying a drink during Aperitivo hour, it always includes delicious and elegant small bites. For an Italian inspired garden party, you will want something delicious that is going to stand up to summer sun, so we love a beautiful charcuterie board filled with some of our favorite Italian delicacies. We would like to start with a few things that are easy for your guests to grab and pair perfectly with Prosecco, olives, like kalamata or Castelvetrano, lightly salted nuts, and kettle chips. There are few things that pair more perfectly with Prosecco than salty snacks and these are all ones you will find authentically at cafes in Italy. Next, you will want to include something a little bit hardier, cured meats like prosciutto and salami are a great additions and mini fresh mozzarella paired with some toasted baguettes allow guests to make mini-Italian sandwiches which are simple and elegant and always delight a crowd. Finally, we love to include a variety of bruschetta, which is a classic Italian dish. Some of our favorites that are easy to prepare are kalamata olive tapenade, which you can find at most upscale grocery stores, and a fresh tomato and garlic. We love to use heirloom tomatoes for color and a little extra elegance.

garden party food and drink

Choosing Drinks for an Italian-inspired Garden Party

When hosting outside, you will want drinks that will be refreshing for your guests and to offer a variety of options so guests can choose what appeals most to them. We love serving Prosecco on these types of occasions because it has a lower alcohol level, is bright and crisp, and is a wine that everyone will enjoy. It also is incredibly versatile and can be served as a Spritz. Having a few aperitivos on hand, we love bitter orange or floral bases like bergamot or elderflower, which make great additions that allow guests to customize their drinks. Finally, we always love a selection of non-alcoholic options like Italian sodas and water with lemon and mint to make great Italian inspired refreshing options for your guests.

Choosing Décor for your Garden Party

There are few things more elegant for an outdoor party than fresh flowers. Summer is one of the best seasons because there are so many varieties of flowers in bloom. Roses are one of our favorites because they are often grown in Italian vineyards, so we love to use them as a base and an accent with other flowers like ranunculus and chamomile. Chamomile flowers add a whimsical touch and add the feeling that they were freshly cut from the garden. If you have flowers in bloom in your own garden, we love using what you have. Including flowers from your personal garden can be a great conversation starter with your guests.

One of the things we love most about Italy, which a lot of people don’t realize prior to visiting, is the many beautiful artisan textiles that are made there. To add an extra authentic touch to your Italian garden party, look for Italian linen napkins and tablecloths. Floral patterns can be a great addition to help enhance your theme along with soft pinks and blues. The addition of Italian stoneware plates, in place of paper or plastic plates, instantly elevate the occasion.

Italian garden party tablescape
garden party picnic with prosecco

How to prepare for the day of the celebration

We always recommend arranging your flowers the day before and making sure your tablecloth is pressed and ready to be placed on the table. Setting out all your decorations well before your guests' arrival ensures you are relaxed and excited when they arrive. Food and drinks take little time to prepare and can be prepped shortly before guests arrive. Choose some music you know your guests will like, and in true Italian fashion, make sure to greet each of your guests personally. This warm gesture will ensure they feel welcome and show how much you care.