The Art of Entertaining has been curated by friends of Cloudy Bay as a guide to effortlessly recreate our Wonderscape experience at home. From crafting a menu showcasing seasonal produce to styling a tablescape inspired by the wonder of nature, the Art of Entertaining is your guide to sipping and savouring the best of Cloudy Bay wines in the company of friends and family.
In this extract from The Art of Entertaining, one half of New Zealand based DJ music duo Sweet Mix Kids, Sandon Ihaia, shares his expertise when it comes to curating the ultimate long lunch playlist.
Sandon embodies impeccable taste when it comes to selecting the perfect soundtrack for every moment. Having worked with artists from almost every music genre, Sandon believes that the best playlists are not limited to one type of sound.
Start off with cool and classy tunes that showcase a range of instrumentals and soul music. This is the time to show off your sophistication by complementing your surroundings and food with a carefully curated selection of sounds. The happiest guests are the ones talking. Tease and tempt your guests on what’s to come, however choose tracks with background grooves that people can easily converse over. Volume is key and you want to encourage connection while also setting the mood for the rest of the day.
The next thing is to keep the location of your musical device a secret to ensure the mood is right throughout the day. There’s always one confident guest who will try to play ABBA before your Cloudy Bay Pelorus has even been poured. Have a carefully curated playlist ready to go, so that you’re able to press play and step away.
To really set the scene and impress your guests, don’t be afraid to pull out all the stops. If you have a record player hiding away, or a friend with DJ decks, this is the time to put these on the display. Don’t forget, your speakers are just as important as the playlist. Make sure you have good quality speakers placed in all the areas you’ll be hosting in.
Almost everything always comes back to the food - the true centrepiece of the occasion. Now that your guests are happily seated at the table, make sure the music enhances the flavours and culture on the plate. A few old house music classics and a couple of retro tunes should keep your guests’ heads bobbing as they chat and enjoy their mains.
Finally, it’s time to end the night in style and if you’re not quite ready for the moment to end you can continue into the night with a few of your favourite dance tracks. Save the best for last and give your guests something to remember. A few classics per decade always goes down well. By thanking your guests for coming and upping the volume you’re telling everyone your job here is done and you’ll see them heels on or off on the kitchen dancefloor.