The Ultimate Secret to Elevating Every Gathering

Table Top FlowersLet’s set the scene: You’ve been tasked with hosting a dinner party at your home and you don’t even bat an eye over the food element because you are a master in the kitchen (or have Alltown Fresh doing the catering!). However, you want everything to look as good as it tastes and the thought of putting together a picture-perfect table threatens your title of ‘best home entertainer.’

Phil Setting Table

Instead of you running to Google, we’ve called in an expert. Meet Phil Corona, Alltown Fresh Catering Manager, who has hosted thousands of events, parties, and weddings in his career. Phil knows what it takes to make a lasting impression, especially when it comes to what you’re putting down on your table. Follow his five top tips to elevate your next event with a simple tablescape (yup, that’s the secret).


  1. Phil Pouring WineLess is more. Setting the table is all about the guest experience. Having small centerpieces and decor allows the food and guests to be the main focus. Nothing is worse than having a large centerpiece that disrupts the table conversations or doesn’t provide enough space for the guests to put their water glasses down easily.
  2. Traditions. Do you have china or linen that is only for special occasions? Something that is the most expensive item in your home until it is used more often. A new history can be created by using something that can bring the family together. For me, it’s a rustic board we use for family dinners.
  3. Inclusivity. Sometimes being a host is a burden and can be a lot of work. So, say yes to that additional dish from Aunt Denise. Have the kids make place cards or set the table. Have others become a part of putting the gathering together. This way it becomes a group effort that will grow year after year. A house with an open door is always warm and inviting.
  4. Personal. You’ve had others help with the night, so maybe you have extra time to make a menu card.  Plenty of templates online to create something quick and easy. This is where you can call out those who helped. Also, with the menu cards, there will be a blank side where you can leave a personalized note to each of your guests to create another thoughtful moment.
  5. Convenient. You know your guest and each of their preferences. It is important to ensure each of them has everything they need and can easily access. Also, make sure to prep beforehand so you can enjoy your time with your guests. Hosting an event and being in the kitchen for most of the time can take you away from having a fun time with your guests. Prep a day or two ahead and dishes can always be saved for the day after.


Whether hosting outdoors or creating a cozy winter spread, Phil suggests taking it all in by pausing, breathing, and noticing those surrounding your table. These are the moments we will always remember.

Learn more about how Alltown Fresh can support your next hosted event.