I recently enjoyed a wonderful dinner party at the home of my friend Lisa who is known in the food blog world is known as Jersey Girl Cooks. All of the guests at the dinner were food bloggers and their families. As you can imagine, the conversation at the table centered on food. "Have you eaten at this restaurant? Did you hear that Philadelphia is getting a Shake Shack? The best burger can be found here. No here. No this other place. Is there any way to make red velvet cake with a natural food dye? Did you know cherries are just showing up at the farmers market?"

This was dinner party nirvana for me. I love sharing a meal with others, and when the conversation is something I can contribute knowledgeably to, it's the icing on the cake. So I thought I'd point you to some dinner party reading this weekend. Maybe it will inspire you to throw one of your own.

  • Giada De Laurentiis is barefoot when she cooks and entertains at her dinner parties. Just one more reason why I like this girl. The Wall Street Journal profiled the celebrity chef's wardrobe choices when she throws a dinner party.
  • Here's a dinner party piece that might scare you. Apparently simple doesn't mean easy anymore. Chicago Business profiles millenials that insist everything be made from simple ingredients ("as in slow-roasting the free-range chicken you raised in the back yard on organic feed. In your free time.") One guest that brought a store-bought cake to one of these parties where the bar is always being raised has since "gotten smarter." You've got to be kidding me! I promise you this. If you're ever at my home for dinner, you are more than welcome to bring a store bought cake. And wear jeans. And be barefoot.
  • The Kitchn has tips, recipes and good ideas for weeknight dinner parties. They believe that Monday is the best night for a dinner party.
  • Over on the Sporkful blog (that accompanies the Sporkful podcast), you can listen to hosts interview the Dinner Party Download guys about dinner parties. Can you assign jobs to guests? Should guests have to bring something? I answer yes to these questions, but the guys on this podcast don't necessarily agree with me.
Enjoy your weekend!

Photo: Matt Callow/Flickr

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

Weekend reads: Dinner party dos and don'ts
Food news and items of interest from around the Web — Giada de Laurentiis, Jersey Girl Cooks and weeknight dinner parties.