What Do You Bring To The Party?

STAR TURNS: with party season in full swing, a singer, head chef, sommelier and more tell us what they bring to the party …

Mary-Kate is photographed at Xavier’s Bar, FX Buckley’s, Pembroke Street, Dublin 2, Blue velvet suit, Masscob, at Beautiful South, Rathmines. Make up by Faye Miller, @makeupfayesarah

Mary-Kate Geraghty “I bring the music” Singer, Songwriter and DJ 

“An old school hip hop playlist gets the party going” 

BEST PARTY “In Austin, Texas with the band (the all-male-save-Mary-Kate Le Galaxie). We were taking part in the South by Southwest Festival. The party was hosted by friends: beautiful house, amazing food, tequila and fun guests, a Phil Collins soundtrack. For me, the success of a party takes its lead from a relaxed host but you also need a good playlist.”

BEST PLAYLIST  “I steal playlists from friends with impeccable taste in music, such as Dublin-based DJ Sally Cinnamon – LCD Soundsystem, Ratatat, Metronomy. But sometimes you just have to lash on “Red Red Wine” by UB40 and sing it to your nearest pal.”

CHRISTMAS DIARY “I just finished presenting the Other Voices Festival in Dublin. It’s a busy month. Le Galaxie are playing Wexford on December 6, Castlebar on December 28 and Opium in Dublin on New Year’s Eve. We just released two singles from our album Pleasure,  “L.I.E.” and “Women in Love” – both party-starters – we will definitely be playing those.” 

Caroline Sleiman “I bring the coffee” Co-founder and director Coffee angel

“I bring the coffee, usually single origin beans, ground to suit the host’s brewing method”

BEST PARTY “A New Year’s Eve Party in Beirut, Lebanon, was especially memorable. The setting was a magnificent house overlooking the Med. The weather was extremely mild, fire pits burned, delicious food and champagne was served, guests were incredibly elegant and most importantly, there were many, many hours of laughter and dancing, moving between the garden and house. Towards dawn, breakfast was served and we watched the sun come up on a new year, surrounded by people we love with a warm cup of coffee in hand.”

FAVOURITE PARTY DRESS “I am a huge advocate of understated and elegant investment pieces. I have a few LBDs, some short,  some long, I can always fall back on.”

CAFFEINE FIX “Fórsa Gála, Irish for “gale force”, is our bestselling coffee and I love our new fruity, floral Guatemalan single estate. Our Christmas blend, Sú Nollag, (Irish for “Christmas juice”) has notes of red berries and dark chocolate, and tastes delicious served black or with milk, at breakfast, after a long leisurely lunch or, my favourite, after a decadent dinner.”

Grainne O’Keefe “I bring the culinary experience” Head Chef, Clanbrassil House

“I always offer to cook at parties, especially at Christmas”

BEST PARTY “The best nights are always unplanned. After the Forbidden Fruit festival a few years ago, I went out for drinks and bumped into the band Public Enemy, which turned into an unofficial after-party with Flava Flav and the crew.” 

MY TRADITION “I spend Christmas with my sister. We have a champagne breakfast and then I start to prepare dinner for everyone. Usually we spend the evening playing board games though Monopoly has been banned for life, as it just got too contentious. On St Stephen’s Day, I prepare another dinner for my nieces and nephews. As a chef, Christmas is one of the few times that I spend a lot of time with my family. I relish it.”

FESTIVE MENU “To start, hot smoked trout, then a roast with all the trimmings.
I’m not a huge turkey fan, I prefer duck and of course honey-glazed ham. My sister makes a delicious trifle every year. I tend to stay away from Christmas pudding and mince pies. And lots of champagne, of course.” 

Philip Dunne “I bring the bubbles” Head sommelier The Westbury

“When you hear  the pop of a champagne cork, you know you’re at a great party”

BEST PARTY “A wine-fuelled dinner party with good friends. Each friend brings one of their own special bottles of wine or  a wine they absolutely love, and we deliver our verdicts. We also get to insult each other’s attempts at being the chef for the evening!”

 

Natasha Sherling “I bring the bread” Jewellery designer

“It makes me happy to know something I made can bring joy. Challah takes time, love and skill a bit like bespoke jewellery design”

BEST PARTY “My wedding will always be one of the best parties I’ve been to. When I lived in New York while studying gemology, I was invited to Tommy Hilfiger’s 25th anniversary party at the Met Opera which was spectacular. Jennifer Lopez and Bradley Cooper were some of the guests, dancing to The Strokes.” 

MY RECIPE “Challah is an iconic bread in any Jewish household and represents a special meal. I’ve been making it since I was twelve and I still use the same recipe as my very first batch. Honey can be used especially around Rosh Hashana, symbolising a sweet year ahead. It tastes amazing with salty butter – and even better the morning, as the most incredible French toast.”

MY TRADITION This year, my baby girl will be just four months old the week Channukah rolls around; I’m looking forward to sharing some of the traditions with her before her dad introduces her to Christmas later in the month!

Amelia Caulfield “I bring the camera” Videographer

“A great event video? Fly-on-the-wall shots of guests enjoying themselves”

BEST PARTY “The premiere of Dollhouse, directed by Kirsten Sheridan, in The Factory on Grand Canal Dock. I was interning at the time and helped create scenes from the film in the party space, so when people left the screening, they stepped right back into the world of the film. It was magical.” 

TOP TIPS “I’m always thinking about how to tell a story. I make sure to capture a mixture of atmospheric shots and close-up details to progress the narrative. I like the observational method, where you let events unfold naturally in front of you without interference. I film constantly until something happens, then I use that moment.”

MY TRADITION “For the past ten years, I have helped my sister organise an annual Christmas Day mile walk – we have raised over €10,500 for Goal. This year I’ll do the walk in Thomastown, Kilkenny, my home town. Then I’ll go home and cook a vegan Christmas feast with my family … Mushroom Wellington with all the trimmings!”

Steph Hutch and Claire Ryan “We bring the flowers” The Crate florists

“Beautiful flowers are a great conversation starter ” 

Best Party “The Great Gatsby party in the Royal Hospital, Kilmainham. We both love to dress up and adore anything with a 1920s theme. We went all out in our flapper dresses and headdresses and danced all night.” 

PARTY GAME “Charades are always fun, especially when the wine is flowing.”

TOP TIP “Choosing a colour theme is a good starting point. The red anenome is a delicate flower in season in December. Styled with textured greenery and grasses, it’s a lovely alternative to traditional Christmas flowers.” 

TABLESCAPING “A sprig of gold-painted foliage always adds a glam twist to arrangements. For individual place settings, tie dried flowers with fragrant rosemary or eucalyptus, or mistletoe. You can give them to your guests to take home as a little momento.”

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