Styled by JONATHAN PARKEY

Dinner at home doesn't have to feel like a routine this summer. There are little ways to spruce up a night in to make it feel like a fun night out. And although temperatures are rising, dining al fresco is always a treat, especially when you have a stunning spread and refreshing cocktail to combat the summer heat.


First things first, don’t forget dessert. One way to make dinner at home feel special is to finish the meal with something decadent. If you really want to treat yourself, order in. Trio’s strawberry shortcake is a classic Little Rock summer dish, and the staff can package it to-go so you can enjoy at home.

"Bust out the good stuff. Just because it’s a casual, outdoor party for two or four, don’t let that stop you from bringing out your china and silver. Try pairing your fine pieces with more casual elements to give a different flair to an outside experience." JP

Fresh Peach Old Dominick

  • 4 oz. Old Dominick Gin
  • 1 very ripe peach
  • 4 mint sprigs (reserve 2 for garnish)
  • 2 tsp. simple syrup
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • Fever-Tree Club Soda

INSTRUCTIONS:
Wash peach and pat dry. Peel and halve the peach, discarding the pit. Cut peach into thin slices and reserve two slices for garnish.

In a cocktail shaker, muddle peach slices, mint sprigs and simple syrup. Add ice, gin and lemon juice. Shake until well chilled, about 30 seconds. Taste for sweetness. If needed, add more simple syrup, a little at a time, to achieve desired sweetness.

Pour into two glasses filled with ice. Top with club soda and garnish with reserved mint and peach.

Recipe by Colonial Wines & Spirits

"Tying a ribbon around your napkin is a small detail that can really make the evening feel more thoughtful. You can use any napkins and ribbon you already have at home. The ribbon can add a little color to your table or connect your overall color scheme." JP

How to Stock Your Summer Bar

  • Personalize your bar with the things you enjoy most. There are no wrong choices.
  • A well-stocked summer bar will feature white spirits, wine and a variety of waters and mixes.
  • Limit glassware selections to a general-purpose wine glass and a rocks or highball glass. If Champagne is a summer favorite, add a few flutes.
  • Bar tools are essential. Add a good waiter’s tool (like a corkscrew that also opens beer bottles), an ice bucket, shaker, muddler and a bar knife. Expand from there according to your entertaining style.

"Inspiration and decor can come from anywhere. Instead of making 10 stops to fill your table with something special, grab some citrus from the grocery store or look to your own pantry for colors and pieces to brighten your table." JP