Savor the warmth of friendship with a flavorful luncheon served during a day of croquet. The summer social unfolds blissfully on verdant carpets of grass dappled in golden sunlight.
Beneath a canopy of trees, a graciously appointed table bids challengers to pause from their play and sample an array of delectable treats. Lush floral bouquets, loosely arranged in antique-silver trophy cups echo the lively hues of rose-strewn linens and succulent fruits.
Invite guests to indulge their romantic sensibilities by dressing in white, the traditional attire for croquet. Dainty details soften these ensembles, while vintage-inspired jewelry and sun hats provide the finishing touches. Vintage balls and mallets, worn from years of recreation, lend a relaxed ambience to the outdoor affair.
“Praise the sports of the land, and the water, each one—the bath by the beach, or the yacht on the sea—but of all the sweet pleasures know under the sun, a ‘good’ game of croquet’s the sweetest to me.” —Mayne Reid
Above left: Sprinkles of chopped green olives, pancetta, and oregano enhance our Deviled Eggs—a slight twist on the classic recipe. The Cucumber Pimm’s Cup, above right, sparkles in goblets with mint, flavored vodka, and gin complementing a blend of sweetened tea and lemon-lime soda.
Savory and satisfying, Beef-Tenderloin Crostini, above left, boast medium-rare cuts of meat atop toasted baguettes. A tangy horseradish-cream mixture, shaved Parmesan, and pea tendrils complete the presentation. Above right: A glorious vision of seasonal splendor, Peach-Melba-and-Sabayon Trifle crowns this midsummer fête.
Text Melissa Lester
Photography Marcy Black Simpson
Styling Kathleen Cook and Missie Neville Crawford
Recipe Development and Food Styling Loren Wood
For more recipes to accompany your own elegant gathering, see “An Afternoon on the Lawn” on page 27 of the July/August 2014 issue of Victoria.