If there are two things the French do well, it’s wine and dining, so it’s no surprise that a ticket to Le Dîner en Blanc, next held in Brisbane, is the most coveted invitation on the luxe Australian party circuit this season.
Brought to our shores from Paris in 2012, this highly sophisticated, highly secretive, outdoor dinner party will return in October for its fourth consecutive year. Taking place October 17, 2000 people dressed in all-white, will assemble in a secret open-air Brisbane venue for an evening of wine, cheese and enchantment.
As always, the location will not be revealed until the night, with diners set to gather at meeting points around the city before being taken by foot, bus or train to the venue.
“Dîner en Blanc is such a weird and wonderful event,” says host, Brooke Williams. “It’s all about giving a popular public place a new life for just one night, and gathering with friends to enjoy great food and great company.”
Dinner guests are asked to bring a table, two chairs and a tablecloth (all white, of course!) along with their picnic hamper (unless pre-purchased). To add to the mystery, no trace of the soiree is left behind afterward; at the end of the evening, people pack up their tables, belongings and rubbish, and leave the area as if they were never there.
The all-white event originated in France in 1988 when Francois Pasquier organised an impromptu outdoor picnic and instructed his friends to wear white so that they could be easily spotted. The one-off get-together with friends became an annual tradition, which has now grown into a worldwide phenomenon.
“At the time of Australia’s first Dîner en Blanc in 2012, Brisbane was one of 20 cities to get on board,” says Brooke. “Today, more than 60 Dîner en Blanc events take place around the world, and the list keeps growing.”
It is a typically Parisian-chic affair that has fast become a cult social gathering across the globe due to its elegance and mystery.
“Dîner en Blanc is one of Brisbane’s most special and sought-after events. Last year’s tickets sold out within days, and the event continues to grow in popularity,” says Amy Grey, co-host with Ms Williams.
So how do you nab one of these highly sought-after tickets? The answer is quickly.
Tickets go on sale in waves this week. Previous years guests will be invited first, they can then sponsor a friend, before the rest of the tickets go on sale to those on the waiting list. Tickets for the patiently-waiting go on sale September 29, so pop your name on the list now so you don’t miss out.
First time attending the prestigious white dinner? Here are a few key things-to-know before you rock up in a red dress…
Dîner en Blanc housekeeping rules
- Once confirmed, each guest’s participation becomes mandatory, regardless of weather conditions. This is a rain or shine event.
- Dress code: elegant and white only. Originality is encouraged as long as it is stylish and tasteful – leave the muscle tees, thongs and ‘flannys’ at home.
- Etiquette, etiquette, etiquette. This is a fancy revelry, behave accordingly. No karaoke or beer pong at this event.
- In fact, no beer at all. Wine and champagne can be purchased in advance from Sirromet Wines but beer and hard liquor are prohibited.
- Table setting: all white! Fine food is the all-white exception but white dinnerware and proper stemware are required, plastic is not allowed.
- Attendees can bring their own food or purchase a pre-made hamper, courtesy of Cuisine on Cue. Decadence is encouraged with the spread.
- In order to leave the event location as clean as when they arrived, guests are required to leave with all their belongings, leftovers and litter.
Can’t make the Brisbane soiree? Don’t fret – it’s heading to Sydney next on November 28, 2015.