Open-House Planner

It's hard to imagine throwing a holiday party that goes from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., but, with planning, it might be the best party you've ever had. Ripe restaurant group of Portland, Oregon, plotted out a strategy for feeding 20 friends—day to night.

All Day

10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

WINES TO UNCORK A round, aromatic, fruity white, like the 2002 Hugel Gentil from Alsace, or the nonvintage Sokol Blosser Evolution from Oregon.

Crudités with Creamy Pistachio Dip • Rustic Chicken Liver Mousse • Spiced Prune Chutney • Ricotta and Prosecco Poached Pear Crostatas • STORE-BOUGHT Fennel Crackers with Taleggio Cheese and Blood Orange Marmalade • Fiore Sardo Cheese with Spiced Walnuts and Lady Apples

Brunch

10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

WINES TO UNCORK A fruity sparkling wine with acidity—a Spanish cava like the nonvintage Jaume Serra Cristalino Brut, say—or a fragrant Italian Prosecco like the nonvintage Nino Franco Primo.

Lemon and Arugula Salad • Crusty Potato Frittatas with Romesco Sauce • Roasted Winter Squash and Onion Turnovers • Brandied Apricot Butter • STORE-BOUGHT Dry-Cured Chorizo • Italian Country Bread

Snacks

2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

WINES TO UNCORK A red, white or rosé with soft fruit and good acidity. Look for a bright French Sancerre such as the 2002 Pascal Jolivet, a spicy Provençal rosé such as the 2002 Château Routas, or a tangy Italian red such as the 2002 Allegrini Valpolicella Classico.

Date, Goat Cheese and Pancetta on Walnut Bread • Roast Beef with Braised-Celery-and-Chile Relish on Ciabatta • Egg Salad with Capers and Spinach on Toasted Brioche • Hazelnut-Pine Nut Cookies

Dinner

6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

WINES TO UNCORK A red and a white with rich texture, plenty of character and some acidity. For a white, serve a fruity New World Sémillon such as the 1999 Amberley Margaret River from Australia. For a red, turn to a soft, lush, fruity wine from France's Languedoc-Roussillon such as the 2001 Château St. Martin de la Garrigue Bronzinelle.

Roasted Persimmons Wrapped in Pancetta • Cider-Braised Chicken Legs with Onion-Raisin Sauce • Celery Root-Leek Gratin • Semolina Cakes with Fig Compote • Chocolate Rosemary-Caramel Nut Bars

PUBLISHED December 2004

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