Celebrity Chef Ted Reader has developed a list of tips for good backyard BBQ party etiquette that if followed, will help you get invited back to the next party.
“When it comes to attending someone else’s barbecue party or hosting your own backyard bash, there are a few rules of etiquette that you should use as guidelines,” said Reader. “Take it from me, I host a number of barbecue fests and I’ve learned a bit about the rights and wrongs. Most of these tips are pretty straightforward but there’s always that one guy who just doesn’t know. My advice is to follow these tips and not be that guy.”
When you’re a guest at a BBQ Party:
- Don’t Touch the Grill: This is the domain of the host and/or hostess, and moving in on their BBQ turf is the biggest faux pas that you can make. As a guest, you can watch but never touch. Asking questions, though, is completely acceptable.
- Bring Something: A bottle of wine or some beer; or, if you feel up to it, even a side dish you’ve made. But make sure there is enough to go around. Even a jar of your favourite barbecue sauce is a great gift. I suggest Ted’s World Famous BBQ Sauces and Seasonings.
- Be Respectful: Your hosts have enough stress throwing a party; they don’t need any added aggravation. Never tell the person working the grill how to do it, or that what he or she is doing is wrong. Mind your manners and only offer suggestions when asked.
When you’re hosting the BBQ Party:
- Make sure your grill is clean. A clean grill is a healthy grill, and it makes you look professional.
- If you’re using propane as your fuel source, make sure you have a full tank and a backup just in case. There is nothing worse than running out of fuel while you’re in the middle cooking. The same goes for charcoal. Make sure that you have enough.
- Invest in proper utensils. This simple tip makes you look like a pro. Rusted or dirty gear however, does the exact opposite.
- Prepare recipes that you are comfortable and familiar with. Test recipes on your family (they will forgive you), not your guests.
- Create a theme for your BBQ party: a birthday, Father’s Day, Canada Day, Fourth of July or any other celebration. A theme will make it easier to plan a menu and get yourself organized.
- Have a vegetarian option. Meat is the mainstay of the barbecue, but not all of your guests may eat it, so provide a secondary option. Grilled Portobello mushroom caps topped with assorted grilled vegetables and some cheese is a great vegetarian choice.
- Don’t feel obligated to invite your neighbours. Not all parties require their presence.
- Provide taxi rides for those who have a little too much fun.