Diner en Blanc Comes to NYC

Diner en Blanc NYC

Ever heard of it? Neither have we until this week. Here’s the 411: Parisians have been secretly holding out on us about some serious dining dish for the past 23 years. Dîner en Blanc is an annual guerilla-style event where thousands of diners fully dressed in their finest threads of white and only white come together in an undisclosed public space, bring their own tables, chairs, food, and of course, copious amounts of booze, set up shop, dine, and destroy the evidence come midnight without as much as a single bread crumb. Mission impossible? I think not!

Dîner en Blanc

Diner en Blanc

These stealthy ninjas of culinary panache  have popped open bottles of bubbly in the likes of the Louvre’s courtyard and Notre Dame’s plaza. This year, New York is hosting their very own first Dîner en Blanc or Dinner in White. 1,000s of guests are to be in attendance, some invited and some were lucky enough have privy knowledge on the sitch signing up for an online waiting list. This night of dining and dancing under the stars in one of New York’s undisclosed alfresco public spaces will take place on August 25, 2011. I’m curious to see which one of New York’s prime locales is chosen for this dining decadence.

What really intrigues me about Dîner en Blanc is the fact that the secret site is kept under wraps and the sly spontaneity of the event really takes the term, “dining experience” to  a whole other level. Not to mention, these sneaky satiaters are able to take their pumpkin carriages (or taxis) to this “ball”, dine, dance, and return the public space back to its pristine original state, untouched, all before the clock strikes twelve where they will undoubtedly turn back into chimney sweeping peasants. What a great way to become vigilante! Well, not so much a vigilante, I suppose. Nonetheless, this should be your dining mission whether you choose to accept it. Put on that white chiffon sun-dress, grab a bottle of sparkling rosé, and dine with the devious. This blog post will self-destruct in 5…4…3…2…

What is the history of Diner en Blanc?

Dîner en Blanc is a popular and unique outdoor dining event that originated in France in the late 1980’s. The event is known for its elegant and secretive nature, where attendees dress in all-white attire and gather at a specific public location for a pop-up picnic.

Here’s a brief history of Dîner en Blanc:

  • Inception in Paris: Dîner en Blanc was first organized in Paris in 1988 by François Pasquier, along with a group of friends. Pasquier had recently returned to Paris after spending some time abroad and wanted to reconnect with old friends. They decided to have a picnic in the Bois de Boulogne park and asked everyone to wear white to easily identify one another.
  • Growth and Traditions: The event’s inaugural success led to the decision to make it an annual tradition. Each year, the guest list would grow, and attendees would continue to dress entirely in white. The concept of bringing your own gourmet meal, table settings, and chairs became part of the event’s charm.
  • Secrecy and Elegance: One of the unique aspects of Dîner en Blanc is its secretive nature. The event’s location is kept a closely guarded secret until the last minute, often revealed just hours before the dinner begins. Attendees are typically transported to the secret location by public transportation, adding an element of surprise and excitement to the event.
  • Global Expansion: Dîner en Blanc’s popularity grew steadily in Paris, and by 1991, it had already attracted thousands of participants. In the following years, the event expanded to other cities in France. In 2009, it made its international debut with events in Montreal and around the world.
  • Worldwide Phenomenon: Dîner en Blanc has since become a global phenomenon, with events held in major cities worldwide, including New York City, London, Sydney, and many more. Each event is organized by a local team, but they all adhere to the same basic principles of elegance, secrecy, and bringing your own white-themed dining setup.
  • Contemporary Tradition: Dîner en Blanc has evolved into a contemporary tradition, where participants come together for an evening of fine dining, entertainment, and socializing in iconic and unexpected locations. It has become a celebration of culinary arts, cultural exchange, and the joy of sharing a meal with friends and strangers alike.

Today, Dîner en Blanc continues to captivate people’s imagination and remains a highly anticipated event in cities across the globe, attracting participants from all walks of life who are eager to embrace the elegance and magic of this unique outdoor dining experience.

What’s the point of Dîner en Blanc?

Dîner en Blanc serves several purposes and holds various meanings for its participants, making it a unique and multifaceted event.

Here are some of the key points and purposes of Dîner en Blanc:

  • Elegance and Tradition: Dîner en Blanc emphasizes elegance and the tradition of dressing in all-white attire. Participants embrace the opportunity to don their finest white outfits, adding an element of sophistication and formality to the event.
  • Outdoor Dining: The event celebrates the joy of dining outdoors. It provides participants with a chance to enjoy a gourmet meal in the open air, often in iconic or unexpected urban settings, creating a unique dining experience.
  • Culinary Appreciation: Dîner en Blanc encourages attendees to bring their own gourmet meals, table settings, and decorations. This highlights the appreciation for culinary arts and creativity in preparing and presenting food.
  • Community and Socializing: The event brings people from diverse backgrounds together to socialize and connect. It’s an opportunity to meet new people and strengthen existing friendships, fostering a sense of community and togetherness.
  • Secrecy and Surprise: The secrecy surrounding the event, including the last-minute reveal of the location, adds an element of surprise and excitement. Participants enjoy the thrill of discovering where the event will take place, which can often be an iconic or picturesque spot in their city.
  • Global Connection: Dîner en Blanc has grown into a global phenomenon, allowing participants to connect with others around the world who share their love for this unique dining experience. It promotes a sense of global community and cultural exchange.
  • Spontaneity: The event encourages spontaneity and a sense of adventure. Participants must be prepared to adapt to various conditions, including unpredictable weather, and make the most of the moment.
  • Appreciation of Public Spaces: Dîner en Blanc often takes place in public spaces that are transformed into elegant dining settings for one night. This highlights the potential of public spaces and encourages people to appreciate and utilize them in creative ways.
  • Celebration of Life: Some participants see Dîner en Blanc as a celebration of life, a way to break away from daily routines and enjoy a magical evening filled with music, dancing, and the company of friends and fellow diners.

In essence, Dîner en Blanc is about creating a memorable and enchanting experience that combines elegance, outdoor dining, culinary creativity, and community building. It’s a celebration of life’s simple pleasures and the beauty of coming together with others to share in a unique and joyful experience.

Why does Dîner en Blanc cost money if I have to bring my own food?

Dîner en Blanc events typically charge a fee for participants, even though attendees are required to bring their own food and dining supplies.

There are several reasons why Dîner en Blanc events have a cost associated with them:

  • Event Logistics: Organizing a Dîner en Blanc event involves a considerable amount of logistical planning and coordination. This includes securing a suitable and often iconic location, obtaining permits, arranging for transportation to the secret location, and ensuring the event runs smoothly. The registration fee helps cover these logistical expenses.
  • Decor and Entertainment: Dîner en Blanc events often feature entertainment, music, and decorations to enhance the overall experience. These elements are typically funded through the registration fees to create a more memorable and enjoyable evening.
  • Security and Safety: Ensuring the safety and security of participants is a priority for Dîner en Blanc organizers. The registration fee may help cover security personnel and emergency services, if needed, to ensure the well-being of attendees.
  • Organization and Support: Dîner en Blanc events are organized by local teams of volunteers who dedicate their time and effort to planning and executing the event. The registration fees can help compensate these volunteers for their work and contribute to the sustainability of the event.
  • Quality Control: Charging a fee helps control the number of participants and ensures that attendees are committed to the event. This helps maintain the elegant and exclusive atmosphere that Dîner en Blanc is known for.
  • Amenities and Services: Some Dîner en Blanc events may provide amenities such as restroom facilities, water stations, or other services to enhance the comfort and convenience of attendees. These amenities may be funded through the registration fees.
  • Support for Future Events: Revenue generated from registration fees can also be used to support future Dîner en Blanc events and promote the growth of the tradition.

It’s important to note that the specific costs associated with attending Dîner en Blanc may vary from one event to another and from one city to another. The registration fee is meant to cover the expenses related to organizing and hosting the event while ensuring that participants have a high-quality and enjoyable experience. While participants do bring their own food and table settings, the event’s unique atmosphere and logistics contribute to the overall value and appeal of the experience.

This blog was published by Nazmiyal Rugs located in the heart of Manhattan New York City NY.

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