Clockwise from upper left: Colour Maisch prepares a wrapper for spring rolls; the kitchen island doubled as a buffet from which guests filled their bento boxes; Maisch and Lortsher crusted a whole sea bass from Aquarious Seafood Market and served it as a main course; patterned napkins added character and color to the dark dining table.
U TA H S T Y L E A N D D E S I G N . C O M
“There was a time when the hostess had to do everything, but the whole kinfolk, gather-around approach has changed things,” Lortsher says. Today, guests often contribute, easing the work, cost and stress of throwing a party. Hired help also lightens the load. Maisch and Lortsher decided on a casual gathering with guests participating and supplementing the spread with agreed-upon dishes and take-out fare. “You have to manage the offerings to avoid redundancy and people bringing similar things,” Maisch says. Partygoers ordered drinks from Manning, made spring rolls together, plated bento boxes buffet-style and dined informally throughout the evening. “It’s not potluck. It’s planned participation where friends naturally want to take part,” Lortsher says.
Open spaces, modern furnishings and soft light flowing through floor-to-ceiling windows made the 3,300-squarefoot Broadway Loft the ideal spot to host the early evening get-together. “During winter, it’s nice avoiding cold and dark when going out,” says Lortsher. An open kitchen’s island served as a high-style prep and serving station for the fare while a nearby counter performed as the bar. The loft’s open floor plan ideally suited the small group allowing guests to wander, socialize and nosh at their leisure. Some drank and dined in the hip seating area while others gathered at the dining table where flickering candles, flower arrangements and colorful linens elevated the loft’s chic ambiance.