Joe Minton hosting a party. Cody Ulrich

Holidays

How an Iconic Dallas Designer Creates the Perfect Christmas Brunch

Joe Minton sets a timeless table in Forth Worth.

For a happy feeling that nothing in the world can buy, iconic designer Joe Minton let’s us take a page out of his holiday-hosting handbook.

 

SQUEEZE IN.
When Minton has people over to his Fort Worth home, he typically hosts in the dining room. “It’s not a very large room, and it’s all bookcases, so it doubles as a library,” he says. “I have had 11 people squeezed around that table. It’s really more fun than being stretched out. In my previous home, people only talked to the person right next to them. At this table, everyone can talk to each other.”

DO BRUNCH.
There are so many holiday dinners on the calendar. Why not do something different? “It’s fun to just have a huge breakfast,” Minton says. “I’ve done it with 11 people in that dining room with a huge amount of scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, biscuits, and fresh orange juice. It’s really easy to do.”

CHEAT A LITTLE. 
If you are hosting a holiday dinner, Minton has a reliable (and surprising) favorite: chicken pot pies from Boston Market. “You don’t have to have much help,” he says. “One person can serve, and you have no cooking.”

KEEP YOUR PLACE CARDS.
“I save place cards because I have so many repeat guests,” he says. “I do it on a bare table with no placemats or tablecloth. You can get everything closer together without it looking funny.” Minton likes to serve on his traditional Mason’s Ironstone china that’s dark red, cobalt blue, white, and gold. “To me, it looks Christmassy,” he says. “It’s good any time of the year, but especially in the winter.”

GO INSTRUMENTAL.
Minton prefers no background music for his regular dinner parties, opting to let his guests chat in the cozy, intimate space. But for the holidays, he will spring for a little instrumental Christmas music that still won’t disrupt conversation.

TAKE A WHIFF.
Minton sprays Rigaud “Cypres” room spray and then lights a candle in the same scent prior to party time.

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