Host a Fall Farm-to-Table Dinner Party

Celebrate fall's bounty amidst the season's brightest foliage with our step-by-step instructions for throwing an autumn farm-to-table dinner party.

Rustic Fall Table Setting With a View

Rustic Table Setting for Outdoor Fall Entertaining

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Jason Kisner, Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Fall is the ideal time of year for alfresco entertaining: It's cool enough to enjoy the outdoors comfortably, and changing leaves offer up a veritable kaleidoscope of color. This autumn, invite friends and family to an outdoor celebration of the season, complete with farm-to-table recipes, rustic DIY table decorations and step-by-step instructions to make your party shine.

Find the Right Location

An outdoor party designed to let guests take in the fall color needs a location where leaves are on full display. Selecting the location should be first on your list — even before the invitations — as fall-perfect destinations typically book up quickly as leaves reach their peak.

We chose The Swag Country Inn in Waynesville, N.C., for our fall dinner party. Located atop a 5,000-foot ridge about 50 minutes west of Asheville, the inn offers unparalleled views of mountain ranges in the adjacent Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Even if you plan to host this party in your own backyard, you'll need to time the event when leaves will be at their peak. Refer to local weather websites (and your memory) for the best date.

Celebrate Fall's Bounty in the Smoky Mountains

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Fall at 5,000 Feet

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

A Hikers' Paradise

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Peaking Foliage

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Gooseberry Knob

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Views for Miles

© 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Fall at Its Best

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

See the Sunrise

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Garden to Table

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Glorious Fall Blooms

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Liz Gray View original photo.

Rustic Charm

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Welcome to The Swag!

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

The Table Decor

Draw inspiration from the season's flowers, plants and foilage to create a casual table setting perfect for dining alfresco. Discover how we mixed DIY projects with vintage finds to create a rustic-chic look.

Rustic Fall Table Setting Ideas for Outdoor Celebrations

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Entertain Alfresco

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Freshly-Cut Flowers

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Butternut Squash Vases

Cabbage Patch

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Non-Traditional Planter

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Paint Sticks Turned Table Runner

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Simple Settings

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Dressed-Up Paper Runners

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Watercolor Accents

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Mix-and-Match Napkins

© 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Mini Succulent Planters

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Decorative Gourds (and Pumpkins)

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Rustic Chic

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

The Food

Recipes full of fall's freshest produce are the way to go here. Visit your local farmers' market for inspiration. Don't limit your purchases to vegetables; local, pasture-raised meats, baked goods, jams and honey can also make seasonally- and geographically-appropriate additions to your meal.

We asked The Swag's chef, Ronnie Potter-Bowers, to create an ideal fall menu at the resort, including a soup, salad, entree and dessert. Get his exclusive recipes right here.

Fall Farm-to-Table Recipes

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Roasted Beet Salad With Goat Cheese and Arugula

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Fall Vegetable Soup

2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Pork Roast With Apple Tart and Cider Sauce

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Orange-Cranberry Bread Pudding With Salted Caramel Sauce

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner

Fall Flowers and Gourds Decorate Table

Farm-To-Table Party

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  1. autumn

Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Jason Kisner View original photo.

Jason Kisner, Copyright 2013, HGTV/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

The Drinks

When searching for spirits, think local, local, local. Is there a winery near your event space that can help you pair wines with local produce? For beer lovers, a sampling from regional breweries might be more appropriate. Utilize local distilleries to give that extra-special touch to before or after-dinner drinks. Then sit back, enjoy the view and raise a glass to a delicious evening!

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