Don't just dress smart: Tools and gadgets for connected dinner party
Having guests? Go high tech!
Want to host the perfect dinner party? Invite technology as the guest of honour and make it a night to remember.
Here are some fun and futuristic gadgets and games to help you as you host.
Set the scene
Wi-fi speakers / music streaming
Invest in some wi-fi speakers and you will be able to stream music that matches the theme of your evening.
You can even have some livelier beats in the dining room and play calming tunes in the kitchen while you’re still cooking.
Use a music streaming service such as Spotify or Apple music and you can curate your own playlist, or simply choose the mood and let your service play DJ for you.
Connected smart lights let you choose from a range of settings, brightness and colours.
You can impress your guests by setting the lights to flash on and off when it is time to sit down for dinner or even change the colour scheme to a conversation-starting ‘Tropical Twilight’ using the Philips Hue bulbs.
In the kitchen
This one might end up being more of a conversation starter than playing a major role in your evening, but an interesting talking piece is nothing to turn your nose up at when it comes to a social event.
Foodsniffer is a device designed to check the freshness of meat for you. Connecting with an app on your phone, the Foodsniffer can be used on pork, beef, chicken or fish in an effort to determine if it is past its use by date.
Simply hold the gadget close to the meat for 30 seconds and you will get a reading delivered to your phone. This device might seem excessive, but for those who don’t trust their own sense of smell it could be very handy indeed.
Connected food thermometers
Sick of wondering if the meat is done? Made from silicon and stainless steel, as well as some technical bits and pieces, there are two types of Range thermometers.
The first one, ‘Ember’ is designed to be stuck into your roasted, barbecued or grilled meat. The 'Aqua' has a rounded tip and can be used to check the temperature of soups, yoghurts or even your own homebrew.
These clever kitchen gadgets can be left in meat while it is cooking or can be inserted quickly to check a temperature.
They then communicate with an app on your iPhone or iPad, sending cute messages like “The cow says ‘I’m medium rare'”, allowing you to spend less time in the kitchen and more with your guests.
On the table
Inviting the boss over? Blow their mind with a state of the art connected wine decanter.
iSommelier promises to appeal to oenophiles (wine connoisseurs), by “opening up wine faster, softening tannins and preserving flavour, claiming to achieve what takes years of precise cellaring in just a few minutes thanks to a highly concentrated oxygen stream that removes impurities and moisture odours.”
Talk about high tech!
The iSommelier is designed with a touch panel and app compatibility as well as remote control functionality that allows you to choose between settings based on your wine drinking preferences.
Modern day parlour games have evolved somewhat. Make the most of your Apple TV or Chromecast by involving your guests with some fun and interactive games.
While a lot of trivia games are US based, SongPop speaks a much more universal language.
This music quiz asks up to six players to guess the names of the artists and titles behind popular songs, using an iPhone as a remote.
Originally a popular board game, Fibbage is silly and lots of fun. Players have to come up with a word to complete a sentence, using their own imagination.
Then, out of everyone’s answers, everybody has to try to guess the correct one (which is hidden in there too). You get bonus points if your fabricated answer is actually true!
This classic party game never gets old! The iPhone and iPad version flips it on its head, asking the entire team to act out words while just one person makes guesses.
Up to four teams can play and there are options for younger players.