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The trend of potlucks is making its way from the United States to Italy, making it fashionable here to ask guests to bring multi-ethnic dishes. It makes for a truly globalized night out.

Every time we get an invitation to dinner, panic sets in. What can we bring? A bunch of flowers, a bottle of wine, or a knick-knack for the house? And if we’re the ones hosting it, where to start?

The United States is bringing a new trend to Italy that makes us discard many of our old habits and opens up vast new possibilities.

For potlucks in Italy, there’s just one rule: each guest brings an ethnic specialty they made at home. The secret to its success, whether a dinner, a picnic in the park, or even a reception is its casual, fun nature. In the United States, where it is particularly popular, they call them “potluck parties”. A feast for the eyes and taste buds, everyone takes an active part in their success. If you want to host a dinner, go ahead and try it out. Here are some tips for a perfect potluck. Suggest a theme that can inspire your guests’ dishes and assign responsibilities, like drinks, first courses or desserts. Keep the most important dish for yourself and have a back-up plan in case of last-minute defections. Don’t forget that bringing dishes, cups, and cutlery is also up to you. This will let you deck the table how you want, following the potluck theme. These simple steps will help you put on a real event that is fun, multi-ethnic and inspires your friends’ creativity and lightens the workload of the hosts.

Go ahead and make up your guest list and let your imagination loose.