A spotted affair with a menu inspired by the English countryside
The Rose Table has gone to the dogs! For my nineteenth Disney Dinner, we’re heading into the English countryside for a dog-gone cute dinner party inspired by the 1961 film. It’s really such a darling movie. Rodger and Anita are basically couples goals (*ahem*, why have neither of my dogs staged a meet cute to get me together with the love of my life?!) and Pongo and Perdita are probably the best Disney parents there are! Plus, the movie gave us one of the all-time best villains: Cruella DeVil.
“I’m hungry, mother, I’m hungry!”
This was a particularly sentimental dinner for me because I’m such a dog lover. I decided to celebrate my Cavalier King Charles Spaniels with this dinner in true Rodger and Anita style.
I was inspired by Rodger and Anita’s cozy London home for the dining room decor. They have tons and tons of photos of their dogs on the walls, so I decorated the room with framed photos of all of the dogs I’ve loved (Elkia, Ayla, Luke, Gabby, and Henry). I hung a collage of Gabby (my beloved, sassy Cavalier who passed away in 2019) and Henry (the sweetest boy in the world who is snoozing right next to me as I type this) in the corner next to framed Cruella DeVil sheet music, since Rodger writes the song during the movie and their house has tons of sheet music all over. I kept my main park bench painting that always hangs in my dining room (when I’m not doing parties that is!) because Rodger and Anita’s meet cute involves a park bench.
“Look, Anita! Puppies everywhere!”
I wrote “I’m hungry, mother” on the chalkboard – one of the puppies’ most relatable lines.
I styled the side table with a rustic galvanized metal bucket full of flowers, a portrait of Henry, a whimsical sign (depicting my forever mood), and a black and white “Bone Appetite” dish full of homemade Kanine Krunchies, dog treats for my guests to take home to their pets.
This is one of my favorite Disney Dinners tables to date! The show-stopping Dalmatian print tablecloth was just too perfect. It really stole the show. This is also one of my simplest tables to date, adorned only with two fairly tall floral arrangements and taper candles (which my mom insisted on for a British theme).
Color-wise, I definitely think black, white, and red when it comes to a 101 Dalmatians party. I used red roses, white hydrangeas, and red alstroemeria. (I also included baby’s breath in the side table arrangement, because the tiny blooms made me think of polka dots.) I used two vases to symbolize Pongo and Perdita. Most notably, I dressed the vases up with Henry and Gabby’s collars to drive home our dog theme.
The Place Setting
This is a rare use of my china! I wanted stark white plates plus my china happens to have dots on the rim, perfect for our theme. Each guest had a little street lamp place card, first seen at Disney Dinners: Mary Poppins Returns (also a London theme).
I tied red napkins with polka dot ribbon adorned with custom Rose Table dog tags. I thought that would be a fun keepsake for my guests to put on a keychain.
Irene actually decided to wear her ribbon and dog tag as a choker. I can’t believe it fit around her neck! Look how darling it looks:
“Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil
If she doesn’t scare you
No evil thing will”
For my Cruella look, I chose a black maxi dress, red high heels, long red gloves, a faux fur capelet, and I let my hair be its wild wavy self. Huge thank you to David and Carolyn for letting me borrow their killer black and white classic car for a fun little Cruella shoot!
My friends always bring it fashion-wise! And I have to note that Jason and Rebecca Disney bounded as Rodger and Anita. Jason voices my dog Henry in the intro of this episode and Rebecca sang “When Will My Life Begin” in my Disney Dinners: Tangled episode.
“He was a bloomin’ hero, ma’am! A bloomin’ hero!” – Nanny
When I heard Nanny call Rodger a “bloomin’ hero,” I knew the name of our 101 Dalmatians cocktail. This is inspired by a Pimm’s cup, but it’s a bit stronger and has American lemonade instead of sparkling water (British lemonade). I made a pitcher and filled it with a comical amount of strawberries, orange slices, and cucumber slices, then garnished individual drinks with English mint from my garden. I’m proud to say that even my guests who don’t really drink LOVED this easy cocktail. Get the recipe for the Bloomin’ Hero here.
We drank the Bloomin’ Hero with our first course, then switched to wine for dinner (per usual). I served Kuhlman Cellars’ Sauvignon Blanc with main course.
Pongo and Perdita Salad with Dog Bone Crackers
I served a simple salad with blueberries (to symbolize Dalmatian spots) and maple vinaigrette (very cozy countryside, I thought) to start topped with the most amazing Asiago thyme crackers made with herbs from my garden. They’re so buttery and cheesy. Get the recipe for the salad here and the crackers here.
101 Dalmatians Pasta with Frying Pan Chicken and Rainbow Roasted Carrots
I wanted the main dish to have black Dalmatian spots, so I served an incredible pasta dish with black sesame seeds. The pasta has caramelized leeks, which I felt was very appropriate for our English countryside setting. For the first time ever, I served dishes from two other Disney Dinners: Frying Pan Chicken from Disney Dinners: Tangled and Rainbow Roasted Carrots from Disney Dinners: Frozen. The dishes went together so well and very much felt like we popped into someone’s farmhouse for dinner on our way to rescue fifteen puppies. Get the pasta recipe here.
A trifle, dahling! Trifles are so very English and serving it in a martini glass felt so very Cruella. This devil’s food cake trifle – or should I say DeVil’s Food Cake Trifle – has whipped cream cheese layered with dark chocolate cake crumbs and sugared strawberries. It’s a fantastic, totally make-ahead dessert! Get the recipe here.
The Dog Treats
As a fun little bonus, I baked homemade Kanine Krunchies inspired by the dog treat commercial on TV featured in the movie. Made with peanut butter and pumpkin purée (I used my homemade fairytale pumpkin purée because I had some in the freezer), these treats smell delicious and are pretty healthy for dogs! Henry is absolutely obsessed with them. He even licks the carpet where the treat was when he’s finished. Get the recipe here.
Want to see more? Watch the 101 Dalmatians episode of The Rose Table:
Thanks for reading! Binge watch all of my Disney Dinners here.
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