As the evenings get longer and warmer, start thinking about planning spring and summer dinner parties that offer food for thought. Prepping an organic, locally sourced feast is a great way to get your dinner guests to enjoy a sustainable meal, but it’s also a green conversation starter, sparking lots of talk about food politics , green agricultural practices and even just the joy of food shopping at farmers market.
Pair your food with an equally conscious list of dinner party amenities. We’ve rounded up a few key items that will help you and your guests give back while enjoying each others’ company.
For those who enjoying sipping delicious, complex grape, having a few good bottles of wine on hand is a bonus for any successful dinner soiree, and Cellar Thief  provides an excellent resource for finding the perfect bottle of vino while at the same time helping to bring clean water to those in need. For every bottle of wine sold, Cellar Thief works with charity : water  to donate 100 days’ worth of clean water, and because they’re selling wines at a steal of a price, when there are only five cases left of a certain wine, if a customer buys all of them they’ll donate an additional 500 days’ worth of clean drinking water.
Need some help creating a menu based around your wines? Check out our 10 Green Wine and Food Pairings  guide.
Plates and Glasses
Once you’ve planned the menu, you’ll need something to serve the food on and pour the drinks into. If you’re in need of a new table setting, Plates with Purpose  is a creative option. The company produces a series of custom designed plates each representing a non-profit to which a percent of proceeds are donated. For drinks, you can go the recycled glass route. Green Glass Company  has a variety of options that will not only give your table a distinct look, but also make for great parting gifts for your guests.
Fresh fruit is always a simple, yet delicious option for dessert, especially when paired with a good dark chocolate. The staple of many chocolate lovers, Endangered Species Chocolate  comes in a variety of milk and dark varieties and 10 percent of net profits are donated to support species, habitat and humanity.
To maintain a romantic and inviting dinner party ambiance, lit candles are a must. But for the eco-friendly dinner party, avoid traditional candles made from paraffin, which is made from petroleum and releases harmful carcinogens when burned. Instead, choose beeswax or soy candles to light your table.
Beeswax is a completely renewable resource, and supporting smaller producers of beeswax candles also means that you’re helping the threatened bee population. Bluecorn Naturals  sells both beeswax and soy candles, and at Candle Bee Farm  you can purchase a variety of beeswax candles from a company that donates a percent of sales to non-profits, benefiting children and a variety of nature and wildlife causes.
Originally published on EcoSalon