Diner en Blanc

diner-en-blanc-3246White.  So much white.  I watched as they streamed off the buses in an orderly march towards the sea.  They came with chairs, tables, and picnic baskets or coolers.



Imperial Beach Pier


Apothic table where the sponsors partied.
Apothic Wines table where the sponsors dined.

Organization was remarkable as the empty beach was transformed into rows of ornately decorated rows of tables.  Reminds me of the symphony.




diner-en-blanc-3310After the 1st movement a flutter of white napkins signaled the 2nd movement and everybody began eating their picnic meals.


diner-en-blanc-3338The finale arrived with a sea of white covering the sand in front of the band for dancing.  I bore witness to the spectacle but my words cannot do justice to the experience.



It begins with registration on the Diner en Blanc website.  Some 1,200 lucky entrants are selected and hours before the event begins locations are given out where buses will drive you to the secret location of the actual event.  There is a sense of excitement and anticipation pondering the exact where and when of the Diner.



At the Diner en Blanc there is a sense of belonging and exclusivity being one of the many dressed in white.  Elegant.  Camaraderie.  It was an interesting experience being part of something greater than myself as throughout grade school I was the outsider.  Band played lots of tunes I liked.  Lights people brought twinkled in the night.  I can’t think of a better way to end summer and welcome the fall than to be a part of Diner en Blanc.  I wandered off into the darkness but my thoughts were white.


By Soo
Disclaimer:  I was a guest of Platform Media Group/Apothic Wines



It started out with just a few bus loads of people elegantly clad in white. Arms filled with food, drink, chairs, tables and loads of classy (white of course) table decorations. Each bus group had a large sign in the sand, directing them to their specific area along Imperial beach to set up. For those who choose not to bring their own food a catered dinner complete with water and or Apothic Wine could be found close by.





The band was already playing when we arrived, entertaining the 1,968 people who participated in this incredible event. So if your suitcase or wagon was hard to lug in the sand or your food got too heavy, you could just put them down for a bit, maybe have a glass of wine and enjoy the music!

An electric happiness just wound it’s way around everyone there and continued for the entire evening. 

Upon arriving I just had to walk around and check out the set up and scenery. The sun was setting and I wanted to capture it. While I was doing this several couples came up to me on the beach and asked what was going on. They seemed very interested in joining us! All except one couple whom carefully approached and gently asked, ‘is this a religious thing?’ obviously hoping not to offend. Once I stifled my giggle I informed them about this flash gathering. They too wanted to join!





More details including rules and attire can be found at; http://sandiego.dinerenblanc.info/the-world-s-most-elegant-picnic-celebrates-5-years-in-san-diego–2082 

The planning, care of detail, organization, knowledge of their craft all were vividly evident as I walked around observing the evening unfolding.

Once everyone arrived the napkin wave signaled start of dinner. We walked around trying to capture all the decorations and detail of this evening.

In 1988 Francois Pasquier, founder of  Diner en Blanc, invited a group of friends for dinner at Bois de Boulogne in Paris. They were asked to wear white at this outdoor event. Since then, this eye catching event has grown to over 7o cities and six continents. San Diego celebrated it’s 5th anniversary on October 6, 2016.  


In a world that’s filled with ‘no shoes, no shirt, who cares?’ attitude, it’s easy to appreciate the personification of a higher form of elegance achieved by this event. It’s such a joy to observe and indulge in this ingenious presentation of exquisite wine, fine food, lavish decoration, breathtaking dapper white formal suites paired with angelic flowing adorned white dresses. It was inspiring to see some women found another use for the wedding dress in their closet.



9 Replies to “Diner en Blanc”

  1. I’ve heard of this event and have been so curious about it! So you bring your own food/drinks and they provide the set up? I will have to check out the prices. It does look like a secret club with everyone wearing white 🙂 Beautiful pictures !

    1. You must bring every single thing you need for a picnic dinner including white chairs, a table, and white table cloth. I checked the website and it looks like it cost a bit under $50 you need to pay to attend.

      It was like being in a secret club! People commented on our attire everywhere we went in our white outfits!

      Thanks! It was lovely on the beach that night. 🙂

    2. Maggie Addleman says: Reply

      Why thank you Faye! I was using my new camera that evening!

  2. Cool event! Didn’t know this one was hard to get into! I wonder how far in advance they get selected to attend. I wonder if it was the same party my sis-in-law went to during a previous year. I don’t have anything to wear to something like this. But I’d shop to find something if I went =P

    1. Maggie Addleman says: Reply

      You’ll have to sign up for the next event! I got lucky, with only a day notice and found white dress pants and white blouse at Sears, just in time for the event. :>)

    2. You should sign up for next year. You also need to bring chairs and a table. It was a lot of fun being part of an exclusive club!

  3. AWESOME Post! The tables are beautifully decorated, is it decorated by the guest as well?

    1. Yes! All tables and decorations are brought by the guest. It’s your opportunity to create something awesome!

    2. Maggie Addleman says: Reply

      Wow thanks Mia! Each guest really put forth alot of effort into their table decorations. It was so fun just walking around and looking at everything!

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