Barack Obama hosted his final state dinner on Tuesday, welcoming the Italian prime minister, Matteo Renzi to the White House. However, all eyes were on Michelle Obama, who slayed the event in a rose gold Atelier Versace chain mail gown.
“Thank you, Michelle, for all the things you have done for America and for the world, and especially, for empowering and inspiring women everywhere.” Italian designer Donatella Versace wrote on Instagram.
The dinner took place inside a luxurious tent. It featured cream-colored drapes, gorgeous flower arrangements and tall crystal candelabras at each table. There were also crystal chandeliers hanging from the tent’s ceiling that also had green vines draped around them.
Celebrity chef Mario Batali was in charge of curating the big night’s menu. It was designed to showcase traditional Italian dishes that are familiar to American. Chef’s dishes featured a lot of vegetables from the White House Kitchen Garden.
Lucky attendees enjoyed agnolotti with butter and sage, warm butternut squash salad, beef braciole with horseradish gremolata and green apple crostata with thyme caramel for dessert.
“If there’s one thing that I’m not going to sleep well about tonight, it’s only going to be the hot plates. I think I’ll be shaking in my orange crocs tomorrow when it’s about a half-hour before service.” – Mario Batali said Monday at the White House.
The large, 380-plus guest list was mostly aides and politicos who have been with the administration since the early days. However, there were also musicians like James Taylor, Jerry Seinfeld, Frank Ocean and Chance the Rapper .
At the front of the tent was the stage where the president and Renzi gave their speeches. After the elaborate meal Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton performed their hit single “Go Ahead and Break My Heart.”
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) October 19, 2016
State dinners are a longstanding presidential tradition to host international heads of state in the US. Obama has held 13 state dinners during nearly eight years in office.