Neil Patrick Harris is proud of his husband, David Burtka.
"You are a multihyphenate in the most specific ways," the gay How I Met Your Mother actor glowed at the Tuesday launch event of his partner's new book, Life Is a Party: Deliciously Doable Recipes to Make Every Day a Celebration. Addressing the crowd, Harris praised Burtka for his ability "to take all of the things you do so well and instill it into a book that I think other people will enjoy."
Burtka — who had worked with Harris as an actor on Mother — is a chef trained at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts. Additionally, he owns a catering company, Gourmet M. D.
Life Is a Party is a collection of these skills and experiences. It lists over 100 recipes. (Harris tested many of them, he promised the gathering; Burtka cited the porcini-rubbed ribeye steak as his favorite.) But the book is also a kind of visual memoir.
Photographs show various themed parties with family members and friends over the course of a year, making it a unique glimpse — and taste — of the life of one of the world's most famous rainbow families. Harris and Burtka met in 2004, married in 2014, and are raising twins, Harper and Gideon. In many ways, they are role models for many members of the LGBTQ community who are also seeking out the American Dream.
At the party, Harris reflected on the power of the art of entertaining — and the importance of food and friends to leading a happy life. "Parties that don’t have to be big and gigantic — they just have to be memorable," asserted Harris. He and Burtka live in New York City, but they had traveled to and assembled friends in Los Angeles for such a memorable occasion.
The crowd included celebrities like Good Girls' Christina Hendricks — glowing in a pear-themed dress — and RuPaul's Drag Race's Willam in full drag and a blue bouffant. But there were also a few dozen nonfamous friends and colleagues there to help Burtka celebrate. Chef Nancy Silverton — a winner of the prestigious James Beard Award — had opened the doors of Osteria Mozza for the event and offered up a rich spread of burrata, meats, and desserts.
Harris, in the conclusion of his remarks, marveled at Burtka's accomplishment as well as the journey of their shared life together. "It’s so impressive to see you as a grown-up man do something you’re so legitimately passionate about," said Harris.
"How you represent your life, and therefore our lives, is very inspiring as your husband and just as a person. I think this book deserves to be in the world right now."
The crowd cheered and raised their glasses. And then the couple embraced.