How to Make your Wedding Menus Fresh and Fun
A fabulous wedding has the best catering options, the top trends in stations, fresh and healthy menu options, elaborate station displays, and delicious food that guests love and rave about for long after the wedding. You could choose the most beautiful reception venue, but if the food isn’t delicious and unique, the wedding itself will be disappointing to all.
It seems like a lot of pressure to put on yourselves about choosing the best wedding menu, but you’ll have plenty of help from the top wedding catering manager who will work with you to arrange the perfect collection of cocktail party stations and sit-down dinner menu choices, according to the dishes you both love. Here’s how to build your menu to co-create with your catering team a fresh and fun menu:
- You’ll view your wedding venue’s menu selections in each of their menu packages, to familiarize yourselves with the kinds of stations, entrees and sides that are available. Many brides and grooms get inspired by the surprises they find on these menus that the top chefs at the best wedding venues in New Jersey have expertly created.
- You’ll create a priority list of the wedding menu options that you absolutely must have at your cocktail party and reception, from a raw bar to a Mediterranean station to a gluten-free station, Italian menu specialties, seasonal wedding menu options and more. If you’re vegetarian, you can talk with your catering manager about incorporating a number of vegetarian options in your wedding menu, but also offering meat and seafood dishes for the rest of your guests.
- One way to make your wedding menu fresh and fun is to plan stations that feature food from your love story, such as seafood that reminds you of when you first met at the New Jersey shore, and the dishes you ordered on your first date. You can then share this fun part of your love story with your guests by displaying a sign at your seafood bar, letting guests know that this station was inspired by your first sunset lobster dinner date.
- Another way to make your menu fresh and fun is to include healthier, lighter fare on your menu, but have your chefs create delicious, gourmet dipping sauces to add some spice, sweetness and original tastes to foods that guests can enjoy without guilt or greasy hands.
- Having attendants at your stations always makes the cocktail hour of reception buffet dinner fresh and fun for guests, since the attendants might be chefs preparing custom dishes, showing off their culinary skills, and putting on a show for guests in a great, interactive food presentation.
- Give your stations or dinner entrees a signature name, just like your signature wedding drinks. The chicken entrée that’s already impressive in its taste and presentation will be even more delightful for guests when your menu card says that it’s named after the couple who first introduced you: Charles Chicken is then a tribute to your friends, Jeff and Mary Charles, who thought you’d be perfect together.
- Think about what you’ve seen often on other wedding couples’ menus, and decide if you love the classics, or if you want to offer dishes that your guests haven’t seen very often, if ever before. Your chefs can then give your menu options a culinary twist to make them fresher, surprising, maybe with a bit of cultural or regional spice or extra spiciness.
- Theme your cocktail party, such as having all or mostly Italian- or Indian-inspired stations, for instance, and then go classic and more diverse with your dinner menu. And pair cultural drinks to match your stations.
- Ask your catering manager to help you tailor the latest wedding food trends to your wedding’s season and style, and let the experts introduce you to fabulous, fresh and fun menu option combinations.