There’s a lot to think about when organising a wedding. From the venue and flowers to the vows and the dress (we get the magnitude of this decision!), wedding planning can be a stressful and confusing experience. But if there’s one thing that sets weddings apart, it’s often the quality of the catering. So, how can you ensure a smooth-sailing catering experience, with food to ‘wow’ your guests?

As wedding aficionados, Let Them Eat has vast experience in the best and most effective way to organise wedding catering, and we’re eager to share our insights. If you’re planning a wedding, listen up! This article’s for you.

THE VENUE OFTEN DICTATES THE CATERING

These days, self-organised weddings at quirky locations are becoming increasingly popular. Beautiful locations such as Woodhouse Manor or the Woodville Town Hall, create memorable wedding experiences, but locations such as these, often require external catering assistance. This can be a good thing, as external catering is often cheaper than venues who offer high-priced catering packages. But the question remains, how should food be served?

From nibbles and platters to buffets and à la carte, there’s nothing we haven’t seen or tried. But from our experience, there’s one wedding catering style that we’d recommend above all others – it’s called the ‘family buffet.’

WHY WE LOVE A ‘FAMILY BUFFET’

The ‘family buffet’ consists of lots of little dishes of mains and sides put between small groups of people for them to help themselves. We find this is the most successful style of food service as it puts the selection and portion control into the hands of the guest. They get to taste a wide variety of dishes, but most importantly, it creates a communal eating ambience that promotes conversation, interaction and a memorable dining experience.

8 TIPS FOR WEDDING CATERING SUCCESS (WHAT WE’VE LEARNT FROM A DECADE OF WEDDINGS)

We’ve been at more weddings than you can shake a stick at, and these are our top tips to nail your wedding catering experience.

Tip #1: Make sure there’s plenty of food.

No one wants to be hungry, and with an open bar, a full belly will keep things sensible until after the speeches!

Tip #2: Make sure there’s plenty of staff.

There’s nothing worse than an understaffed event. It always leads to dissatisfaction. Make sure you have an experienced team on hand to do the leg work. This will ensure things run smoothly for your big day.

Tip #3: Allocate a key contact on the day that’s not yourself.

This person is the go-to person should staff have any questions. You don’t want to be concerned about parking on your wedding day – let someone else manage the logistics and problem-solve any issues that may arise.

Tip #4: Think though catering logistics.

Solving these questions will make your caterer’s life easier and reduce any logistical issues that may arise on the big day. Here are some key questions to resolve:

  • What equipment/linen etc is available at the venue?
  • Is there enough power/space at the venue?
  • How far do the staff have to go from the kitchen to the event and is it safe? (I have slipped on my butt on a gravely slope with arms full of dishes – yes, it happens)!
  • Who is doing the dishes and when?
  • Is there enough room on the tables for the food if it’s a ‘family style buffet’?
  • What is the timing of the event and catering? Here are a few key things to consider:
    • Is the caterer arriving during the wedding itself, or beforehand?
    • Is there enough time to put the food out and enough time to clear the dishes (and not during the speeches)?
    • Is there enough time for everyone to eat and have seconds?

HOW TO SELECT A CATERER (WINK, WINK, NUDGE NUDGE!)

Selecting the right caterer can be hard – especially as there’s so many to choose from in the market. But when it boils down to it, the most important catering consideration is the quality of the food. Here’s our top tips to ensure your wedding feast ticks all the boxes.

Tip #5: Think about dietary requirements or the type of cuisine you’d like to serve.

For example, Let Them Eat specialises in vegetarian or vegan wedding menus. From arancini ballsmushroom moussaka parcels and leek and gruyere tart, to pumpkin and red lentil lasagne, cauliflower au gratin, golden roast potatoes, and mouth-watering salads, who says our menu can’t be healthy but super delicious!

Tip #6: Book it in early.

Engaging a caterer early on enables you to discuss the finer points of your menu as well as address any catering challenges that may arise (see tip #4 for key questions to think about). It also takes the pressure off your wedding planning – another thing ticked off the list!

Tip #7: Do your research.

Check out the social channels of your caterer to get a feel for their food. For example, Let Them Eat’s social channels are filled with images of their delicious, wholesome food. This can help with menu selection and decision-making!

Tip #8: Come prepared.

It’s important to have a vision in mind for your menu and serving style. This will help the caterer to best meet your expectations and desires. When organising wedding catering, clear communication is key. We wish you every success with your impending nuptials!

Interested in Let Them Eat catering for your big day? Check out our catering website or contact us directly here.