If you were lucky enough to have found the one you love and promised to make it official over the holidays or Valentine’s Day, you might be trying to navigate the complexities of wedding planning. When it comes to wedding catering, the key is knowing how to pace the food at your wedding to make sure you don’t have people sitting around waiting, overindulging on an empty stomach, or being served cold food that isn’t very tasty. Timing is everything when it comes to your wedding reception, especially the menu and the food being served. These are just some tips about how to pace the food served at your wedding for maximum enjoyment!

Most Important! Choose the Right Caterer

I am not trying to brag, but I am going to a little bit. If you want to have the right pace of food served at your wedding, the very first step is to hire a caterer who has experience. After doing hundreds of weddings over the years, I have not only worked out the kinks, but my expertise is your asset. It is important to find someone to cater to your wedding who understands timing and how to keep people’s stomach’s happy… and I do!

To Appetize or Not to Appetize?

Many of my couples ask if appetizers are necessary. Although it depends on the crowd and the affair, if you are going to have a cocktail hour, it is best to serve light food so that people don’t end up over-indulging. Not only will giving your guests something to eat help absorb the alcohol they are drinking; it will help to slow them down. The additional cost of putting out a food tray or having hors d’oeuvres is well worth taming your guests’ consumption.

Announce the Meal and Limit the Time-Window

Regardless if you choose to have a buffet-style wedding or a plated dinner, make sure that everyone eats at the same time. Have the band of the DJ announce to let everyone know that the food is ready and that it is time to fill up. Having food sitting around for the entire night is never a good idea. Ideally, you want to serve food to your guests for no more than an hour. So calling attention to the fact that it is both ready and limited is important. Otherwise, you run the risk of people losing their time-window and forgetting to eat, or eating later while they should be up and dancing. 

Keep Cake Cutting Behind the Scenes

It used to be customary to make a big deal out of cutting the cake. And although it is a nice touch to make a toast and show the cake off, don’t hold people captive by having another interruption and making them sit still and watch. Have a private cake cutting party on your own behind the scenes and get plenty of pictures. After all, the cutting is really about the two of you taking time from the busy night to reconnect before you have to go back to entertaining the masses.

Serve Late-Night Munchies

If you are having a long reception, it is a good idea to plan to feed people later on in the evening. A late-night snack is just as important as a pre-dinner appetizer. It will not only give people their second wind to dance the night away; it will help to keep people going for the action. 

Forego the Choice

RSVPing tends to get a little worse with every generation. If you send out cards for people to choose fish or meat, it can become a nightmare. It is difficult enough to get people to put a reply card in the mail to tell you whether they are attending, don’t put additional stress on yourself by asking them to choose their meal. As a wedding caterer, I can tell you what most people will like. And we can also work together to ensure that there is a little something on the menu for even the pickiest eater in the crowd.

Don’t focus entirely on the menu selection and fail to throw enough time into figuring out how to pace the food served at your wedding. Planning a wedding can be stressful and overwhelming, but not if you find the right people to give you a hand. I have been doing this for a very long time and can help you make your wedding menu a breeze to organize. Contact the Deft Chef today to save the date for your upcoming wedding!

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