The Wedding Planner Magazine

Richmond 1-2

A magazine highlighting the premiere wedding professionals in Charlottesville, Virginia and surrounding areas. Includes interviews, real weddings and numerous articles written by local and professional wedding planners.

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Page 29 of 89

PLAN YOUR WEDDING Food Is Flow Your Menu P lanning a menu for your wedding can seem like daunt- ing task because of the large number of people you're feeding and all their different tastes. When you determine the flow and atmosphere that you want to create, you'll have a better idea of the foods that will work in that setting. How do we do that? The first step is to choose your style of service. Some of the most common styles are: Buffet, Family Style, Plated and Chef Stations. Each has their pros and cons, but what differentiates them is the atmosphere and flow they bring to your reception. If you want something more relaxed and casual, a buffet or chef stations is the way to go. Chef stations takes the buffet to another level by adding an in- teractive element, where your guests will get to watch chefs prepare food to order. These two service styles will give your wedding reception a less structured flow and more relaxed atmosphere where guests can eat when they choose and feel free to mingle with friends and family. On the contrary, if you're looking for a more formal reception, a plated or family style meal is for you. Once you've chosen a service style, it's time to build the menu! Start with your likes and dislikes. Tell your caterer what you do and don't want on the menu. If you're having trouble with ideas,.one of the best sources is restaurants. Take pictures of the menu and presentation as inspiration for your caterer to create something fantastic for you. Also, take into account the season of your wedding. You want to include the freshest ingredients possible, which is especially important for produce! Although advances in shipping and storage have made produce available practically year round, most vegetables simply taste better when they are in season. There are many great online resources that can give you an idea of what will be most fresh when it's time for your wed- ding. The season of your wedding will also give you an idea of how light or heavy the menu should be. That doesn't mean you can't have a mac & cheese bar in July! (Who doesn't love mac & cheese?) Just make sure that the rest of the menu is well rounded and includes some lighter, more fresh options. On a day that can be filled with some wedding jitters and a few surprises, one that thing that will always remain true is: people follow food and drink. As you work with your caterer, make that your menu planning mantra. While brainstorming ideas for food, keep in mind the flow and atmosphere that you want your big day to have. Are you going for a traditional and formal reception? Do you want your reception to feel more casual? Maybe somewhere in between? Whatever you decide, let that be what guides you in creating a menu that's just as unique and special as your love story. by Tory Gilliam Catering & Events Producer, MOSIAC Catering & Events Don Mears Photography Hayes & Fisk Photography Abigail Volkmann Photography

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