15th January 2021
Top 5 Tips for choosing your Wedding Feast!
Hello all you happy couples!
Although these are strange times, we have been inundated with new enquiries and people asking about wedding menus and how to choose the right feast for them.
Food isn’t always the first thing you think about when you get engaged... but it’s a pretty big thing! I mean to be perfectly honest I don’t need an excuse to think about food as I bloody love it and luckily I married a chef! Great for experiencing some amazing dishes, but not so great for your waistline!
Did you know that food falls into the top 3 things your guests will remember at your wedding.
- The Venue
- Outfits - The Dress or Suit
- The Food
So it’s not surprising that wedding catering has come a long way in the last 10 years and started to follow restaurant trends rather than the traditional sit down meal.
When we got married almost 7 years ago we really struggled to find a caterer to create the menu that we wanted. We searched high and low! Back then sharing feasts hadn’t really made their entry into the world of weddings in Yorkshire.
We were just in the early days of Baba Ganoush and were mainly doing private dining, but we decided to bite the bullet and jumped head first into catering our own wedding!!! It was a bit crazy if I am honest! But people still talk about the amazing Yorkshire / Mediterranean sharing feast we had.
Our wedding cheesecake was provided by the fantastic Love Cheese, breads from Haxby Bakers, pies and scotch eggs from The York Pie Company, all our meats from M&K Butchers, wines from Geoff Walker and Field and Fawcett. We even had a Great Wedding Bake Off, where all our nearest and dearest competed with family recipes for the honour of winning a golden spoon! It was a wonderful day! But we also learnt a lot in the process. So I thought I’d put together my top 5 tips for designing your wedding feast....
1. Find the right catering team!
Obviously we would love it to be us haha! But we also know there are a whole range of different catering styles out there too. We are pretty bespoke at Baba but there are other amazing caterers that specialise in specific cuisines.
Always meet with your caterer first! Go to their kitchens - take a good look round and speak to the staff. We designed our kitchen and client tasting area in a way that means clients have a chance to see our kitchens and meet the team. As a working kitchen we don’t hide anything and I think that’s important! You are going to be spending a lot of time communicating with your caterer so it's important you are on the same wavelength and share the same vision for your day.
Also don’t restrict yourself to one caterer if you want a different vibe between day and night! Yes we would love to be with you all day but if you want an Algerian Street Food stall we know some wonderful guys in industry (in particular Los Moros! Who makes the best merguez sausage) who would smash it and be authentic about it too!
2. Make a list!
Once you have decided on your catering team - write down three words you want your day to be… a few examples below:
I find by asking couples this narrows down the style / vibe they are going for and helps them and us to focus on what works well within these styles. For example our wedding was…
RUSTIC / RELAXED / FUN
You may already have an idea in mind of the style of food but a list is a good way to gather thoughts down…
- Favourite foods
- Favourite restaurants
- Food dislikes
- Season you are getting married in
*Just a quick note on seasonality.. This is so important to us as we really like to use local producers where we can! We had a bride that really wanted a strawberry dessert in December (pink to go with her colour theme) ... obviously not seasonal for this country at that time. We managed to persuade them to try a forced rhubarb dessert and they absolutely loved it! Your caterers should be able to help steer you in good directions when it comes to produce available at the time of your wedding.
- Do you want canapés - if so would you like traditional or quirky or even a roaming deli style
- Would you like a starter or to go heavier on drinks reception. If you would like a stater would you like plated or more sharing style.
- Is fine dining your thing for mains or again would you like more relaxed sharing dining.
- Dessert - yum! Do you want a plate to yourself that you don’t have to share? Can’t choose just one dessert - then maybe think about a duo or trio. Want a show-stopping focal point - Dessert Table is the way forward!
- Evening Food - think about how many extra guests you are inviting in the evening and compare that to how much you have fed your day guests. Do you need a full on feats or just a nibble of something.
3. Your Menu Tasting
Always make sure your caterer offers a pre tasting of your menu! And try where you can to do this in the same season you will marry so you can see what the produce will really be like.
We offer a complimentary tasting for up to 4 guests so you can come with 2 other people to bounce ideas off! Remember that it is a tasting and that when it comes to doing sharing feasts your may not get the full effect at your tasting due to catering for just 2/4 guests. Ask for photos of previous works if that’s the case. We do up to 4 in house photo shoots a year with the lovely Olivia Brabbs (who basically is now part of our Baba family) to ensure clients can see up to date layouts and styles of new menus and get an idea of full presentation!
Don’t be afraid to tell your caterer about something you aren’t keen on. A good chef will welcome feedback. At the end of the day your caterers are there to make your food bespoke and special to you. The tasting is the perfect opportunity to iron out any kinks before the big day!
4. Make a spreadsheet!
We highly recommend making a spreadsheet of potential guests prior to choosing food. This means that you can jot down all your guests including any children, pregnant friends, vegetarians, vegans and guests with dietary requirements. This way you have all the information in one place and can discuss with your catering team as to what suits those guests needs and fits in with your theme / style. Sorting this out early takes away the last minute stress of worrying and also means that all your guests are fed a tasty meal and are not just an afterthought!
It is always great when friends and family want to help! A little guidance can be very much appreciated! But don’t let people’s opinions change what you want from your day! That’s why we stress the importance of your 3 WORDS making a list (point no2) so that you have a solid foundation to keep referencing and keeping you true to your dream wedding!
So that’s it - my top 5! If you have any questions or would like to speak to us further about food just let us know!