Wedding Guides

What to Serve Before Your Reception

We’ve all been there–a really long wedding, and an even longer wait for the reception to begin. All the guests, yourself included, are so hungry that they opted to either hang out somewhere to eat before the reception starts, and you spend even more money on the wedding. And then, when you get to the reception, the tables have… nuts. Nacho chips with a bit of dip. What a way to start a night that should have been all about celebrating!

So what do you serve before the reception? It should be light fare, enough to not spoil anyone’s dinner, but hearty enough to please your guests and fill their stomachs before the real food comes out. Here are a few ideas:

1. Hors d’oeuvres.

– Think about serving crostinis piled with hearty, filling dips, pieces of meat (salmon is always a crowd favorite!), or other bite-sized delicacies. If you won’t be giving out small plates or setting up tables, steer clear from food that require toothpicks, because your guests won’t know what to do with the toothpicks once they’re done eating.

2. Bite-sized versions of your own food.

– Another cute spin would be to put out a “tasting menu” or “sampler” of the food that you’ll actually be serving. If for example you’ll be serving chicken cutlet drenched in different sauces, serve them in spoons (but remember to give out plates and have tables!). If you’ll be serving lechon, create bite-sized sandwiches, with sauce to match as well.

3. Alcoholic drinks or an open bar.

– When you open up the bar that early on, sure there might be some guests who’ll take advantage of it and show you that they can’t hold their liquor, but giving the guests the opportunity to take the edge off a bit before the reception starts will take their mind away from the fact that the reception hasn’t started yet.

4. Food carts!

– Another genius way to keep things casual but still give your guests the choice on what to eat is opening up a few food carts or stalls just right outside your reception venue. They’ll get a kick out of sampling everything, plus you get to keep your guests happy. Win win!

5. DIY stations.

– If your budget will allow it, carving stations will have your guests cueing early on, and they’ll love watching the chefs make the creations they asked for. A few ideas for light fare that your guests will enjoy? A crepe station or a make your own pizza area, or hotdog stand. Isn’t that awesome?

6. Everything on a stick.

– Having a tapas bar is an elegant and unique way of offering hearty food on a stick, but just remember to offer containers for your guests’ sticks afterwards!

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About Hizon's Catering

For more than 30 years , we have been blessed to be a part of thousands of weddings, debuts, kids parties, corporate events, and private celebrations. In all these events, we make sure we are not only your caterer but more importantly your partner in every step from conceptualizing, budgeting and planning up to final execution.

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