Six Tips for Planning the Perfect Wedding Menu by Harriette Rose Katz

Food and beverage, as well as how it is presented, is among the most crucial aspects of your wedding day and can have a powerful impact on how your guests experience the event.  Wedding Planner extraordinaire, Harriette Rose Katz of New York’s Gourmet Advisory, shares her tips on planning the perfect wedding menu to help you craft a sentient and sensational culinary experience for your wedding:

  1. 1. The Guests
Always begin by considering your guests.  They’re not coming to your wedding to diet.  It’s a special occasion and they expect special food. Plus, there’s just something about love that stokes the appetite, so don’t be shy about serving savory, decadent food.  Always have a vegetarian option, which in most cases can be vegan as well.  Some guests may have additional special food needs and preferences, such as allergies or gluten-free, and they are most likely going to speak up for themselves and request these dietary preferences either before or during the celebration.  As long as you have an option that can suit their needs, all will be well and they will leave the event feeling satisfied and graciously served.

  1. 2. The Presentation  
We eat with our eyes before we eat with our mouths, visual presentation matters greatly in the enjoyment of a meal.  If it looks great, it tastes even better.  When using seated service, specify how the food will be plated.  For buffet or food station service, use a sumptuous, inviting table design concept and immaculate flatware and linens.
3. The Tasting
You absolutely must do a food tasting with your hotel or caterer before deciding on the menu.  Knowing what you’re purchasing and serving to your guests is essential.  It’s what you’ll be eating on your wedding day too so don’t skip the tasting and make sure to taste each offering to make the most educated decisions.
4.  The Wine
Don’t buy the most expensive wine.  A lovely mid-range selection that pairs well with the entree is the best choice.  Most of your guests won’t know the difference anyway. However, if you or your fiance, or either of your families are wine enthusiasts, feel free to offer specialty wines during cocktails, or paired with dessert. Again, tasting the wines prior to the event is crucial.
5.  The Entree
Offer an option that suits the time of day. Chicken or fish is ideal for an afternoon meal, and meat or fish fits the evening.  And, always offer a vegetarian option, which in most cases can be vegan as well.
6.  The Dessert
As with the protein, offer options in addition to the wedding cake.  A chocolate soufflé and a fruit tart is a smart balance, complemented by an assortment of cookies, macaroons, and small cakes.

Devoting this kind of detailed attention to your menu will be a significant part of making your wedding unforgettable and making your guests feel appreciated.  A final note about service:  As you’re fixating on the food, don’t forget to hire the absolute BEST SERVICE you can find, because how it’s served is as essential as how it tastes.  Bad service can derail a perfect menu.  Superior service can make it legendary.

All the best,

Harriette Rose Katz of Gourmet Advisory Services