Small Plates & Hor D’Oeuvres for Your Wedding Day

Some wedding guests cannot get enough of a cocktail hour. It’s a great time to socialize and enjoy your wedding space. So when it comes to your menu, try to think about small plates and hor d’oeuvres that are diverse enough that your guests can each enjoy a bite or two. If you’re stuck on ideas, this is where an excellent caterer will know what to do. A general rule is to try and vary your options so that you offer a little bit of everything. Relish Caterers will guide you through every aspect of planning as well as creating spectacular wedding catering menus.

Inspired Hor D’Oeuvres:

Have fun with flavor when it comes to hors d’oeuvres! Allow there to be a mix of textures and flavors. The featured collage offers some flavor inspiration with a fried oyster in a bucket (top left), a honeydew gazpacho (top right), pretzel crusted shrimp (bottom left), and Asian beef tartar (bottom right).

Hor doeuvres vary in flavor
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Sliders offer a great opportunity to put a new twist on a classic favorite. Consider these Relish Caterers slider creations that are featured on the Celebrate at Snug Harbor menus.  A falafel burger (left), short rib in a cream puff bun (top right), fried chicken slider (middle right), and a truffle beef sirloin slider (bottom right). While you’re keeping the classic style of a burger, you are also offering a variety of flavors.

Sandwich Hor Doeuvres
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Small Plates:

If you’re looking to offer a bit more with your cocktail hour, consider offering your guests a few small plates. The featured photo captures a delicious burrata (left), steamed duck bao (top right), and tuna on a rice cracker (bottom right). Slightly larger in portion, a small plate is the perfect upgrade to your cocktail hour. Your guests that have traveled to come to your wedding will thank you, too!

Blog Replacement
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Hor d’oeuvres and small plates are meant to create an ambiance in which your guests become excited about what is to come in the rest of the night. Because the cocktail hour is a more laid back part of your wedding celebration, take risks and get creative with your food! See all that Relish can bring to life by visiting their website: Relishcaterers.com.

Morning vs. Evening Weddings

When having a spring or summer wedding, you have options in scheduling your wedding day. Although very popular to have a late afternoon wedding that goes into the night, there’s something unique and intimate about having a morning wedding. Whether you’ve dreamed of having a dinner with dancing into the early hours of the morning, or mimosas with low-key brunch or lunch reception, you can’t go wrong as long as you consider the main elements of your day.

Consider the venue:

Make sure your venue offers you what you want for either style wedding. At Celebrate at Snug Harbor, you have the choice of both indoor and outdoor venues with lots of lighting for a morning wedding.  Daytime weddings are also excellent for a garden party or reception, of which Celebrate offers many garden options. The featured photos highlight both indoor and outdoor ceremony options for a morning wedding. The Art Gallery on the Snug Harbor property offers optimal lighting so that everyone can see the gorgeous details of your ceremony and the building. The top photo took place in our Tuscan Garden, which is entirely outdoors. Indoor or outdoor, you can’t go wrong!

Morning Ceremony
Photos taken at Celebrate at Snug Harbor

If you’re looking to go a little more classic with your ceremony and reception times, Celebrate at Snug Harbor has you covered. The featured collage captures the possibilities Celebrate at Snug Harbor has to offer you for a late afternoon/evening wedding. The couple on the left is walking through the garden in the sunset. Very magical! The top right photo featured our Tented Pavilion, which is a great combination of an indoor and outdoor space. The photo captures the bistro lights as the sun is setting, creating a romantic atmosphere for you and your wedding guests. The bottom right photo of the collage shows off our Great Hall, which can offer you and your guests any creative lighting options you wish when the sun goes down!

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Get more inspiration from the Celebrate at Snug Harbor Pinterest Page!

Consider the menu:

If you’re going for a morning wedding, you’ll want to offer more of a lunch-time meal to your guests. Because Celebrate at Snug Harbor is operated by Relish Caterers + Event Planning, you won’t have to break a sweat over morning or evening wedding menus.

For morning weddings, consider small plates as your main meal with hors d’oeuvres. The featured collage highlights just a fraction of what Relish Caterers can come up with for your special day. You can serve a fresh beef carpaccio, as featured on the top of the collage. From the left to right, the bottom photos include a beet napoleon, escarole salad with roasted strawberries and walnuts, and a roasted beet salad. You’ll want a caterer that can bring color and flavor to life with your small plates. Relish Caterers can do just that!

Small Plates Morning Menu
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For your evening wedding, it’s best to serve a dinner to your guests.The featured collage captures a few of the options you’ll have with Relish Caterers. The photo on the left shows a delicious beef tenderloin. To the top right, a seared pork chop and to the bottom right, a roasted free range chicken. You’ll be able to select exactly what you want with a caterer who has been a leader in creating and executing one-of-a-kind weddings.

Dinner options for Evening Wedding
Get more inspiration from the Relish Caterers Pinterest Page!

There can be fantastic pros to either wedding time. The most important decisions you make will be where you have your wedding and who will take care of the meals so that no matter the time of day, you’ll be able to enjoy the memorable day.

Main Courses for Your Wedding Reception

It is a common misconception that all wedding venues will serve delicious and elegant meals. This is why investing in a reputable caterer is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when wedding planning. What’s unique about Celebrate at Snug Harbor is that it is operated by Relish Caterers & Event Planning. You know that quality food is a high priority to them. Their fine-dining approach to catering ensures seasonally inspired menus that utilize the freshest ingredients – prepared to perfection. So your only job is to think about what you’d like to serve to your guests for the reception main course. Some advice: vary your options. You’ll want to offer a red meat course, a chicken or pork, and a fish option so that you can cater to the dietary needs of your guests.

Red Meat Inspiration:

For your red meat options, Relish Caterers can offer you dishes that your guests will want to devour. The featured photo on the left of the collage show a beef short rib over mashed potatoes with cherry tomatoes. To the top right, you have a duck over sweat peas with sprinkled pomegranates for an extra boost in flavor. To the bottom right, you have a grilled beef tenderloin over a custom herbed butter and jus and sautéed greens.

Red Meat May Blog
Food & Photo by: Relish Caterers & Event Planning

The Chicken or Pork Option:

For your second meat option, you’ll want to offer a classic style of chicken and perhaps dare to offer something new and unique that your guests haven’t tried or had yet. Relish Caterers takes a creative spin by offering a roasted free range chicken with baby artichokes and a basil and lemon caper sauce (right side featured photo). This is a great variation in flavor to offer alongside the coveted roasted chicken dish. A different spin on chicken could also be to serve a pan seared chicken over the always satisfying seasoned roast potatoes. If you’re looking to go sans chicken, you may want to consider serving the seared pork chop with potato galette, roasted apples and poppy seed buttermilk vinaigrette in the top left of the collage. Can you say yum?

Chicken or Pork
Food & Photo by: Relish Caterers & Event Planning

Your Fish Option:

It’s important to offer options when it comes to fish. Guests may not wish to eat meat but may also be selective with their seafood preferences. Relish Caterers has you covered here. The featured collage highlights just a fraction of what you can have served at your wedding dinner. The top left photo includes a slow roasted salmon over black truffle mashed potatoes and buttered English peas for delicious flavor and texture. To the bottom left of the collage you’ll see a miso black cod over vegetable rice. If you’re looking for a more classic spin on cod, you could offer a roasted cod, featured on the bottom right, with sautéed vegetables and a puree sauce for a flavor boost. One of our favorite options is a citrus lobster on the top right of the collage. Bursting with flavor, the lobster is a dish even meat lovers will want to bite into!

Fish Options
Food & Photo by: Relish Caterers & Event Planning

The aforementioned dinner options are not your only choices. A great caterer will take into account your preferences and can customize the dinner menu to reflect what you want for yourselves and your guests. Relish Caterers takes pride in offering customers with culinary innovation and impeccable service. For your wedding day, don’t settle for less than these standards!

Sensational Desserts

Wedding desserts are always a favorite for guests. While the wedding cake is very important, so are the other desserts that accompany it. In fact, some brides and grooms opt out of the cake entirely to solely focus on some fabulous sweet treats. The key to getting it right is to incorporate a combination of desserts that have different flavors and textures to either support the wedding cake or take it’s place at the dessert table. Try to have some sort of cake or tart, a fruity dessert, and most importantly, chocolate!

Cakes and Tarts:

Who doesn’t love cake? When it’s your wedding day, you’ll want a piece of cake to share with your new husband. There are no limits when it comes to cake, either. In the featured collage, Relish Caterers created a delicious almond cake with powdered sugar sprinkled on top, and some peach slices on the side. Next to this cake, Relish Caterers whipped up a cheesecake blueberry compote, and a rhubarb tart loaded with flavor. When it comes to cakes, you want the flavors to vary so that each one stands out.

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Photo and Desserts from: Relish Caterers

Fruit and more fruit:

Isolated fruit is often overlooked when placed on a loaded dessert table. For this reason, you’ll want consult with your caterer about fruit flavors that are popular and won’t go to waste. Relish Caterers created an enticing berry pudding with whole fruits garnished on top. A fan favorite is also the chocolate covered strawberry. In the featured photo, Relish Caterers take this classic dessert up one more notch by adding some edible gold leafing to the chocolate coating. How rich!

Fruit Desserts Blog
Photo and Desserts from: Relish Caterers

Chocolate:

Is it really a dessert table without something chocolate? Relish Caterers takes an intriguing spin on the classic chocolate desserts by combining classic with creative. The featured photos include stacked chocolate chip cookies held together by toasted marshmallows, a chocolate mousse with candied nuts and a toasted marshmallow dollop, a chocolate cupcake with espresso frosting, as well as a blondie crust piece with a fruit jelly garnish on top. The best part about chocolate is that you can almost always incorporate it into a dessert.

Chocolate Desserts Blog
Photo and Desserts from: Relish Caterers

You’ll want to consult with your caterer on ways to incorporate your sweet-tooth preferences into your wedding desserts. Investing in a caterer will be the most important decision you make if you want your desserts to be sensational!

The Evolution of the Cocktail Hour

Over the past few years, the cocktail hour has moved from the opening act to center stage.  With more and more couples extending their cocktail hour to be 1.5 hours or to hosting “cocktail hour” style receptions, couples are opting to focus extra attention on creating unique culinary experiences for guests to enjoy while mingling before the reception.  

A mix of passed and stationary hors d’oeuvres, as well as action stations, have all become part of the modern cocktail hour.  The cocktail hour is a great way to offer a wide variety of tastes and flavors, ensuring everyone will find something they enjoy or may try something new for the first time without having to commit to selecting it for a dinner choice.

An added benefit to the extended cocktail hour is the ability to skip the formality of a 3 course seated dinner and get everyone up and dancing that much sooner.  After 1.5 hours of indulging, your guests are full and ready keep the night moving with toasts and festivities.  Many couples are opting for a 2 course plated meal or one course with a late night dessert offering.

 

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Truffle Mac and Cheese

 

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Lobster Dog

 

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Tuna with Olives

Continue reading “The Evolution of the Cocktail Hour”

Welcome Drinks and Couples Cocktails

Set the tone of the day with a custom designed wedding cocktail inspired by the Bride and Groom.  It could be a sentimental choice, like what you were drinking when you first met to a drink that you both love.  Work with your caterer to design a concoction that’s uniquely yours for the day bringing together your personal tastes and personalities.  

A twist on a classic cocktail is also a fun way to bring something old and something new together.  The Champagne Cocktail, Bellini Manhattan, Mojito or Margarita are great places to start when designing your signature cocktail.

If your wedding menu is geared in a specific ethnic direction, enhancing the theme with a specialty cocktail is a great way to create excitement. Each season also represents unique opportunities to toast.  Hot Cinders and Hot chocolate drinks are a warm way to welcome guests in the winter months.  Fresh juice infusions and spiked milkshakes make for fun refreshing options in the Spring and Summer.

From the top, then left to right: Mojito, Bellini Manhattan, Margarita, and a Champagne Cocktail

Food and Drink Pairing:

Beyond the specialty cocktail, work with your caterer to design a beverage package that compliments the menu.  If you’re serving chicken, pairing it with a riesling sangria or white wine cocktail is best.  If you’re serving  steak or red meat, pair it with a dark spirit, such as a Scotch based cocktail or a customized Old Fashioned. If your menu is mostly fish or a vegetarian dish, couple the plate with something exotic, such as a fruit-infused caipirinha or Prosecco limoncello.

Relish Caterers’ Very Own Chicken Roulade with a Fresh Vegetable Medley Accompanied by a Riesling Sangria

What’s in a name?

Once you decide on the drink recipe, taste, preparation and garnish, the final (and most fun) next step is giving it a name that is truly your own.  Some easy ways to start your creative engine moving would be to focus on the primary ingredient and then adding your names.  Combo the drink name with your names, if you’re pet lovers, work your pet’s name into the drink name.  Mentioning the season or making reference to an inside couples joke in the name are also great ways to start a conversation among guests.   

Blushing Bride Cocktail: Vodka, Cranberry, & Orange Juice.

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