About a year ago, we met a couple who hired us to cater their wedding. We met with them several times throughout the year and we worked with them to plan a menu based around food that meant something to them, we invited them over for a tasting and then this weekend, we catered their wedding.
Somewhere along the way, wedding food became so commercialized and meaningless with a standardized choice of chicken, beef or vegetarian. It's one of the most memorable meals of a person's life and more often than not, it's an afterthought and not always by the bride and groom, more from the venues that specialize in weddings. We ran into this in planning our own wedding. The food was one of the most important aspects to us and we wanted to do something different and we wanted our wedding meal to be interactive, communal and memorable. So we didn't do a standard menu, instead, we had a family style feast where our two families got to know each other the old fashioned way - over sharing (literally) a meal. Large plates of food came out in courses and it was more of an event. Our two sides chatted while they passed the food around the table. They talked about the food since it was, for the most part, a surprise and something a little different. It was an amazing thing to watch as all 140 of our guests suddenly felt like they were at a big Thanksgiving dinner, passing the food around the table.
This weekend, I saw the same thing happen at the wedding we catered. The whole room seemed to unite into one big party where the food was free flowing and being passed around. It really was such a cool thing to be a witness to. Unfortunately the only photo that I was able to snag was of tomatoes, just before they went into the oven to slowly roast all day at 200 degrees. More unfortunately I couldn't download the photo but it's sitting on my instagram feed, covered in thyme and shining brightly. They got all jammy and sweet and then were rested on top of a farro, mozzarella and basil salad, which was inspired by a caprese salad, one of the couple's favorite things to make at home.
We work our hardest when we cater a wedding and it's about a year long process of getting to know the couple and creating a menu that is customized to them and then the week of we get consumed by logistics and last minute planning before we source our ingredients and start our prep. We work our hardest for weddings but the payoff of seeing two families come together to share the food that we made is one of the most satisfying experiences I've ever had in the profession.