The Design of Eating…

Posted by jwimer on Aug 25, 2009

So you’ve contemplated a theme for your reception and carried it through to your invitations in some unique way, scoured inspiration boards for color schemes that resonate well with your tastes, and probably met with a cake designer to create a scrumptious tower of confectionery beauty that will be the piece de resistance at your reception…but have you included your food offerings in your design plan?

Often this is an overlooked category that can play into your overall concept in many unique ways.  I recently sat in on a presentation given by wedding planner Colin Cowie in Las Vegas where he stated that there should be a “design to eating,” and I wholeheartedly agree.  From the progressive time frame of the courses, to the flair of presentation and taste, there are so many ways to design your reception catering to become another seamless element in the grand plan of your event.  To do this subject justice, I am going to divide a number of great options into several posts on the subject, and hopefully I will stimulate your culinary inspiration using some of our recent experiences!

The first and probably most easily adaptable way to “design your eating” would be to:

  • Speak to your caterer about incorporating elements of your theme, color scheme or decor into your food displays.  This can be done with props, specialty table coverings, natural elements and a whole host of other options.  Two weeks ago we catered a wedding with a citrus color scheme and theme and I had so much fun accenting our organic vegetable crudite display with lemon, lime and orange slices displayed in risers for the dip selections, creating a citrus colored cake with lemon sponge batter and lemon curd and raspberry puree filling, as well as accenting throughout the room with organic lemons, limes and oranges.

Citrus slice riser for food display

  • Following in this same vein, your food can easily be accented with coordinating fresh floral garnish from your color scheme, centerpieces or bouquets.  We catered an outdoor wedding in early summer where the dahlias in the centerpieces and bouquets were beyond beautiful, and by adding them to our hand butlered appetizer trays, our food really popped with color!

  • Though you must be careful to exercise moderation with this next option, your color scheme can be integrated into the foods chosen.  Specialty colored drinks with unique names served up in glass beverage urns, color themed appetizers, or foods that contain color words in their titles…all examples of this principle.  For instance…you have selected the color pink for your wedding reception.  Your caterer could serve citron infused pink lemonade, use Madagascar pink peppercorns to season your fillet medallions of beef, and serve raspberry, brie and almond wrapped in phyllo atop a bed of pink rose petals.

More on this subject to come, but for now, have you already come up with a unique way to include food into your reception design plan?