Mac
Beginner October 2020

Meal Decision

Mac, on May 21, 2020 at 12:54 AM Posted in Wedding Reception 1 52
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Hey everybody! I'm needing a bit of help deciding on my food idea. This was something I really had set in stone in my head, but have recently become quite anxious about. I am having a laid back rustic wedding, and really. REALLY do not want to serve a full blown meal. Eating a meal in my wedding dress gives me anxiety just to think about. I would be incredibly uncomfortable. My fiance and I have always thought we would do several large spreads of cheeses, fruits, crackers, etc. That people can munch on all night while they drink. (we have an open bar) We will also be having a full smore bar, and in my head I figured the snack board would be a fun "laid back, snack and be merry" kind of vibe. My mom really wants to cater BBQ ( It's also the only catering option in my small town ) and I just really do not want to. I know the general response is "it's your wedding so!" But I'm trying to be mindful of guests. Has anybody been to a wedding like this? Was it alright? I don't want it to seem lame. Thoughts and comments are so welcome.
Meal Decision 1


52 Comments

Latest activity by Anna, on June 3, 2020 at 10:48 PM
  • Angelica
    October 2020
    Angelica ·
    • Flag
    What time is your wedding? How long?


    I think most people expect an actual meal. I would do the BBQ or tacos.
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  • Belle
    VIP August 2022
    Belle ·
    • Flag
    I personally never been to a wedding without warm food served. But why not? Most important to me is the atmosphere. Fun people, great songs, just happy vibes. 🥂
    • Reply
  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    6pm, will last until about 9.
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  • Karla
    Super February 2020
    Karla ·
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    If you’re hosting an open bar, you might want to serve something more substantial than cheese, crackers and fruits. I would do some proteins at the very least.


    Also as PP mentioned, the time of your wedding will matter. If you hold it during normal meal times, guests will expect a full meal.
    Another thing to consider— with everything happening right now, charcuterie boards and grazing tables may not be the best with a bunch of (possibly dirty) hands grabbing food from it.
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  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    I totally forgot to mention that there would be meats and things.
    Also we plan to have tongs... Because I'd never expect my guests to grab at food with their hands.
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  • Karla
    Super February 2020
    Karla ·
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    Yeah, I just saw your comment about the wedding time. With a 6-9pm wedding, people will probably expect a dinner. I know personally I wouldn’t be satisfied with just grazing tables for dinner (especially with an open bar) and I would either not attend the reception or leave early.


    Tongs, though better than bare hands, is still risky. Imagine how many people will be touching those tongs? Lots of wedding buffets in the foreseeable future are probably going to require servers for this reason.
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  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    Hmm. Good points. Thanks!
    Although idk about leaving my friends reception because she didn't feed me a meal haha.
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  • Karla
    Super February 2020
    Karla ·
    • Flag
    To each her own. If I were throwing a wedding with just apps and desserts, I wouldn’t hold it during a time my guests would expect to be fed— I would end it before dinner time. I also know how much money most guests spend to attend weddings (not to mention the time they’re taking out of their day to celebrate with you). The least I can do is serve them dinner even if I didn’t want to eat (I barely ate at my own wedding).


    I also worry about having an open bar but not a filling meal— guests are more likely to get drunk a lot faster that way. However, you know your guests best and this is definitely a “know your crowd” type of thing. Smiley smile
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  • Rebecca
    Master August 2019
    Rebecca ·
    • Flag

    If it's during a meal time, you're going to have to serve something substantial. Unfortunately, charcuterie would be considered appetizers, and people might think it's a cake and punch wedding, which would be mid-afternoon, and a shorter reception.

    With BBQ being your only option, I can totally see how you would be nervous about eating in your wedding gown. Are there catering options in the next town over? Or perhaps a restaurant nearby?

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  • Jana
    Master October 2022
    Jana ·
    • Flag
    Food is a requirement if you are serving alcohol. Otherwise you will have drunk guests and you will be held responsible if anything happens because they are drunk. And just cheese and crackers won't be substantial enough. Serve a full meal or enough heavy appetizers to make a full meal (12-20ish per person).
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  • Amazing Planning
    Dedicated June 2016
    Amazing Planning ·
    • Flag
    You could add protein to the grazing table( smoked fish, cold cuts, peanut butter[ as long as no alergies], meat spirals, meatballs, wings, ect) to make it more of a cocktail reception. Make sure to split it up to multiple tables tho as 100+ ppl around one table can be chaos.
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  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    Unfortunately no. We live in rural nowhere town.


    Although you offered an incredible insight! Maybe I'll move the time to make my theme more doable.
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  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    Good idea on splitting the tables. Luckily I will only be having 50 or so people but when then, great plan.
    I think some fish and wings would be an easy add!
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  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    Yeah I think maybe I could have explained the situation better, and would have avoided some of the wild messages.
    My crowd here are all 50+.
    They won't be drinking into oblivion. So maybe I shouldn't have even mentioned the open bar here. My guests won't be coming far out of pocket to attend luckily. No traveling / hotel but I would still love to thank them for their time. I liked the idea of maybe shifting the time frame though
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  • Amazing Planning
    Dedicated June 2016
    Amazing Planning ·
    • Flag
    And no need for a full meal, just probably dont want guest swing by the nearest mcDs or order pizza, but that can happen when the food is bad to and this is basic enough that no ones going to complian. Also no even if you serve drinks you dont need a full meal, or every bar would close, ppl with drinking issues would be millionaires, and no more celebration would take place. But do get wedding insurance incase of food poisoning which you could be responsible for if selfserve(not that much&dollarSmiley winking
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  • Mac
    Beginner October 2020
    Mac ·
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    Thank you!
    Cannot understand the amount of messages and comments im getting about "well if you don't serve a full meal your guests will pass away from drinking"

    I really like your suggestions of adding a few other things! I think that would make it more doable.
    • Reply
  • Karla
    Super February 2020
    Karla ·
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    Yeah, I would just consider shifting the time to be a little earlier or a little later. Think of it this way— most of your guests are going to be getting ready around 430-5pm (assuming it takes 30min to an hour to get ready and give them another 30 minutes for travel time and parking) to get to your 6pm ceremony. Basically people will need to eat dinner at around 4pm the latest before starting to get ready for your wedding. If you instead start your wedding at like 2-3pm and end by 5-6pm, they can go straight to dinner it they’re still hungry.


    When you go on these forums and ask for opinions, you’re going to get a plethora of differing ones. Everyone has different standards of hosting etiquette so I wouldn’t take it to heart too much. No one is trying to be judgmental, but just trying to guide you based on what they see is the “right way”. You just have to take in all the advice given to you, and do what works best for you and your guests.
    Also, the open bar thing— people are bringing that up because it’s actually a liability. If anyone gets too drunk at your wedding and gets hurt or something happens, it might fall on you as the host of the event. If they’re older and not drinkers, then you should be fine.
    • Reply
  • Alythea
    Dedicated May 2020
    Alythea ·
    • Flag
    Honestly Mac I think what people were trying to say is you don’t want some drunk at you wedding reception (I wouldn’t) I would be embarrassed. But if you have plenty of the fruit and cheese etc people would just eat more of it if they do decide to drink.
    • Reply
  • Courtney
    Super September 2019
    Courtney ·
    • Flag
    I looooove snacks but I would think you’d still want to have a full meal option if the reception is over dinner time. There’s just no way to completely fill up on light snacks while you’re dancing, drinking and moving around all night. BBQ seems to fit with your theme and feel but it’s more substantial and people won’t be grumbling about only have a few cheese and crackers as dinner. If your heart is set on snacking only I would push back the start time till 7 or later so guests can have dinner before like PPs suggested.
    • Reply
  • V
    Champion July 2019
    Veronica ·
    • Flag
    Given that your wedding is at dinner time, I would definitely serve a full meal.
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