Giving guests the warmest of welcomes with exquisite canapés and a chilled flute of Champagne is the ideal way to begin a wedding breakfast.
Why offer canapés?
Chosen with care, the canapés set the tone and provide a wonderful opportunity for couples to inject some fun – and a little more of their personality into their day.
From a practical point of view, a canapé reception staves off hunger pangs until the feasting begins in earnest and helps to avoid the danger of guests getting too tipsy!
How to choose?
Couples often worry about pleasing everyone and ask how they can make the right decision. We always advise them to start with what THEY like as a couple.
Uncle Jeremy might hate shellfish, cousin Caroline loves Mexican food and the maid of honour is a clean-eating vegan. It is YOUR DAY, go with what YOU like, just make sure that there is enough variety to cover the main dietary requirements.
How many canapés?
We are always happy to advise but in most circumstances, this would generally be dictated by the duration of the reception and whether you would like canapés that are ultra delicate or slightly more substantial. If it’s just 45 minutes let’s say, then 3 canapés per person will usually be adequate.
If you are looking at a two hour wait before guests are sitting for starters, you may want to consider more generous options such as 6-8 canapes per person, or some couples decide to provide a food station (again giving a chance to build on a theme), mini-meals or perhaps a miniature afternoon tea.
Our pick of seasonal canapés
Summer – Linseed cracker, smoked sour cream and caviar; Scallop ceviche with strawberry and tomato sauce vierge; Compressed melon, smoked oil, mint and chilli (v) Parmesan cone with burrata ice cream, tomato and strawberry jam, basil puree (v).
Autumn – Squid ink puff, smoked trout mousse, avocado; Tunworth aero, raspberry vinegar and Thai basil (v); Cannon of lamb, smokey aubergine, strained yoghurt and fresh mint; Seabass ceviche, radish, grains and ponzu.
Winter – Padron peppers, roast corn and nduja; Short rib puff, chives and truffle mayonnaise; Pork ciccioli, 5 spiced cracker, jalapeno and gherkin slaw, apple pickle; Roast potato, sour cream, lardo and caviar.
Spring – Thai style aubergine, mint and lime leaf salad, slow cooked egg yolk (v); Chargrilled beef Ssamjang with jalapeno and truffle mayonnaise; Almond tuille, foie gras terrine, sauternes pate de fruit and passion fruit caramel; ‘The Hawaiian’ – Chargrilled sour dough, bellota ham, pickled pineapple, basil and candied tomato.
The demand for eco-friendly wedding suppliers has never been higher and minimising waste will always be a key priority for wedding caterers.
Once the couple has shared insight into their guests and the format for the day, they should allow the caterer to guide them as to how much food is likely to be required. As wedding and event caterers, we create incredible experiences every day and are well practised at gauging required levels (whilst ensuring there are always back-up options).
We would never advise cutting back on the welcome reception – we never have canapés leftover at weddings – guests are usually pretty hungry at this point in the day! If couples want to cut back, we often guide them away from providing lots of late night snacks, as this is most often where avoidable wastage can occur.
Allergies and other dietary considerations
Careful management in this area is part and parcel of what we do every day, and an element of our work that has significantly grown over the last five years.
In terms of canapés, we would always guide couples to select options that they love but that also work for a variety of dietaries. Wait staff are well trained to assist guests with allergies – this is obviously something we take very seriously.
We would love to hear from you, and to discuss how we can help you to create the wedding day of your dreams. Contact our knowledgeable team of wedding experts on 020 7733 3151 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo credit: William Reavell