Book ahead. Many caterers have busy diaries with other events and tastings so it is important to book ahead if you want to allow yourself plenty of time for menu alterations and further sampling. Most tastings take place at the caterers kitchen which gives a good opportunity for you to meet the rest of the team and the chefs. Should this not be convenient for you, ask if they are able to come and cook in your house – this takes more planning but should certainly be possible. Arrange for the tasting to be over lunch or dinner as there will be a lot to eat! Allow 2.5 hours for a full wedding tasting.
2. What do you like to eat?
So much of the time brides and grooms worry about what their guests will want to eat at their wedding – eclipsing the main importance – what do you want to eat?! It is your day and you’re footing the bill so ensure you select a tasting menu that you like. Guests and unusual dietary requirements will naturally follow suit.
3. Sample a selection of food
A selection being enough to offer variety but not too much that you can’t eat it all! By sampling a selection of different canapés and dishes you get more of a feel of the caterers particular style and theming. You want to aim for a balanced menu, such as for canapés: 2 x meat, 2 x fish, 2 x vegetarian. For the main meal you might like a light fish starter, a heavier meat main and a light, palette cleansing pudding to finish. A selection also offers back-up options in case your original dish was not as expected. Your wedding planner should be able to talk you through various suggestions.
The better the brief, the more accurate the result. Show your wedding planner what you like. Food presentation styles, cutlery, crockery, glassware, linen, table centres…. Modern or traditional? Photos say a thousand words. If you are not quite sure what you like, try and show what you don’t like. Both are good starting points! Check out our Instagram and Facebook for some ideas.
If you are supplying your own drinks for the wedding ensure you bring a bottle of each to the tasting. It is important to sample the food with the wine to ensure they complement one another. Your wedding planner should be able to make additional suggestions should the pairing not be correct.
6. Bring a friend
Ensure you have a second opinion. Most tastings cater for 4 guests: Bride, Groom, Wedding Planner and assistant. Should you wish for another opinion, ask if you can bring a critic-loving friend along.
The whole point of food tastings is to try out different food, styles, presentations and flavours. If you do not like something say so. If you would prefer the sauce on the side then now is your time to discuss it. If you rather the dish was served on a black plate as opposed to white then mention it. If these things go unsaid your event planner will be none the wiser and the key is to get it 100% correct for you on the day.