- 6 years ago
- Wedding: August 2012
When I first started planning and reading everything I could on weddings, the catering budget was always the most scary. Why it costs so much to provide food and drink is beyond me, and I applaud those couples who DIY that aspect, and love family-catered weddings.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t an option for us, and we had fallen in love with a venue that came with a caterer. The cheapest buffet option was $38 a head. Even if we only provided wine during dinner and had a cash bar for the remainder of the evening, once you added on tax and service charges, our per head cost was over $75. Yikes! too much for us, for how many people we wanted to attend.
so we made a radical decision. No dinner!
We pushed the ceremony time to 7pm, and informed everyone via our wedsite and word of mouth that it was appys and desserts only. I was worried if we’d have enough food, especially when in the last week I found out that 10 more people were coming! thankfully, our arrangement allowed for more flexibility like that (plus, 4 confirmed yes’s didn’t come)
Our food order:
Meditteranean platter (dolmades, feta cubes, roasted veggies)
Cheese board with crackers and breads
Raw veggies and dips
Trio of dips (red pepper hummus, spinach cream cheese, and something else I can’t remember and never tasted) with more crackers and breads
Moroccan Quinoa Salad
* i really had my heart set on hors-d-oeurvres, but the per dozen price was too high! I nixed them and doubled up our food stations. I barely tasted the food but everyone told me it was delicious! *
Later on, at 9:30, the desserts:
Our 150 wedding cupcakes
Fresh fruit display
Dessert tray with cheese cakes, little pies, tarts, brownies
Total: $3000. (does not include cupcakes, which we brought in from Whole Foods, and were a gift from my FI’s MOH)
Our bar order:
60 drink tickets to give to our bridal party, parents, special guests
25 bottles of wine, served to our guests during cocktail hour
* yes, we did a cash bar. no one complained. people knew. it was fine! *
Grand total: $4200. Divided by 105 guests = $40 per head.
This really was the best strategy for us, since my family and friends are not well off. We could not expect what is some circles is a “normal” gift of $100 from each couple (in some circles it’s more!). My FI’s family is better off financially- in fact, we got cash gifts from three of her aunts and uncles that didn’t even come, in far greater amounts than my relatives that were there! so in the end, it worked out really well for us.
and there was enough food. everyone was smiling, loving the venue and the good vibes. Phew!
just wanted to share!