(Closed) More guests, not so fancy food

posted 7 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
1798 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

@BetterSherm:  Your menu sounds more suitable for a lunch. Have you considered having an afternoon lunch reception? Otherwise, I think you should offer some heavier entrees than sandwiches. Think about things like pasta and chicken dishes, which are generall cheap.

Post # 4
1844 posts
Buzzing bee

I think its a perfect plan. 

no one knew your plan before hand so they aren’t going to be dissapointed in the slightest. In reference to your veggi and gluten free friends, I would rather have enough food that works for everyone and is good than great food which not all of your guests can enjoy or partake in. 

Your guests will have fun and they will have good food that fits your style… what could be better than that!?

Post # 6
236 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I don’t want to sound like a glutton, but honestly, one of my favorite things about evening weddings is the heaviness and specialness of the dinner.  I often eat less during the day so that I can enjoy the reception meal.  But that’s just me.  I think what you are planning suits your style but like ms fahrenheit said, not your time of day.  Even so, your guests will be pleased to eat anything yummy, so I don’t think your choice will offend them.  They might be secretly disappointed though

Post # 7
673 posts
Busy bee

That sounds like a great menu for a picnic, but you could end up with some guests who are a little bit disappointed in dinner if they ate lightly and planned on a larger meal. As a PP said, it sounds like a great lunch plan.

If this is really your best option, then can the deli do hot sandwiches? That would lend itself to making the meal a little more dinner-like.

In all honesty, you might want to run the math on your plan either way. To get a meal down to $14/person is already a bargain. By the time you do the deli catering plan, buy enough sides for 100 people, and buy enough fruit/vegetable/shrimp/cheese/cracker platters for everyone, you’re probably going to be very close to that catering price.

I advise this because I was thinking of doing something like this for a party, but then I realized that by the time I ordered enough food so that we wouldn’t run out, it would be almost the same price as doing a lunch “shower” menu at the really nice catering venue. The venue menu plan would have been about $200 more and would not have included nearly as much liquor, but wouldn’t have required set up or rentals.

Post # 8
913 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

I agree with previous posters. An evening reception calls for a hot meal.

Post # 9
366 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

We are doing an evening wedding, and I mean ceremony at 7 pm, followed by a cocktails and hors d’oeurves, nothing too heavy. I dont think that a wedding require a full sit down meal unless it is over dinner time and as long as the food is good and there is enough you should be fine with whatever you choose. The only thing I am bothered  by is potluck deals (withthe exception of small family based weddings), your guests should not have to “feed themselves” in my opinion.

Personally I’ve never been a fan of wedding meal food. Ususally the meal is over cooked, but I’m a bloody rare beef kinda girl and I like my veggies crisp.

Post # 10
6123 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Are people going to be flying in for your wedding?  I had this same stress when I was planning my wedding but every guest had to fly in and get hotels/cars.  I was constantly worried that the food/venue fanciness didn’t warrant the trip cost. 

$14/pp is actually a very good price, but if it’s not doable with your budget, then it’s not doable.  You know your audience best though.


we concluded that we’d rather invite everyone we wanted to celebrate our day with us, instead of crossing people off or waiting for a “no” RSVP and then inviting someone on a backup list, just to fit in the budget with the buffet.


This is actually a B list concept which is frowned upon etiquette wise.

Post # 11
673 posts
Busy bee

Taking some of the latest comments into account, what about doing something that falls somewhere between a cake and punch reception and hors d’oeuvres with cocktails? If you plan it early in the evening, then you leave your guests with plenty of time to get something to eat for dinner. I suspect that would meet your budget goals, and it is something you can easily explain on the invitation so that folks know to either eat beforehand or make dinner plans afterwards.


Post # 12
1623 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I was at a wedding where they did a sandwich buffet, along with sides, for dinner and it was actually very good! I will admit a few other guests did snicker at the idea, but I think you’ll have that at pretty much any dinner (to some guests things are over cooked, others wish it was cooked longer). 

As long as it’s enough food (base) for a filling meal, you should be fine. 🙂 The sandwiches I had a previous wedding were very large, catered sandwiches…a lot nicer, bigger, fuller than your typical cafe sandwhich. 

I love the idea of dinner fitting your style (and budget)! 🙂 

Post # 13
2104 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I think as long as it’s not over dinner hour, then you’re fine.  But if it’s during what people would expect a meal hour to be, you don’t want them skipping a meal and then becoming cranky that they’re not getting enough food at your wedding because they thought they’d be getting a full meal.  

Post # 14
2135 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@LibertyBelle:  I agree with this.

Also, I just wanted to say that I don’t think that you have to have it at lunch with that menu. You are still feeding them after all (And in my opinion, if they complain about free food, they are the ones in the wrong!!!!) I think that it should turn out fine, especially if it is your style. I just don’t like the idea of “needing” a hot/heavier meal at dinner. Just advise people on what to expect.

Do what works for you, and don’t change the time of your wedding! Like I said, no one should complain about free food, and if all they look forward to is the food, then too bad!

Post # 16
9029 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

The food doesnt have to be fancy, as long as there will be enough food per person to suit the time of the day that the reception will be held.If you are doing only appetizers then thats more of a cocktail reception and it should be stated on the invite so people know not to expect a full meal.

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