(Closed) Spinoff – is it my responsibility to tell the bride/groom of food allergies?

posted 8 years ago in Food
  • poll: How do you let the couple know of dietary restrictions?

    The couple should put something on their invitations to let them know of restrictions

    It is up to the guest to let the couple know

  • Post # 77
    1569 posts
    Bumble bee

    Celiac and some extra food life threatening allergies here. Normally what I do for dinner parties and smaller parties is politely tell the hosts about my food allergies and ask if they could tell me what will be served so I can know in advance and prepare accordingly.  For smaller parties and activities this usually does the trick and if there will be salads, I always bring some extra stuff I can eat because last thing I want is to be sick for days because most people really lack the knowledge to manage food properly. For example, cooking gluten free pasta… in the same water where they boiled regular pasta! Yes, in theory they are serving me gluten free pasta… that they turned into gluten containing pasta by boiling it in the same water :(.

    Obviously weddings are different. But as a bride, I would be happy if my guest approaches me to ask if there will be options for her. If I was not having some, then I would make sure the person has something to eat. Some allergies are pretty common. But some are really weird and extreme ones and it is impossible for the hosts to guess. Would it be nice to receive every single invitation with an Are you allergic to any food note? Sure that’d be awesome. But not the norm  

    Post # 78
    1301 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: November 2014

    I usually include a line about dietary restrictions to RSVPs for any dinner type event and will be for the wedding as well.  Includes celiacs, food allergies, vegetarians, vegans, etc.  Most of my friends with food allergies are very pro-active and let hosts know about what they can’t eat – particularly if its life threatening. 

    Post # 79
    1630 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2015

    I have food allergies and I would never expect the bride/groom to contact me bout them. I would ask them if there is any way to accommodate them, and if they say yes great, if not, I am honestly fine with that too. I am perfectly capable of bringing food, and sneaking out to my car to eat it while the main dinner is going on and sneaking back in (yes, I have done this, I feel bad asking them to accidate me when they already have enough on thier plate). So, personally I feel it is the guest’s responsibility.

    Post # 80
    7414 posts
    Busy Beekeeper
    • Wedding: May 2014

    @ButterflyButterfly:  Yes, to both.  The couple should has asked, but you should have told as well.  If I’m hosting a dinner party I expect people to tell me if they have an allergy – i’ll usually ask, but if I forget I would expect people to tell me.


    Post # 81
    875 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2014

    @ButterflyButterfly: absolutely!! The bride and groom have enough to worry about leading up to that day, and you can’t expect them to remember on their own. It is your responsibility to remind them, esp. if you want to eat at their wedding.


    I have celiac disease and whenever I have attended weddings, either my Fiance or I will write a little note reminding the bride and groom that I will require a gluten-free meal. Even though they already know, I just want to reiterate for their own sake and for mine too

    Post # 82
    1032 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    It’s both, and I think that as reasonable hosts, the bride and groom should accomodate – almost all cateres will arrange an allergin-free meal if necessary.

    We had a small enoguh wedding that we could ask people in person, as well as having a varied buffet meal.

    The only guest we would have had to make special arrangements for, my SIL with celiac, ended up not being an issue as she had baby twins who were only a few months old so decided to stay home and not fly cross country. All of our vegetarian invited guests were in Japan :D.

    I think the bride and groom should ask, and that if you have an allergin you should contact them and let them know. I do find your case perculiar though, OP, as I never would have considered a wedding where onyl shrimp was served. Outside of allergies, I know dozens of vegetarians and people who simply dislike shrimp. While I understand that you can’t cater to everyones tastes, there are certain foods that are polarising (shrimp, blue cheese and mushrooms come to mind), that only offering dishes that contain one of those items is going to leave a lot of guests unsatisfied, even without allergies.


    Post # 83
    1202 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: March 2014

    Around here you got a chicken, fish or steak option so I would never think to ask.

    Post # 84
    1606 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: December 2014

    I think it depends on the bride. Some would appreciate it so they could get you a meal you enjoyed, and I think unfortunately some would take it offensively. Like you were being demanding or self centered. 

    Post # 85
    572 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    @ButterflyButterfly:  I have a lot of food allergies (and am a vegetarian), so I’m very sensitive with this issue as it pertains to our own wedding! We are serving a duo plate of chicken and steak, but the menu card is going to say something to the effect of “if you have special dietary needs let your server know and they will accomodate you.”

    Post # 86
    844 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2013

    Who only serves one shellfish course? That’s just asking for issues. But if I were allergic to shellfish, I would definitely tell the hosts ahead of time. Even if it’s a dumb choice on their part, it’s my health at stake.

    Post # 87
    492 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

    @CakeyP:  +1 to this

    Brides (lets face it, it’s the ladies who are doing all the boring work) have enough to worry about without trying to coordinate who’s vegetarian, who’s Halal, who’s nut allergic, who’s gluten free and on ad infinitum. I think it’s much safer for the person with the restriction to contact the venue or relay this to their waiter so they can have the confidence to eat their meal without fear of unintentionally harming themselves physically, spiritually, etc.

    Post # 88
    224 posts
    Helper bee

    My venue does it’s own catering and buys local/concocts everything from scratch themselves (they even make their own mayo, and here I thought Miracle Whip was good enough for me!) and so they’re capable of changing up the dishes for any allergies. I was a vegetarian for 3 years for health-related reasons, and my mother isn’t quite celiac but can have severely uncomfortable reactions to gluten, lactose and a slew of other foods, so for me it was really important to offer a few different choices on my menu and to make sure my venue could accommodate those issues.

    However oh my goodness I would hope people would tell me about their allergies. I have several friends with severe allergies to a variety of items, so it really isn’t possible to remember every single one, nor for me to know off the top of my head every ingredient or item that the food might contact should they ask. I would appreciate if someone told me of their allergies and mentioned it to their server just to have the status of their meal double-checked, just because I have a million things to remember and as important as their allergies are (and to some the difference between life and death) I can barely remember where I left my car keys let alone what could possibly kill them 🙁

    Maybe that makes me a terrible person, but I remember when I was a vegetarian I would often google what courses were if they were on an invite, and see what they traditionally included, and then make my selection according to that. I’d also ask my server what contained meat and what didn’t when I got to the venue, and let them give me a guided tour of what I should avoid and what I should eat. Bottom line is the bride, groom and guest are all hoping that the guest will have a good time, so if anyone comes to my wedding don’t be shy about letting me, the venue, and anyone else who might matter know.

    Post # 89
    7960 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: April 2012

    it’s nice if the couple asks on the rsvp but if not i do believe it’s up to the guest to take the initiative before the wedding day.

    with that kind of allergy, i am rather surprised that you didn’t let them know ahead of time.  i would be concerned had you eaten something that you didn’t realize had shellfish.

    Post # 90
    1775 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: July 2018

    I think it’s absolutely 100% up to the guest to let the bride/groom/venue know about any allergies. Hopefully the hosts will take care of the situation and ensure that the guest is not served anything they are allergic to but IMO, it is the guest’s responsibility to let them know.

    Post # 91
    900 posts
    Busy bee

    While the couple should have something in their RSVP’s that asks for information about dietary restrictions, it is the responsibility of the guests to provide that information.  So yeah, if you have a serious allergy, you should be putting it out there in advance, not expecting someone else to know about it for you – even if you have to write it in because the couple forgot to ask! 

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