Just as you want the first glance everyone has of you in your wedding gown to be a knockout moment, you want the same to be said of the first bites your guests are greeted with at your reception. To make an excellent first impression, you want your hors d’oeuvres to shine and surprise with elevated and updated twists on Southern classics.
Leah Berhanu, director of sales and marketing at Pigéon Catering and events, says the ingredient to impress guests most can be summed up in one word: caviar.
“Caviar is a for-sure way to upgrade any hors d’oeuvres” said Berhanu. “Adding it to an oyster bar, as well as fresh lump crab, can really grab attention.”
In addition, she suggests incorporating seasonal ingredients to elevate one-bite cuisine.
“In the spring, bringing in Ponchatoula strawberries will make everything taste sweet and look colorful,” said Berhanu. “During the holidays adding mirliton on your menu is a festive addition.”
She also notes the importance of visual continuuity.
“When we come into the wedding to set up service, typically the florists are leaving,” said Berhanu. “Asking for a handful of flowers or even a few petals to add to the corner of a passed tray can be really pretty. Doing just that little element makes everything tie in together. It all helps to tell a visual story.”
Sarah Hall, president of Joel Catering, finds that an enticing way to elevate your hors d’oeuvres is to creatively make a nod to the interests of the couple.
“A lot of our grooms are outdoorsmen, so we get requests for game or Louisiana-focused foods,” said Hall, who created a popular deviled quail egg. “Since quail is a top choice, we put a spin on it.”
She suggests topping it off with caviar to make it all the more special.
“It’s an elegant way to serve a very local and interesting dish,” said Hall.
For a truly unique visial, she suggests building upward.
“One of the top trends is bringing in a custom designed vertical presentation,” said Hall. She suggests a greenery wall with inserted spaces to present individually-sized hors d’oeuvres or even small champagne flutes. “People take so many pictures now for social media, so a backdrop element in the mix of your reception has become super important. It’s a good ‘moment’ for guests.”
This article originally published in the Summer 2018 issue of New Orleans Bride magazine.