So many couples are spending money on appetizers prior to dinner service. I personally love this idea and think it brings a level of elegance to the event.
You can keep the cost down by having the wait staff butler pass these items. You only need to order 2-3 pieces total per person. Remember it’s just a small sample and the dinner will be following shortly. Most guests will only take one appetizer at a time. The wait staff can stagger the service so as new guests arrive they can be waiting for them with trays of appetizers. See if your reception venue has white gloves and if so ask for the wait staff to wear them during the cocktail hour. Very chic!
Some brides want to display a large array of appetizers during the cocktail hour. Once we go through the cost, I explain that this is far more expensive to do. Once you display appetizers, you need to order double the amount. As soon as you place small plates on that table, it’s a “free for all” and guests tend to take more than they should. You could run out quickly. In addition, the appetizer table may look beautiful for the first few guests but then it becomes messy and unattractive by the time half the guests have invaded it.
What to serve? There are so many ideas. You can try to match your appetizers to your theme of the wedding. You can also introduce some of your heritage by choosing one or two ethnic items. Mix both cold and hot applications to give your guests a variety. Another nice touch is to pass a “signature cocktail” along with the appetizers. For a cool added feature, hire a jazz band to play during this time.