Original article by BrideMalta.com
Catering is a subject critical to wedding preparation and one which is at heart to many Maltese. Our love for food could arguably be traced back to the influence of our geographic neighbours but due to the adaptive and flexible nature of the Maltese people, we have been more receptive to different flavours from a variety of different cultures. Wedding food is no exception and over the years apart from witnessing a great improvement in the quality of food, we have also been treated to great varieties and innovative culinary ideas.
The choice of food for a wedding reception is of utmost importance and for a number of reasons. Food and drink accounts for a big chunk of the wedding budget. Get this wrong and you will never forgive yourself for spending the right money on the wrong food. Needless to say having a tight budget does place some limitations on your choice of menu but don’t despair. The difference in price between a very good wedding and an ordinary wedding is not as big as you might think. The trick is to try and identify things that will satisfy and impress your guests and cut down on unnecessary expenses which may go unnoticed by the majority. Few people have an idea on the cost per item of the food on the menu, so choose what looks and tastes good. However, do not make the mistake of assuming that your guests have no idea what’s presented to them. Even if they’re not the average connoisseur, your wedding is definitely not the first they’ve been to.
Do not try and reduce costs by cutting down on the number of items on the menu. Your guests might end up being disappointed even though the catering would still have set you back a considerable amount of money. If you do not wish to make any compromises on the food but your budget is holding you back, one possible solution could be to choose a number of items that tickle your fancy and then make up for the ‘quantity’ by introducing an alternative such as a pasta table. This table could cost more than your average item on the menu but could be great value in terms of quantity. It is not advisable to have a number of food tables as this could lead to excessive queuing not to mention the added costs.
Some of the well known caterers are booked solid for the whole year. It is therefore possible that some of your guests would have attended another wedding with the same caterer the week before. Although caterers do their best to guide couples when choosing the wedding menu, it is important to ensure that the food does not end up looking and tasting the same as last week’s wedding. After all, the food should be a reflection of the tastes of the couple. If one is not so keen on food then the reliance on the caterer would be much greater.
Sit down meals are slowly becoming ever more popular in Malta. There are many divergent opinions to this style of wedding celebration as opposed to a traditional reception. Whether it’s because of the size of your wedding party or because you want to treat your guest to a gourmet meal there are still a lot of issues to consider and pitfalls to keep away from. The number of available venues and hence caterers that offer this service might not be so abundant, and a common choice is usually hotels. However caterers can provide you with a number of menus to suit your budget. There are a lot of extra costs which might not be so evident, so as always look before you leap to any hasty decisions. Although you should have no problem with the quality of the food especially with high profile caterers, be careful that just because the food is given French names does not mean it should be any better or should cost a bit more!
Many people do not give the same importance to desserts as they give to the other food. It is surprising how guests look forward to some sweets at the end of the celebration even if it seems there is no room to gulp in more food. In this respect it is wise to discuss your requirements with the caterer in order to get some advice on the trend and the quantities to order. Lately we have seen new ideas in the choice of sweets at weddings, ranging from gateaux tables, to crepes and fondue. Anything that can give your guest one last fabulous impression.
Whether you like it or not, weddings in Malta have reached a stage whereby people have nearly seen it all. Some tend to unwillingly make comparisons and very often the topic of discussion seems to be food, amongst sporadic comments about the bride. The way to people’s hearts seem to truly be through their stomachs!!