Ask the Expert: Can’t Decide Between a Seated Dinner and Passed Appetizers? Choose Both!

by Ryan Conner | April 17, 2013

dallas weddings, dallas brides, bridal dallas, weddings in dallas

Wolfgang Puck’s selection of passed appetizers.

Thanks to Wendy Timson, Catering Sales Director of Wolfgang Puck Catering, for answering this week’s reader question:

We’d like a seated dinner at our wedding reception, but we still want to incorporate passed options throughout the night. Can we have both?

You can often create the traditional feel of a seated dinner, while modernizing it with a twist.  Start the reception with passed hors ‘doeuvres, then move into the dining room and have all your guests take their seats.Start with a first course served at the table, and during this time do all the formal toasts while everyone is seated and focused. Then kick off the dancing and get everyone up and socializing. Now start serving small plates, which are smaller servings of all your favorite things. The guests can choose to sit back at their tables to enjoy, or just stand and enjoy a few bites. From a small serving of macaroni and cheese, to a fantastic spring dish like tortilla crusted tuna, caramelized grapefruit with poblano avocado puree, you can mix traditional favorites and unique items. Balancing the formal first course with the modern passed small plates gives your guests the best of both worlds.

For more advice, follow us after the jump.

After dinner cut a smaller cake to keep with tradition, but then pass a variety of desserts, from mini whoopee pies to ice cream cones. Mini desserts give guests the opportunity to try little bites of all your favorites.

The final way to incorporate passed items is with the late night snack. I recommend incorporating what you and your friends typically crave when you have been out at night.  Are you a breakfast burrito crowd, or a pizza crowd?  Do you stop for  burgers and milkshakes?  Whatever your favorite late night food is, is what you should serve as your guests will appreciate it while they tear up the dance floor at your wedding.

One Response to “Ask the Expert: Can’t Decide Between a Seated Dinner and Passed Appetizers? Choose Both!”

  • Rosana Santos Calambichis | August 16, 2013 | Reply

    Totally agree! why would you have to choose between sit down and appetizers anyway. Appetizers add an air of elegance to any affair and especially a wedding. And it does keep people occupied until the main course is served. Thanks for the great article.


    Rosana Santos Calambichis, President
    BIG CHEF Online