By Christopher F. Ives, Founder & Executive Chef
Right now you may be sitting at the pool or the Jersey Shore basking in the sun, but soon, the weather will turn chilly and the fall wedding season here in NJ will be in full swing.
Clients rely on our Sir Ives wedding planning team to offer education and recommendations on up-to-the-minute catered wedding trends.
Everyone wants their wedding reception celebration to be unique and memorable. To do this, you need to be creative and surprise your guests with some original and unexpected flourishes.
There is no better way to accomplish this that with your wedding meal.
Worry no more—we’ve got you covered with these fresh and inventive ideas for your fall wedding menu, corporate event or special occasion:
Specialty Cocktail with Your Personal Stamp
The Hot Toddy.
Embrace a festive and warming hot toddy presented to your guests with sugared rims and a cinnamon stick for some swizzle. Still can’t part with champagne? Spice it up with super-slim cinnamon sticks and continue the crystalized sugar rim theme.
Reinventing the Salad Starter
Couples continue to forego the same-old salad course for more interesting options. For fall weddings, a popular alternative is soup. To carry it off, it’s all about presentation and flavor–consider squash bisque served in little hollowed-out pumpkins or butternut squash soup ladled over crumbled blue cheese.
Seafood-based starters are also very popular, but you can bypass the standard crab cakes in favor of flavorful smoked salmon or fish mousse.
If you do opt for a salad appetizer, add a seasonal element–aged cheddar, pumpkin seeds, grapes, or figs.
You can’t go wrong with the classics – filet mignon, roasted chicken, and salmon will always be crowd-pleasers. Also consider rack of lamb or thick, delicious pork chops. I like Cornish hens instead of chicken for a more stylish alternative.
Trending down: Dessert bars
It’s over. People are weary of the over-the-top dessert bars with more sweet selections than most stomachs can handle.
Wedding desserts are moving in a more simple and elegant direction. Yes, there is “the cake,” of course (which is a topic worthy of its own blog post).
But other feature desserts we are suggesting to clients for fall 2015 NJ weddings include:
- caramel-coated lady apples on cinnamon sticks
- an apple cider donut suspended on a demitasse spoon over a shot glass of milk
- small-scale warmed apple pie a la mode served in martini glasses
When you find the right wedding caterer to work with (and we hope it’s us!) impress upon them your desire to serve a few special items during your meal that are inventive and unexpected.
By doing so, you express to your guests how much you care about them and that you made a special effort to show your appreciation by serving a very special wedding menu.
By Christopher F. Ives, Executive Chef, Sir Ives Caterers, Monroe Township
A beautiful salad course is key to a wonderful wedding reception meal, particularly in the summer months when vegetables are at their freshest.
In the past year, we’ve updated and enhanced our special occasion salad course selections.
The Sir Ives executive chef team here in our Monroe offices sampled hundreds of salad combinations and dressings. We concluded that simple, flavorful ingredients work best, especially when you add a little crunch with a sweet and salty punch.
Our goal was to offer a fresh, beautiful salad presentation that surprises guests and subtly lets them know that a special and memorable meal is forthcoming!
We’d like to share our most popular salad course ordered by Sir Ives clients for their summer 2015 menus here in NJ.
I hope you will enjoy it as much as our guests do!
Sir Ives’ Artisan Lettuces With Avocado Dressing and Pistachios
Serves 8 Guests
1 diced avocado
1 cup buttermilk
4 teaspoons sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
kosher salt and black pepper
12 cups mixed color spring lettuces (such as red leaf, watercress, and baby bok choy) lightly chopped if necessary
1 cup shelled roasted pistachios
In a food processor, process the avocado, buttermilk, vinegar and spices until smooth.
Immediately before serving, drizzle the lettuces with the dressing and sprinkle with pistachios.
Present on beautiful plates with a thin slice of sweet Artisan bread.
Photo courtesy of Anna Williams at RealSimple.com
Whether you are planning a corporate event, breakfast meeting, wedding or any other event in New Jersey or New York, consider hiring a professional caterer to oversee your important occasion (or even a more casual celebration at your home).
Of course, there’s a cost, but the benefits are significant:
* You have a great time at your own party
* You do not have the hassle of planning, shopping, prep, clean-up
* We can manage décor, seating, tableware, linens, flowers, entertainment.
* Your guests are impressed and have a wonderful time!
But, wait, there are even more benefits:
Sir Ives Professional Servers Make Your Event Polished and Upscale
Our attractive and professionally-dressed servers will:
* Pass and present food and drinks
* Continually pick up empty plates, bottles, glasses
* Keep an eye on your guests to ensure that everyone’s needs are met
* Provide you with time to mingle with your guests
We Save Your Valuable Time
Parties and events that bring together lots of people, serving them all without the help of a professional caterer can be an arduous and time-consuming task. We know exactly how to create the menu to make the food, the desserts and the drinks complimentary. The only thing you need to do is to furnish us with dietary specifications, cuisine preferences and the number of people attending your event.
Enough Food, the Right Food, the Freshest Food
Food shortages can embarrass you and ruin your celebration. You need the services of an experienced caterer who will make proper estimates based on the number of attendees. This ensures the right amount of food and drinks are abundant until your last guest leaves your event.
Different events have different needs and this also applies to the food and drinks. Sir Ives Caterers will work with you to ensure that the kind of food that is prepared is in line with the number of guests, their dietary preferences and any special needs. In addition, our professional catering staff will help you to create the kind of party that is appropriate for you which will make your event memorable and unique.
Every Detail Will Be Managed by a Professional Sir Ives Event Planner
We have the experience and the skill set required to make your party a success. Apart from the food and drinks, we look at the big picture and factor in every detail. For instance, we know the kind of utensils and serving dishes to use. Buffet set-ups with linens and skirting. Great eye appeal will make the dining experience more enjoyable.
Chat with Sir Ives Caterers
Call our professional event planning team at (732) 521-1108 to chat about your special event coming up.
We’d love to share our ideas and hear yours as well!
Prefer to email us? Contact us at email@example.com and we’ll respond within 24 hours.
Sir Ives Caterers will deliver the barbecue right to your home—ready to serve!
Our clients requested it and we are more than happy to deliver!
Let’s face it—if you live or work in New Jersey, you have a lot going on seven days a week. From work to family to activities and other obligations, it’s a surprise any of us have time to socialize with friends and family.
Sometimes, you decide not to host a summer barbecue due to the headache of shopping, prep-work and clean-up.
It’s enough to deter anyone from hosting a summer party here in NJ.
So we decided to help solve the leg work by doing it all for you!
No need to lift a finger—we’ll bring the menu to your beach house, townhouse or pool house!
That’s why we created the Sir Ives “Easy Breezy Backyard Barbecue”.
Starting with as few as 50 guests, we’ll assemble all the basics that you need, including paper goods, and deliver them ready to serve.
Your home-delivered NJ barbecue from Sir Ives includes:
The Classic Sir Ives Barby:
Pre-grilled & ready-to-enjoy!
- Fresh Angus Burgers and All-Beef Hot Dogs with Sesame Buns and Rolls
- Grilled Italian Chicken / Southern Fried Chicken / Barbecue Chicken
- Sausage w/ Peppers & Onions, Served with Fresh Rolls
The Fresh and Delicious Sir Ives Side Dishes:
- Jersey-Fresh Steamed Corn-on-the-Cob w/ herb butter
- Steaming Homemade Boston Baked Beans
- Mixed Garden-Fresh Greens w/ Sir Ives Homemade Raspberry Vinaigrette
- Creamy Cole Slaw
- Primavera Pasta Salad
- Red Bliss Potato Salad
Sir Ives Healthy and Sweet Summer Dessert:
Chilled Watermelon Wedges
Call us at 732-521-1108 for PP pricing and availability.
Here’s to a great summer of friends, family and memorable New Jersey barbecues !
At every corporate or private event we cater, a Sir Ives specialty touch is to feature something simple, delicious and unusual.
Here’s a perfect example you may wish to use for your weekend entertaining:
Whenever we present these simple and summer-fresh kabobs, our clients and guests always remark how pretty and tasty they look and taste.
If you are finalizing your Fourth of July menu, this may be just the dessert to WOW your guests!
Sir Ives Caterers Brownie and Fruit Kabobs
Start with homemade or purchased brownies that are not too soft. Chill them before threading onto the skewers to harden them up a bit. (Chill your strawberries and blueberries also.)
Grab a bag of grocery store marshmallows (yes you may be able to find patriotic versions!) and thread away.
Finally, it’s drizzle time! In a quick back-and-forth motion, drizzle the kabobs with chocolate right out of the bottle!
Chill them for a few minutes or serve immediately.
Enjoy and Happy Fourth!
(photos courtesy of www.melskitchencafe.com)