Board Room as a venue.
The menu featured:
fresh jalapeno slices wrapped in bacon
cheeses served with assorted gourmet crackers
so your party is a successful one.
Topics: appetizer catering
Last week we catered a special event fund raising party featuring casino games, silent auction tables, a special guests and some great food and beverage. Since the purpose of the event was to raise money, providing casino games as part of the cocktail party like setting was a great way to entertain the guests and keep them there.
Since this was an evening event, a dinner buffet was also provided featuring some donated pasta dishes that we complimented with Parmesan crusted chicken tenders and:here. And because casino games were brought in, the appetizer catering menu needs to be designed with the games in mind so people can grab a bite to eat while still playing a game without getting messy or requiring eating utensils.
Fresh Mozzarella and Cherry Tomatoes drizzled with our seasoned marinade and fresh basil
A delicate phyllo triangle filled with spinach, feta & cream cheese and a touch of garlic
Black olives, marinated artichoke hearts and button mushrooms surround pepperoncinis, provolone cheese, prosciutto ham and salami
The Passed Appetizers included
Rosemary Cheese Straws
Puff pastry straws garnished with Parmesan cheese and a hint of rosemary
Marinated Shrimp served with Creamy Tequila Lime Sauce
Fruit and Cheese Kabobs
Fresh Strawberry, Hawaiian Gold Pineapple chunk skewered with cubes of Muenster and Gouda Cheeses
Several bars were set up throughout the room to make it easier to serve guests as they moved around the room. Two of the bars offered beer and wine, the third served two signature drinks and all were staffed with professional bartenders.
If you're planning a special event with casino games,
here are some party planing tips:
Passing one to two bite appetizers allows the guests to eat, chat, play some games and shop the silent auction without having to carry a beverage and a large plate and fork around. If both hands are full, there's little chance people will play any games or participate in the silent auction. A simple pop-in-the-mouth bite to eat while mingling works well for this type of catered affair.
The size of the crowd and any other buffet you may be offering will determine how many wait staff you'll need for appetizer passing. Your caterer can help you determine the appropriate number of wait staff you'll need. If the entire meal is going to be made up of appetizers, then you'll more than likely need more people as you will have more things to pass. More on appetizers as a meal
Setting up beverages and bar stations throughout the room and as near to the silent auction and gaming tables as possible allows your guests to easily get a drink but more importantly to participate in the silent auction - the very purpose of the event.
When asked to design an appetizer catering menu for Southwest Airlines, located at Love Field in Dallas, Texas to celebrate the Wright Amendment, we selected 6 new destination cities that Southwest can now fly nonstop. Researching those cities for what foods are popular,or what the area was known for, we selected the following catering appetizer station menu for this grand, historic celebration. Taking some history of the city, transforming traditional foods from that city into appetizers, allowed us to create a very unique menu. And, since guests would be arriving in shifts over a 6 hour period, using catering food stations allowed the appetizers to be fresh from start to finish.
Land of great corned beef and Corn Beef Row, we chose mini corned beef sandwiches and some great Cole slaw to celebrate this city.
What's more perfect than the Chicago Dog? We created a mini version of this famous hot dog complete with all the toppers, a picture and directions to make them. As a side item to accompany those, potato salad seemed perfect.
Since there is a strong Cuban presence there along with Florida producing over 70% of the United States' citrus supply, we created mini Cuban sandwich triangles and offered some fabulous citrus fruit to complement this city.
With it's own Chinatown, which was developed nearly 20 years ago to preserve Asian heritage in Las Vegas which dates back to before Nevada was even a state, egg rolls and spring rolls seemed fitting to honor this city.We served those with some plum sauce and fresh fruit salad.
Since Los Angeles was a Mexican territory until 1848 when it officially became a part of the United States we thought street tacos were the perfect fit for an appetizer. BBQ beef and veggie street tacos and all the toppers were complimented with Mexican style rice.
And last but not least was the city of Denver. Because a trademark for the name "cheeseburger" was awarded to Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In in Denver, Colorado, we felt mini burgers were a must have on this appetizer menu. For those not eating beef, we also offered chicken sliders and then added a macaroni and cheese station to complete this city's menu.
Lately, you can find catering trends for everything – for weddings, cocktail parties, corporate events and even family gatherings. Trends include service styles, menu themes and even menu items and their sizes. Growing in popularity is the Breakfast for Lunch or what we’d like to call the Brunch for Lunch menu. This is a perfect menu idea for an office holiday party! Instead of a traditional continental breakfast or cocktail party so often served for corporate holiday parties, consider a holiday brunch reception.
Everyone loves breakfast! From eggs, bacon, sausage and potatoes to French toast, pancakes and waffles, there are so many breakfast options you can serve! Why not change your corporate holiday lunch to a brunch and include these favorite foods? Accompany these favorites with some fresh salads, fresh fruits, yogurt and you can create a new and different corporate holiday brunch menu sure to please.
Brunch casseroles like quiches, frittatas and stratas are a great way to incorporate eggs into a lunch menu. Add some breakfast meats, bacon, sausage or ham, some breakfast potatoes and some fabulous salads. Fresh fruit salad is a must for sure. However you can also add a great spinach salad – either a traditional salad with mushrooms, egg and hot bacon dressing, or, add one with fresh strawberries, walnuts, pecan or almonds, drizzled with a balsamic vinaigrette for more modern salad. Salad greens topped with feta cheese, dried cranberries and nuts also create a perfect brunch salad.
Don’t stop with just an egg dish, add some French Toast, pancakes or waffles to the menu for the sweeter side of breakfast. For a special touch, offer traditional syrups, jams, jellies, fresh berries or flavored butters like maple butter, for toppings. Stuffed French toast is another great item to add to a brunch menu. French toast can be stuffed with fruits, flavored cream cheeses or jams for a special treat. Or, stuff the French toast with ham and Swiss cheese, called a Monte Cristo, for a more savory addition to a holiday catering menu. You can also use turkey and a variety of other cheese like Gouda to create this perfect brunch menu item.
For the continental breakfast contribution to the menu, add some great muffins, savory or sweet cornbread, biscuits and scones are perfect for a brunch menu. Coffee cakes and cinnamon rolls are another good menu choice to consider adding to your brunch menu. Because there are so many varieties of each of these, have your professional caterer offer suggestions and ideas on which menu items to incorporate into your office party catering brunch menu.
Brunch beverages should include some great coffee, flavored teas and fruit juices. Punches also are a perfect beverage choice, served with or without alcohol, and there a hundreds of punch recipes that will complement your menu. Alcoholic beverage options commonly served a brunch include the Bellini, Mimosa and Bloody Mary. How many people you’re hosting will determine how many options you should plan on serving.
October brings us many food ideas to incorporate into your corporate catering or special event catering menus. Just this month alone features the following food:
And there's more. To the monthly food items, there are also Weekly Food Holidays for October which include
Chicken Soup for the Soul Week
So that's leave the daily food days and again, the list is extensive so put your creative ideas together and call your caterer and get some new and fresh office lunch ideas for this month.
World Vegetarian Day
What is the difference between vegetarian and vegan? Neither of them eat meat however some vegetarians will eat eggs and some dairy items, vegans avoid any menu item with animal products. So, for a vegetarian office lunch menu, try a Pasta Primavera, Caesar Salad and some freshly baked rolls or bread and celebrate!
Now this is not what you think - no vanilla or chocolate pudding, but sausage,suet or other savory pudding is what this holiday is all about.
Homemade Cookies Day
A great reason to pull out your favorite recipe and get baking!
National Fried Scallops Day
Since fried foods do not cater well, we don't recommend this one for catering menu ideas. We'll leave this one up to you to create and here's a recipe to get your started.
National Caramel Custard Day.
Sweet! Smooth creamy pudding a little whipped topping and you've got a different dessert from the traditional bars and cookies.
Quite a busy day with several food holidays. Starting with National Taco Day. A great reason to bring in hot meals for lunch.
Our Combo Soft Taco Bar is the perfect menu item to order for Thursday's office or special event banquet menu. Let your guests know you ordered this to celebrate the holiday!
Or bring in our Breakfast Tacos to start the day off with a celebration.
National Vodka Day
You can cook with it or create the perfect cocktail to enjoy this day.Here are about 1,600 recipes to explore. Drink Responsibly though.
Cinnamon Roll Day
A great excuse to skip the cold cereal or breakfast bar and treat yourself to a little something sweet. Our cinnamon rolls are unique since ours are created in a twist and not the traditional round shape. These are a great addition to any continental breakfast catering you're planning.
National Apple Betty Day
Not really a pie, and not a cobbler but a sweet cinnamon and spice baked apple dessert. Served warm and for a real treat, add some ice cream.
National Noodle Day is today. So many types, so many things can be made for your office lunch catering, here are just a few ideas.
It's National Frappe Day. Go get our favorite from your local small business and enjoy! Typically made with cold coffee and whipped topping, teas, juices and hot chocolate based frappes are becoming popular now too.
Topics: corporate catering in dallas
When you plan an outdoor wedding reception, one of the most important uncontrollable factors is the weather! It's important to always have a back up plan if inclement weather occurs. You do not want to figure that out in the middle of the event hustling tables, linens, centerpieces let a lone all your guests into a space that isn't prepared to acommodate all that activity. Here are a few pictures of an outdoor wedding reception we catered this weekend. Congratulations to the Happy Couple!
The wedding catering menu included some appetizers that were made available immediately after the ceremony - a must for any wedding reception. Guests need something to do and nibble while the post-ceremony photos are being taken, and, as guests arrive to the reception hall. Remember, the bride and groom won't show up for at least 30 minutes - and that's conservative, more typically an hour. So, provide some beverages and some appetizers for guests as they wait for the grand arrival of the new Mr. and Mrs.!
This couple chose some fresh fruit and cheese trays and a unique hot appetizer, our Cuban Sandwich triangles. These have a bit of meat and cheese, were cut small so they were easy to eat and they provide just the right amount of food before the lovely buffet dinner they served their guests.
The wedding reception food buffet tables were created with bright pink table linens and white table skirting, and then that accented with a touch of ivory. The buffet was set up out doors in an "L" shape on the patio which created a solid surface for guests to walk around. If you're setting up buffets in a lawn, make sure you select the flattest surface of the lawn, or, provide a solid surface of some sort of even if it's plywood, for guests to walk on. Those high heels will get stuck in too soft a surface, creating the great possibility of trips and falls. If you're setting up a buffet near a pool, take great care to be sure it's far enough away from the pool so your guests won't fall in while visiting the buffet. Your party rentals company or caterer can assist you with the details for your particular reception venue.
The round buffet guests tables were set up outdoors in a courtyard, creating a romantic setting for this intimate wedding. For outdoor receptions, it's always best to use floor length linens on all your party rental tables. The wind will and can cause shorter linens to blow off the table if not anchored down! Imagine having to reset all the tables again because of a small breeze right before the ceremony starts! Have a heavy enough centerpiece and chairs tucked up closer to the table when setting up out door tables and linens.
And of course, the wedding cake was the star of the table.
For outdoor weddings, the outdoor temperature, direct sunlight, and, as much as we don't want to think about it, bugs, can ruin the prettiest of cakes. Check with your wedding cake baker about what out door temperature is appropriate for your cake. If you can, you might consider setting the cake up in an indoor area to avoid it melting, falling apart, or being ruined by uninvited visitors.
Are you planning an outdoor wedding? Let a professional caterer handle the details for they will know what food works and what food doesn't for an out door wedding reception.
Last week, we catered a special event appetizer party at the Irving Art Center in Irving, TX. The custom menu our client selected included an assortment of hot appetizers and party trays which were arranged on one large buffet table draped in black linens which we accented with colored sashes matching thier color scheme. We used the venue's existing tables and counters for the food and beverage tables avoiding the need to rent additional party items.
They chose some great party banquet linens for the cocktail leaner tables (also called highboys) which were made of spandex instead of the traditional and more bulky poly-linens. These party rental linens create a clean and more modern look compared to tradtional party linens. And, for an added touch, we tied complimentary colored sashes on the table bases to incorporated their color scheme throughout the space.
Cocktail leaners should be placed with plenty of room between them so people can move about and mingle, yet still have a place to set thier plates while eating. Another advantage of using these tables is they eliminate the need to rent chairs for all your guests, however, the catering menu should include one to two bite food items that can easily be eaten with a fork.
This client selected the following party appetizers:
A Mexican pastry turnover filled with shredded chicken & bell peppers and spices
Asian Chicken Blossoms
Crispy wonton filled with chicken, scallion, sesame and soy
Cuban Sandwich Triangles
Grilled flat bread filled with ham, Swiss cheese and mustard
Black and White Hummus
A swirl of black bean and garbanzo bean hummus served with oven fired flat bread strips
Fruit and Cheese Kabobs
Fresh Strawberry, Hawaiian Gold Pineapple chunk skewered with cubes of Swiss & cheddar cheeses
Fresh Garden Vegetable Trays
Garden fresh broccoli, carrots, cherry tomatoes, celery and cucumbers served with Ranch Dip
Aspen's Supreme Dessert Sample
An assortment of all our mini dessert bars and gourmet cookies
All these menu items were small enough and easy to serve, eat and walk around with so guests could enjoy the event.
So you’ve decided to host a Holiday Breakfast and now you need a party menu. Here are a couple ideas. Since it is the holidays, you should try and have some items that you wouldn’t normally offer any other time of the year. Instead of the biscuit sandwiches and breakfast tacos, consider a festive Baked French Toast, a breakfast casserole like our Country Breakfast Casserole, or some quiche, then add some bacon, sausage or ham to complete the meal. Breakfast potatoes or hash browns add a nice touch and then some fresh fruits are always welcome on a breakfast holiday menu.
Jazz up the beverages too! Hot chocolate, Hot Spiced Cider and Cappuccino stations with marshmallows, flavored syrups, whipped cream and spices add a festive touch to the ordinary corporate coffee service. Sparkling Holiday Party Punches, Cinnamon and Spice Breakfast Poinsettia Sippers and egg nog add a touch of special to a holiday breakfast celebration not to mention the classic Mimosa. Create a juice beverage station with iced orange, apple, cranberry and tomato juices and serve in champagne flutes or other fancy glasses (a party rental company will have numerous options for you) for a more party like presentation.
Holiday Brunch Menu
Want a mid-morning Holiday Brunch? For this time frame, you can combine some holiday breakfast menu items and some lighter fare from holiday lunch menus to create the perfect holiday celebration. A frittata or quiche with green and red peppers, onions and cheese, some seasoned breakfast potatoes made with red new potatoes, and some sausage and bacon. For the lunch portion, offer some cranberry chicken salad sandwiches, almond chicken sandwiches and some spicy ham sandwiches, a minted fruit salad and a fresh spinach salad bar with sliced egg, bacon bits, fresh mushroom slices, mandarin oranges, dried cranberries, walnuts, and or almonds. Dressings to compliment the salad bar would be hot bacon dressing, an herb or raspberry vinaigrette, honey mustard dressing or citrus dressing.
For holiday beverages, a cranberry punch, spiced cider, flavored teas, coffees and waters would all do well for a holiday brunch catering.
For mid-afternoon holiday catering ideas, offer some food stations created with several appetizers, dips and spreads, dessert stations and beverages. Offering catering food stations allow your guests to mix and mingle, and enjoy creating the food items their way. It’s also a crowd manager in that people will move from station to station rather than lining up for a traditional buffet. Great holiday food stations include:
Sundried tomato, assorted olive tapenades, smoked salmon, herbed shrimp and grilled asparagus all make a deluxe appetizer presentation and something everyone will enjoy.
These are not only colorful; they have something for every taste preference including vegetarians and vegans. Olives, marinated artichokes, cherry tomatoes, cheeses, sausages and breads or crackers make a beautiful centerpiece and holiday food station.
Holiday Fresh Fruit and Gourmet Cheeses
Have your professional caterer prepare a festive cheeseboard surrounded by fresh fruits, gourmet cheese, breads, spreads and crackers. Not sure what cheeses you’d like, here’s a great Cheese Pairing Guide. Holiday decorations can surround the board and create a stunning holiday display. Pair your selections with wines or holiday punches for a holiday cocktail hour.
Traditional Holiday Foods as Food Stations
If you’re stuck on the traditional “holiday turkey dinner” menu and want to offer A Taste of the Holidays, but don’t want to offer the actual meal, your holiday catering company can create food stations that incorporate the traditional flavors in appetizer form, and create holiday food stations with that. Here are just some ideas.
Holiday Desserts for this menu can be a variety of mini cookies, dessert bars, mini pumpkin and pecan tarts, mini gingerbread muffins, or, consider a giant bowl of white chocolate mousse and fresh berries for dipping or, fresh fruit kabobs (for those who can't eat too much sugar)
Iced Teas, Coffees, Flavored Waters, Chilled Soft Drinks and Holiday Punch
There are just 17 weekdays in December before the Holidays begin!
Your corporate holiday event planning should begin NOW!
1. PickYour Venue
It’s time to find your venue and reserve it. The demand for places to hold a party or holiday gathering will be high. There are just 17 work days in December to host your corporate holiday party. If you want to have your catered party on Friday or Saturday, the most common days for a special event, than that means you really have 6 weekend days available before Christmas to host your gathering unless you’re having a New Year’s Eve Party and then you have 1 day to pick like everybody else wanting to host a New Year’s Eve Party. Booking the venue should be the highest priority right now if you’re not hosting your corporate holiday party at your office. If you already have a venue, that's great..however you still need a caterer and a menu so skip to number 3.
The venue’s availability will also influence what time you hold your party. If the day is the most important part, the time of the party would be second. With only 17 business days and 6 weekend nights in December, the availability of the venue may push your party to an earlier time if the evening is already reserved. Some venues won’t host two parties in one day; some give you 6 hour rental periods so it’s the venue that may have more influence on what you decide to do and when.
Your budget also will influence the time of day you have your party. If you have a limited budget, then a holiday breakfast menu or afternoon holiday snack menu would be a better menu to pursue. Share your budget with your caterer and let them create the perfect holiday menu to suit the event and guest count. Do not try and “stretch” your dollars to offer a meal that really isn’t supported buy your ideal budget. There are lots of creative ways to create party if you provide the most accurate information you can with your event planner or caterer.
Once you have the location, settled on the time of the event, then it’s time to start planning the menu. Professional caterers and event planners will be able to help you and provide all the details you’ll need for a successfully catered holiday party. Holiday packages, themed menus, décor, wait staff, bartenders and party rentals can all be taken care of most efficiently with a professional caterer and event planner. They too will have a high demand placed on them with just 23 days in this holiday season so start contacting your caterer now!
Even though you don’t have all the details worked out, it’s best to get your reservations confirmed, deposits paid, and then work on the final details. If you wait too long to reserve your party hall or banquet room, you may just lose the venue you wanted. And if you wait too long, you may lose the professional caterer you wanted. And if you wait too long, you may have to start your planning all over again.
Topics: appetizer catering