Bars for Your Wedding? And We Don’t Mean Alcohol…

Bars for Your Wedding? And We Don’t Mean Alcohol…

Every couple wants their wedding reception to be a unique reflection of their personalities and relationship. Adagio Djay Entertainment works with couples on the invitations, the lighting and music, and dancing to create memorable, special celebrations. Newlyweds looking to wow guests might also include non-traditional, creative wedding reception food ideas – like a bar with no drinks.

place setting at reception

Why Have a Food Bar at Your Wedding?

In addition to the customary reception staple of a drinks bar, many couples now opt for a food bar. The chief benefit of a bar is that it offers wedding guests customizable choices. A signature cocktail at a wedding reception can be memorable, but so can a french fry bar.

Another reason to consider an inventive food bar, especially if children will be attending, is that not everyone drinks. A fun bar can be an inclusive gesture for guests of all ages, beliefs, and backgrounds. It can also be a conversation-starter: friends and family can mingle while waiting in line to fill their plates. 

Savory Bar Options

Buffets have long been a traditional wedding reception staple. Many people are familiar with dessert bars since self-serve ice cream and candy stations are becoming common at bridal showers. A successful high-concept savory smorgasbord combines these two celebration stalwarts into something novel and tasty that will get everyone talking.  

A Taco Bar

Whether it’s family Taco Tuesday dinners or late-night food truck purchases, Americans of all ages love a good taco. Attendees from the flower girl to the grandmother of the bride will likely find something to satisfy their taste buds. Diners will be full and happy if the taco fixings feature both unconventional toppings and standard fare (salsa, cheese, etc.).

wedding reception venue

A Bruschetta Bar

A bruschetta bar works great for a next-day brunch, a cocktail hour heavy appetizer, or a meal on its own. The crusty bread and fresh produce can bring a rustic, Mediterranean feel to a gathering. A station that includes proteins like mozzarella, prosciutto, and goat cheese can make for a heartier offering.

A Sliders Bar

These bite-sized hamburgers are another sure-fire crowd-pleaser. Their size means the new couple and their company can try more than one flavor combination. 

A Crudité Bar

Even at a party, it’s essential to eat your vegetables, so couples might consider a “make-your-own crudité platter” station. Vegetables, olives, nuts, and an assortment of flavorful dips will be an entertaining and healthy option. Veggie shooters (shot glasses containing dip and vegetable sticks) can provide a clever play on the “bar” concept.

Dessert Bar Options

In the Midwest, the phrase “dessert bar” conjures images of baked cookie squares. But a reception boasting a sweet after-dinner treat station can be an elegant, crowd-pleasing feature. As with the savory varieties covered above, a buffet-style last course offers variety and sets a wedding reception apart.

A S’Mores Bar

S’mores are a classic and fun dessert. Plus, they are perfect for a cool evening. The warm and gooey snack will be a favorite of your guests plus fire pits create a fun, and warm, atmosphere. 

You can also do an indoor s’mores bar. Check out North Mallow. They are experts in s’mores catering and will have all your guests lining up for this delicious snack.

cake balls

A Waffle Bar

Waffles aren’t just for breakfast anymore. The waffles can be the stars, with a collection ranging from traditional to chocolate chip, to whole grain or gluten-free. The waffles can also be the platter for delicious toppings: guests can stick to syrup, or construct an entire sundae.

A Cookie Station

A quick search of “cookie station” on Pinterest will yield dozens, if not hundreds, of ideas. A wedding reception cookie station can be simple and ingenious: think milk and cookie shooters. Couples might choose a cookie decorating station; encourage pics of the finished product for a perfect social media photo op!

An Ice Cream Sundae Bar

Friends and family will appreciate this all-American favorite, but that doesn’t mean couples can’t add a twist. Delicious frozen non-dairy substitutes in popular flavors can supplement traditional ice cream. Choices like sugar or waffle cones and toppings such as brownie crumbs and candy bar pieces will add to the party!

A Hot Cocoa Bar

A cocoa bar can be a terrific addition to a winter wedding, inviting people to warm up while staying festive. Stock this station with varieties of cocoa, edible swizzle sticks (candy canes or wafer cookies), and of course, assorted marshmallows.

glasses with straws

Personalize It!

There are lots of ways to personalize a themed station, beginning with the theme itself. The cuisine could celebrate the culture of one partner or the couple, or a place special to the couple. Newlyweds from Texas might feature buffet-style barbecue at their reception, or a pretzel bar if they got engaged in Germany.

Decor is another way to enhance the wedding reception experience for guests while highlighting the couple’s particular style. A consistent look and feel make a theme, so an exceptional food bar takes some time and effort. When a couple commits to an engaging motif, the buffet station can be a highlight of the reception photos.  

Figure Out When and Where

The great thing about a food bar is its versatility: it works before, during, and after a wedding reception. A smaller station during the cocktail hour can establish a theme, and draw guests into the reception’s look and feel. A bar can supplement dinner, be the main course, or be a classy but casual snack option for an after-party.

Whether it’s a snack bar or a sophisticated take on the dinner buffet, the placement of the food bar matters. The station’s placement in the reception venue will signal to attendees whether it is serving a main course or appetizer. 

table set up at wedding reception

Putting It All Together

A couple should decide to include a food station early in the wedding planning process. A themed food bar or self-serve station requires avid attention to detail. For example, there may be a need to avoid some dessert bar toppings if any of the wedding party have food allergies.

The most important rule when it comes to any aspect of planning a wedding reception is simply to have fun. Contact Adagio Djay Entertainment to minimize wedding planning stress and maximize the enjoyment of planning the party of a lifetime. When the music, lighting, and videography are in expert hands, you can relax and let your imagination run wild.

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