Spring has sprung! Finally the weather is changing – the sunshine has appeared, the winter chill has eased and everyone is looking and feeling a little brighter. It’s the perfect time to host a cocktail event. A wedding, an engagement party, hen’s day – whatever it is, we all love a good celebration. Spring literally puts a spring in people’s step and has everyone wanting to get together and mingle with great food, great drinks and great company. As caterers, we are party experts!
So we decided to give you our top 5 catering tips for throwing a successful cocktail event this Spring season.
1. Celebrate The Produce
Design a canapé menu with your caterer that reflects you and the season. Being Spring, you want to choose items that provide a lighter and fresher feel.
Some of the best ‘in season’ produce that “springs to mind” are citrus fruits – grapefruit, oranges, lemons, limes, mandarin & cumquats are all gorgeous at this time of year. Berries of all kinds – strawberries, blueberries, raspberries & blackberries are all in season during Spring. Then there are vegetables such as asparagus, broad beans, parsnips, beetroots, silver beet, rhubarb and leeks. There is plenty to play with in Spring time.
If you’re managing the canapés yourself, choose items that are simple and can be made ahead of time, such as our Asian pork belly with caramel sauce & fresh herbs or our pan-fried prawns on betel leaf with ginger & peanuts. Find those mouth-watering recipes here!
Image by Eugene Hyland
2. Embrace The Change
If weather permits, entertain outdoors! Everyone loves a garden party or the chance to step outside after being cooped inside for the whole of winter. There’s no hotter ticket in town, then that first spring party.
3. Choose Wisely
If budget is a factor, chat to your caterer and see if you can come to a compromise on what you can provide yourself. Perhaps the caterer is responsible for all canapés, but might allow you to provide your own produce for a grazing table that they can assemble so you don’t have to worry.
And when it comes to grazing tables, there are too many that are covered from one end to the other in cheap and undesirable ingredients – not to mention the waste! Be smart and choose items that guests ACTUALLY want to eat. Ham, roast beef, mini artisan rolls & triple crème brie = crowd pleasers. On the other hand; blueberries, pretzels, dips and a table where you don’t know where it starts and where it ends – a trend that will fade very soon!
4. Offer A Little Something Extra
If you want to include some zing – a fresh & easy cocktail to offer your guests upon arrival works really well – it adds an element of excitement and immediately lifts the mood. Your guests will all feel really special. It can also help bring together the season, style, food and the overall vibe of the party if matched appropriately. Here’s one on us!
Spring Paloma Cocktail
• 45mL tequila
• 15mL lime juice
• Sparkling pink grapefruit, to top
• Grapefruit slice, to garnish
• Coarse salt, for the rim
• Lime juice, for the rim
Run the lime on the rim of the glass then dip it in the salt.
Fill the glass with ice, and add tequila and lime juice.
Top with grapefruit juice.
Garnish with grapefruit.
5. Be Smart and Enjoy
Use professional staff if possible. One of the biggest issues we have, is that clients try to save cost on using less or no staff at all. This can mean that you spend the whole event in the kitchen! IMAGINE, the bride in the kitchen putting out fires! As host, you need to be present for your guests to help spark the energy! It’s obviously a special occasion, you’re already spending quite a bit of money to throw the event, spend that little bit extra on staff so that you can fully enjoy your event and your guests enjoy stellar service.
Lastly, we are the experts, we know what works and what doesn’t. So let us take care of all the planning and stressful elements so that you can actually sit back, relax and enjoy your special celebration. That’s what life is about – celebrating the milestones & successes!
Two Pounds love catering for all types of events – private & corporate, big & small. What started in a tiny kitchen in a Prahran apartment has now evolved and seen us take on our second space in Armadale. Every event we take on, especially weddings, are really important to us and we feel extremely lucky to be taken on the journey with our clients. Food, hospitality staff, beverages, hire items and event planning/management are the areas we can look after for our clients to ensure we make the process as stress free as possible for them.