May 2010 Weddings

Is food for the cocktail hour necessary?

Our ceremony is at 5:30 with cocktail hour immediately following and then dinner starting right away.  Do we really need to have some sort of food during the cocktail hour?  We were planning on doing cheese and crackers and veggies, but even that is $5/pp plus tax and tip.  We expect 160 people, so we're looking at $1000.  So we're thinking about cutting it out.

I was planning on making some of our floral centerpieces, but if we cut out that expense we could easily afford to have the florist do all of the centerpieces (with plenty of money leftover) and I wouldn't be a stressed out lunatic the day of.  

Is it ok to just say no to cocktail hour snacks?
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Re: Is food for the cocktail hour necessary?

  • Hm....idk. Personally I like having snacks during cocktail hour. I am providing a fruit/cheese/veggie platter assortment for my guests. But our ceremony doesnt start until 7pm so I think guests will be hungry before dinner.

    Are you allowed to maybe bring your own appetizers or something? Maybe have something light like lemon bars or little cookies or something. could easily prepare beforehand and easily set them up.
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  • yeaaaah I would probably say no to little snacks. I don't think it's a huge deal if you're serving dinner right away. Let people drink cocktails.
  • You need to serve some kind of food. If you're going to have alcohol, you don't want people drinking on empty stomachs. It spells disaster, trust me.

    And even if you aren't having alcohol, people are going to be hungry. If they have lunch at 12, and then you have no food during the cocktail hour, then it would be around 7 before people got to eat. That's a long time to go without food. Your guests will really appreciate the food, even if it's just cheese and crackers and veggies.

  • We're doing fruits and veggies and small finger foods for the cocktail hour while we're finishing up our pictures.  Ditto cloud nine about the not serving drinks on an empty stomach.  Technically, even if it is only an hour, I think you're supposed to serve some sort of something to snack on if you're going to be serving alcohol.
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  • i think if you are having dinner immediately after the ceremony then no, you don't need snacks..if you had them wait a little before the dinner  then you would probably need them...hope this helps!
  • I think its fine for you to skip them if your doing dinner right after.
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  • We aren't allowed to bring in any outside food except for the cake so there is no cheaper alternative.  However, we weren't planning on doing favors, but could get away with an edible favor.  Maybe we should be doing Chex Mix favors or something.  Laughing
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  • If dinner is really immediately, then no hors d'ouvres are neccessary. If it's a 30 minute wait, some sort of appetizer should be served.
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  • cocktail hours typically should have food, especially if you are not there. Most people like to drink, eat and mingle.  Regardless if dinner is to be served 30 min later, you don'tk now if you are going to take longer with picture traking or what not.  I'd say at a min have a little snack. 
  • I think you definitely need to have food.  People are not going to eat right before your wedding, and even if the reception starts at 7, you won't eat right away.  Last thing you want is someone falling down drunk cause they ate on an empty stomach.  Plus as with any cocktail function some sort of light snack is always served.  I say if you can afford it you should do it.  But in the end it is totally up to what you want to do. 

    Good luck!! 
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