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After wedding reception party at our house

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In about a month, our daughter is having an early afternoon wedding reception at the General Warren Inn where the ceremony will also be held. It is basically her show and for the most part, we were asked to stay out of the planning. While about 2/3 of the guests are either friends of the bride and groom, plus some groom family members, about 20 of our friends and family will be attending. Since the reception is mainly cocktails, hor douvres, a few stations offering sliders, macaroni and cheese, and salad - and wedding cake - this is not a formal sit down lunch or dinner and since the party is expected to be over around 4:30, we were thinking of inviting the 20 or so people to an after party at our house. A number of them are from out of town and we would be doing this instead of a brunch the next day. My dilemma is I am not sure what to serve and when to serve it? I think we will be appetizered out but I would like to serve something special that can either be prepared by a caterer or us but not sure when we will have time to do it. I originally thought our daughter would have some carving stations but she isn't doing that and wanted something different. Plus she is a vegetarian. We are not. I like the idea of medium rare prime rib or a filet roast, but I realize these don't usually taste as good if reheated. I am wondering if anyone has done this - either having the meat cook very slowly while we are at the event - we would then have to slice it or perhaps if there is a caterer who could do something like this for under $500 including the slicing? Since there are some people who don't eat red meat, we would probably also prepare some type of chicken dish that can be made ahead of time. My husband can make a good lasagne plus he likes to grill but I think this will be too messy for people since they will be dressed up. Any thoughts on this or any suggestions of caterers for limited service? Thanks in advance.

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  1. I would strongly, strongly advise against trying to do the cooking/prepping yourself. Even if your daughter is taking on most of the planning, weddings are still exciting and taxing and the *last* thing you will want to do on the big day is do any sort of cooking. Baker's Best does lovely catering and has the kind of food you're mentioning (http://www.bakersbestcatering.com/men...). Russo's could also be a good choice.

    Congrats!

    1 Reply
    1. re: dori_pm

      Thank you. I originally had this on the Philadelphia board but it was moved by the Admins. I agree with you, unfortunately based on your area code, I imagine you are in Mass. and we are in Pa. I am going to repost my request asking basically about a caterer in the local area.

    2. How does your daughter feel about you doing a catered party after her wedding and reception?

      3 Replies
      1. re: LaLa

        Is daughter expected to be or planning to be there?

        1. re: monavano

          I think it is more about the appearance of commandeering her day....

          1. re: LaLa

            I noted that in a reply below.

            It would help if the OP could let us know how and if the daughter is involved in this post-reception event, and how she feels about it.

      2. this will sound harsh but - forget it, they'll be tired, you'll be tired, the guests will be tired. let folks scatter and unwind (and sleep and clean up) and do a nice brunch or grill/BBQ lunch the next day instead. you'll be rested, the party clothes will have been changed etc. etc. etc.

        there is such a thing as too much of a good thing especially all at once.

        5 Replies
        1. re: hill food

          I know I would NOT want to be in dressy clothes from morning until night.
          I agree on letting people rest and see if people want to have a casual get together the next day.
          It could also be seen as stepping on the daughter's day.

          1. re: monavano

            This^.

            I think a late breakfast/brunch the next day before folks head home would be lovely, and would provide distance from your daughter's day.

          2. re: hill food

            I also agree- as a guest i would be full and potentially very buzzed by the end of the reception- not ready to go see other people, chat more, or eat or drink any more....

            A next morning or early afternoon brunch would be ideal IMO

            1. re: Ttrockwood

              One might be surprised how much guests drink at an early wedding ;-)

            2. VERY thoughtful of you considering friends & family from out of town attending. How about a little break to rest, change into comfy clothes & rendezvous back at the house at 6:30/7:00 for beer/wine, lasagna & laughter? Hec, I'd be fine with take out Chinese (just sayin')!

              This is what I imagine ALL of my friends would do if folks that are traveling couldn't make it to brunch the next day.

              7 Replies
              1. re: ceekskat

                In my family/circle, the parents would host the evening before- the rehearsal dinner- inviting out of town guests so they won't be on their own and as a way of thanking them.

                I'm sure something early the next day would work, too, as I've attended breakfasts the day after the wedding, before getting on my way home.

                1. re: monavano

                  In our circles the husband to be family does the rehearsal dinner.

                  But i agree with ceeskat ....if you have people over it needs to be a super casual /lets hag out type of deal.

                  1. re: LaLa

                    Oh right- groom's side.
                    Maybe that's also happening.

                2. re: ceekskat

                  I like ceekskat's idea.

                  I am not a fan of next day brunches because I want to get home the next day as soon as I get up in the morning.

                  1. re: cleobeach

                    I've been to weddings where breakfast is served from X until X, and we rsvp for the head count.
                    Many travelers appreciate a meal before they hit the road, and these breakfasts are usually in the hotel where the wedding party has reserved a block of rooms.

                    It's a really lovely and generous offering, and last chance to spend time with relatives and friends before we hit the road.
                    Actually, I like the calm of meeting for breakfast, because we can talk without screaming over the THUMPING MUSIC!
                    It's quite civilized ;-)

                    1. re: monavano

                      At the hotel is wonderful. It's the brunches at someone's home 30 minutes out of my way that start at 11am that I don't like (and now decline with regrets).

                      1. re: cleobeach

                        I'm with you. I get on the road early whenever possible.

                3. ------A number of them are from out of town and we would be doing this instead of a brunch the next day. -----

                  Since there may not be a breakfast / brunch option for the next day, I would do a simple stop by for dessert or snack option after the ceremony. They may be full from the appetizers and cake, but obviously you want to see them.

                  I'm sure that everyone will want to get into casual clothes and if this is the last leg of their trip, they may not want yet another trip somewhere else, not knowing what's expected.

                  Pick up the phone and give them the option! On the day after my son's Masters graduation, I had planned a breakfast for all of the out of town visitors and they had -0- interest as they were all needing to get to the airport.