Ready, Set, Eat, Drink, Party! This week Alan J. Tomasetti and Adrian Juarez sit down with us to dish about their reception so put your dancing shoes on because we are talking catering, cake and tunes.
Eat, Drink Party: Planning the Reception
Q: Let’s talk food. You are Italian and Adrian is Mexican. Was it easy to select a menu for your reception?
A: Food is the centerfold of any Italian or Mexican household and we knew that we wanted high quality food, and lots of it. Aldea has several catering options in their packages and the caterers come to the venue as part of Aldea’s open house at the end of each month. This allowed us the opportunity to taste a variety of options.
We chose a buffet over sit-down because we wanted to provide more options to guests. We narrowed our choices between Babbo Italian Eatery, and Mi Catering. Mi Catering had a lovely variety of different cruise options and the flavor was amazing. We didn’t like the fact that they have a staff member serving food from behind the buffet. We felt that would slow down the line.
Choosing the Menu
Q: What made Babbo a slam dunk option?
A: Guests are given the choice of one appetizer, two salads, two pastas, two main courses and focaccia bread. We were pleasantly surprised by the options and quickly scheduled a private tasting.
My mom flew in for a visit so Adrian and I each brought our moms to the tasting. We sampled six appetizers, five salads, seven pastas, and eight main courses and, as you can imagine, took food home! In the end, we chose mini meatballs in marinara and the pesto bruschetta for appetizers which are served during the cocktail hour, the roasted brussel sprout beet salad, Napa Valley salad, pasta primavera, three cheese mac and cheese, Tuscan chicken and asparagus fra diavolo.
Q: That is a lot of food! How about the bar?
A: We opted for the beer and wine open bar option, mostly because it was more cost effective. Aldea offers several options and we chose chardonnay, pinot grigio, merlot and two domestic beers (Bud and Coors Light). We also added two specialty cocktails– the Mai Tai and peach margarita – both drinks we have enjoyed during our travels. Adding a specialty ‘welcome’ drink, to kick off the cocktail hour, allows us to thank our guests for coming in a unique way.
Q: We love wedding cake! So, let’s talk dessert… Tell us about your cake.
A: Let’s face it…we are two guys getting married and we want our cake to be more masculine than traditional but we also wanted something impressive. As a result, we opted for the four-tier option. We designed two tiers in a navy quilt pattern accented with silver beads and the alternating two are solid with a dark grey ribbon at the base. Peach orchids will accent in four strategic spots.
Q: What does your cake topper look like?
A: We decided to have our cake topper in script, but we wanted to have our first names instead of our last names. We custom ordered our cake topper from Chicago Factory on Etsy. Since the top of our cake is 6”, we wanted topper to be flush with the size and chose the silver paint on birch. We also got the option to have the removable pegs so we can display it on our mantle in the stand the company provided us.
Kicking it into High Gear: Choosing your Entertainment
Q: Let’s get our groove on! Did you decide on a DJ or live music for your reception?
A: Adrian and I came to the conclusion that we needed someone that could bring people on the dance floor, keep everyone engaged, and make the evening a huge hit. Aldea has 2 DJ options, Push Play Entertainment, and Tony the Entertainer.
Push Play Entertainment has a lot of bells and whistles to make a reception look like a borderline nightclub but we didn’t feel like the DJ had the personality we were looking for. After speaking with Tony for a few minutes, his outgoing personality really got us excited. He’s very flexibly with modifying the reception schedule since we’re not doing a garter/bouquet toss and tweaking various other games to suit us more. He’s been extremely responsive and amazing to work with.