Today, leading providers are dishing out free samples, packing on unique tastes and creating delectable dishes guaranteed to please.
Messy foods are for outback grill events, booze cruises and music festivals, right? Wrong. Event guests appreciate easy-to-eat options, and catering groups are repurposing age-old recipes to make event options more appetizing.
Crowd-favorite foods aren’t necessarily the cleanest, but they can certainly be cleaned up to make the eater’s life easier. While some guests love their hearty, sweet and classic foods, they needn’t be restricted to “finger-licking good” winds, sandwiches and BBQ options. The following event providers have remixed typical event food ideas. Check them out:
Preston Bailey Supplies Tiramisu Grab-and-Go Offers
Preston Bailey turned an entire Four Seasons New York Downtown into a catering establishment, supplying tiramisu as a grab-and-go options. Striking out the eating difficulty, it successfully celebrated its partnership with Four Seasons, all while keeping event-goers happy.
S'mores Gets Portable with Lollipops
Yes, it’s possible to eat a S’mores product without the mess. In fact, S’mores created campfire lollipops to familiarize their guests with handheld fun at the Engage!14 Wedding Summit. By reinventing an age-old theme in a new way, S’mores effectively redesigned the way guests look at desert.
Great Performances Dishes Out Fried Chicken Cones
By dishing out fried chicken stored in waffle cones, Great Performances allowed its guests to roam about the premises with self-serve options designed to circumnavigate the need for plates. Fried chicken might not be the hardest-to-handle food item, but it’s certainly deserving of a little ease-of-eating. The cones were offered at the Watermill Center in 2015, redefining the way chicken, itself, is dished out to hungry patrons.
Elegant Affairs Creates Portable Spaghetti and Meatballs
By compacting spaghetti and placing singular meatballs on top, New York’s Elegant Affairs created a clean, to-the-point version of traditional spaghetti dinners. The mess-free food item gave patrons a micro approach to an age-old macro problem associated with messy spaghetti event dinners.
Occasions Caterers Make Salad Bites
That’s right: salad bites. Alongside spaghetti, salad is a notoriously difficult event dish to serve cleanly. By creating salad bites hors d’oeuvre, Occasions Caterers gave patrons fork-served eating options capable of tidying up the dish’s regular problems.
The Washington Human Society Offers Portable Hummus and Pita
Hummus is messy. Really messy. The Washington Humane society, however, offered a selection of hors d’oeuvres hummus and pita bites, celebrating their 2014 Fashion for Paws runway event.
Sometimes, alternative food options work well. They certainly revamp many age-old ideologies surrounding proper event food options. Check out more annual food options, and stay sharp with this year’s best event creations.
If you're going to be serving food at your event, it's important to choose menu items that everyone can and will eat. This will be hard if you try to make a different menu for all of the many common dietary variations. Instead, try combining gluten-free and vegan to create dishes that almost everyone will love. One of the most important things you'll need to keep in mind is the difference between vegetarian and vegan. Vegetarian dishes may include eggs, milk, and other products that ultimately come from animals. Vegan food, on the other hand, includes none of that. Only plants and plant products are allowed.
Choosing the Menu Items
The key to wowing a mixed-preference audience with vegan dishes is to avoid the bland, diet-type fare non-vegans often associate with this type of food. Instead, make sure the meals are tasty. Hire caterers that use spices and sauces liberally to pump up the flavor volume and add delicious-looking color to the dishes. Also, make sure that your catering company is used to cooking for vegans. Such companies will have plenty of delicious recipes already developed.
If You Can Field Two Menus, Offer Both Meat and Meat-Free Options
When you're providing lunch, meat-eaters likely won't be too put out if they don't get any meat in the meal. The same cannot be said of dinner. Unless your company gets marketing points from going all-vegan, offer a meat-included menu for this meal along with the vegan one. Note, however, that some vegans insist that their food be cooked in different areas than those used to cook meat! Fortunately, there are some caterers out there that will actually cater to even this demand.
Always Remember the Possibility of Allergies
The days when you could just serve a mystery sauce or meal are over. For reasons that are not quite understood, the incidence of life-threatening food allergies is higher than it was just 30 or 40 years ago. Therefore, you should always list potential food allergens. It's also important to know for certain exactly what is in everything, vegan or not.
This isn't to say that it's dangerous to serve meals. You simply need to know what is in all of the food so you and your staff can give accurate answers to those who ask about the ingredients.
With these things in mind, you'll be able to serve anything from a snack to a feast and have it be both safe and impressive. The final thing you'll need is a venue. If your event is in Miami, try our event and exhibition area here at Soho Studios. We offer up to 70,000 square feet that can be configured to meet all of your event needs.
Wynwood is one of the hottest districts in the Miami area. There is always something new happening or opening up in this area, which makes it hot year round. There are a number of eateries and bars in the area that make it one of the most popular places to be. Here’s a list of the newest places you may want to check out:
Alter was a semifinalist for the James Beard Award Best New Restaurant in 2016. The first solo restaurant from one of Food & Wine’s Best New Chefs for 2016, you won’t go wrong at Brad Kilgore’s spot. Check it out at 223 NW 23rd Street. 305-573-5996.
If you’re in the mood for tacos, Coyo is the place to go. Located in the heart of Wynwood, It’s more than a place to eat, but you can get your dance on all night. 2320 NW 2nd Avenue. 305-573-8228.
If Asian cuisine is your thing, you won’t be able to get enough of KYU. Imagine Asian barbeque at its best in a hip setting. You’ve found a winner. Find it at 251 NW 25th Street. 786-577-0150.
- The Salty Donut
On the weekends, it’s almost a given to have a sweet tooth. You can curb your cravings at The Salty Donut from pastry veteran Max Santiago. Right now it’s a cute little weekend pop-up, but the brick-and-mortar is soon to follow. Located at 29 NW 24th street. 305-925-8126.
- The Bar Next Door
If you’re looking for a late night munch-fest, you’ve found the right place in The Bar Next Door. A versatile menu promises something for everyone with a classy, yet casual ambience. Find it at 2519 NW 2nd Avenue. 305-748-2828.
- El Patio
Wynwood is known for its diverse community and at El Patio, you’ll get a taste of Colombia. Brainchild of Nicolas Hoyo, patrons can enjoy great cocktails, weekend late night dance parties, and happy hour specials all week long. Located at 167 NW 23rd street. 786-409-2241.
- The Wynwood Yard
Part of the culinary incubator, patrons can enjoy foods from four different restaurants that rotate. There’s Vibe 305, which features American food; Myumi, which is an omakase food truck; Arabian Knife, that will give you all the great cuisine of the Middle East; and Della Test Kitche, which is a plant-based healthy bowl concept. Find it at 56 NW 29th street.
These are just some of the hottest new places on the scene in Wynwood that will get your palate ready for fun and food. After your event with us, make sure to check out one of these new spots. There’s also Zak the Baker and a few other places you should check out too. If Miami’s known for one thing – it’s great food.