If both couples and their families are vegetarian then having delicious vegetarian food is straightforward. You can experiment between Gujarati, Punjabi dishes etc and go with a mixture of traditional and modern food. It is also a great memory to offer non-vegetarians some fabulous Indian food in keeping with your traditions and culture.
If there is a mixture of food, this is a little more complicated. I would advise considering a full vegetarian menu, it would provide something different to the non-vegetarians and give you better value for money.
If you do decide to offer a mixture, here is a bit of advice:
Be crystal clear about which food is vegetarian and which is not. At so many weddings, much time is wasted on guessing/checking/not trying certain foods for those who are strict vegetarians.
If you know certain tables are vegetarian only, it makes more sense to only offer vegetarian food to those tables. Many people not only don’t eat meat but they like to avoid being near it altogether.
Make sure the catering company and waiters/waitresses are well aware of coping with any questions about the food. With your help, they should know what is in each vegetarian dish, and what is gluten-free, dairy-free/vegan, or has no onion or garlic in. Getting this right would save time all round especially for certain guests.
As an indian wedding toastmaster one of the key people I will be liaising with are the caterers. Everything from timings, special requirements, changes to schedules and key messages will be very important to a toastmaster and the caterers.
Before you commit to a wedding caterer, as an Asian wedding toastmaster, I would recommend going to a tasting with several different caterers in one day. It will give you a good feel about the right type of caterer for you and of course, give you a taste of what they will offer. It’s always worth taking parents along too as many of your guests will be the same age as your parents and your menu will cater for a variety of different people.
Do not be afraid to look at reviews and raise any issues at initial meetings. Ask whether you will get a choice of catering manager rather than simply one being allocated. It is a big difference if the catering manager has worked at your wedding venue before and if he/she is experienced then any problems can be dealt with in a timely manner.
A wedding caterer will be one of your biggest costs so it is always worth debating and haggling about the cost and what is included. No wedding is the same in terms of menu, location and date. If price is not negotiable, then see if extra items or dishes can be added to your menu. Ask to see images of what your food will look like when it is served. And the biggest thing I would recommend is to speak to previous couples and your wedding venue who used the same caterer. They can offer behind the scenes advice and recommendations of what went well and what to look out for.
Your catering manager will often check with a wedding toastmaster on the night as a wedding toastmaster is in a great position to look across the venue and see if things are going to plan. A toastmaster can often provide ‘live feedback’ during service at a wedding lunch or evening reception so things can be improved or rectified right away.
And finally do provide the contact details to the caterer and the catering manager so your toastmaster can introduce themselves before your big day – it makes a difference and a good impression!