Couples can find it quite stressful to accommodate wedding guests special dietary requirements. There are more and more people with allergies, food intolerances and digestive problems. As someone with all of these problems, I know how hard it can be when you are invited to a catered event and I hate having to fill in the list of my special dietary requirements….I always feel like I’m putting the organiser out. So it’s not only the people doing the inviting that feel uncomfortable when discussing these things!
The good news is that chefs are used to dealing with these requests and they can make sure that everyone is catered for without any stress. I’m getting much more confident when eating out and now ask what certain dishes contain; it is amazing how helpful waiting staff and chefs are. It’s much better than the time I went to an awards ceremony a few years ago and was too embarrassed to tell them of my allergies, I only ate one bread bun all evening because I couldn’t eat any of the 3 course meal that I had paid a small fortune for!
When we get married I’m going to have a different meal to everyone else so that I’m not making my guests eat my mushroom, dairy, spice and tomato free diet! But on the plus side, this will also cater for some of my guests who also have an intolerance.
In order to accommodate for everyone’s needs there are a few simples things you can do.
- Make sure you include a place for special dietary requirements on your RSVP cards. If you are not including RSVP cards with your invitations, make sure you ask people to provide their dietary requirements when they reply. If you know what your menu is when you send out the invitations, you may want to include it in the invitation information to help people decide; however this may cause people to say they have a requirement if they don’t like the menu you have chosen.
- Talk to your venue and/or caterer about what they can offer to accommodate any special requirements. You may need wheat-free, gluten-free, diary-free, nut-free, vegetarian or vegan meals. Ask them what alternatives they can offer if anyone has these requirements.
- Buy a gluten-free cake to serve to any guests with intollerances. This will not only make them feel truly welcome but will also be something they remember about your big day. You can get a gluten-free cake from many high street shops or ask your cake maker to make a small gluten-free cake to match your main cake.
- Once everyone have RSVP’d with their requirements, make a table plan and mark who is having what on it. Give a copy of this to your venue and/or caterers. This will make sure everyone gets what they have ordered without any fuss.
Have you got any special dietary requirements? Have you been to a wedding where the couple met all your requirements? I’d love to hear your stories good and bad.