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Quick Tips and Useful Information

Weddings at Twin Oaks offers help to plan and execute the perfect wedding reception. We would be nothing if it weren’t for the great relationships we’ve forged with many of San Diego’s best event vendors. We’ve worked with each of these companies many times (and many other great companies not on that list) and can’t stress how important the venue and vendor selection process is. Once you’ve found a Ceremony & Reception Venue in San Diego, the typical order of selecting vendors is as follows:  
  • Wedding Planner, Wedding DJ, Photographer/Videographer
  • Dresses, Invitations, Flowers, Officiant
  • Photo Booth, Event Lighting, Party Rentals, Cake
  • Favors, Wedding Party Thank You Gifts, etc…
  Obtaining your marriage license in San Diego County is pretty simple. All you have to do is bring your fiance to one of the San Diego County Clerk’s Offices and fill out some preliminary paperwork. You can download the standard marriage application HERE. Once your application is processed and approved, you will then bring that certificate to your wedding ceremony. Both of you, your wedding officiant, and witnesses can sign it after the conclusion of your wedding ceremony. Simply, return a copy to the City Clerk and your authorized copy will arrive back in a few weeks! Your San Diego Wedding experience will then be completed!

Archive for the ‘Cuisine’ Category

San Diego Weddings Information

Quick Tips and Useful Information

Weddings at Twin Oaks offers help to plan and execute the perfect wedding reception.

We would be nothing if it weren’t for the great relationships we’ve forged with many of San Diego’s best event vendors. We’ve worked with each of these companies many times (and many other great companies not on that list) and can’t stress how important the venue and vendor selection process is.

Once you’ve found a Ceremony & Reception Venue in San Diego, the typical order of selecting vendors is as follows:

 

  • Wedding Planner, Wedding DJ, Photographer/Videographer
  • Dresses, Invitations, Flowers, Officiant
  • Photo Booth, Event Lighting, Party Rentals, Cake
  • Favors, Wedding Party Thank You Gifts, etc…

 

Obtaining your marriage license in San Diego County is pretty simple. All you have to do is bring your fiance to one of the San Diego County Clerk’s Offices and fill out some preliminary paperwork. You can download the standard marriage application HERE. Once your application is processed and approved, you will then bring that certificate to your wedding ceremony. Both of you, your wedding officiant, and witnesses can sign it after the conclusion of your wedding ceremony. Simply, return a copy to the City Clerk and your authorized copy will arrive back in a few weeks! Your San Diego Wedding experience will then be completed!

Choosing Your San Diego Wedding Reception Meal Style

The first big choice you’ll make as you plan your dinner is how to serve your guests. Back in the day, couples pretty much had two choices: a sit-down dinner or a buffet. But nowadays, there are so many more options to explore when deciding how to serve your reception meal. To help you figure out the best serving style for your celebration, we’ve outlined the five most popular meal options, along with some pros and cons for each.

San Diego Reception Meal Style: Plated Dinner
What it is: A plated, sit-down dinner is considered the most traditional and formal option as each guest is individually served a plated meal. Typically, guests are served three courses: appetizer, entrée, and dessert (sometimes a fourth course—an intermezzo or amuse bouche—is added before the entrée). Guests are usually given a choice of two (or three) entrées, which they select beforehand; another option is to serve each guest two proteins, such as meat and fish, on one plate (sometimes called a “duet” plate).

Why we love it: Everyone at the table gets their food at the same time. Also, by knowing the selections beforehand, food costs will be lower than a buffet or family-style meal. You can spread out activities (like dances and toasts) in between each course to keep guests engaged and maintain a nice energy throughout the meal service.

Things to consider: A sit-down meal requires more servers, both due to the plating in the kitchen and to serve the meal to guests. So the staffing portion of your catering bill will be higher. Also, the food options are limited to what you picked during your tasting, so if you have a lot of picky eaters in attendance, there’s a chance they may not eat everything on their plate.

San Diego Reception Meal Style: Buffet
What it is: Food stations are set up on long tables where guests can walk along and serve themselves. Another option is to have servers stationed behind the buffet table serving each dish. A buffet-style reception is usually considered the most casual style of meal service.

Why we love it: Fewer servers are needed with a buffet reception, which means you may save some money on your catering-staff charges (though you still need staffers to tend to the buffet, and waiters to provide water and wine to the tables). Buffets make it easier and more cost effective to provide guests with a variety of choices, which is helpful since many people have so many types of allergies and dietary restrictions. This service style also promotes mingling and interacting among guests.

Things to consider: Guests have to serve themselves and carry their own plates, which may not be as elegant as you would like. Buffets also require larger quantities of food since people tend to eat more when they serve themselves, which will add to your food costs.

San Diego Reception Meal Style: Food Stations
What it is: A station-style reception is one where the food is spread out among different “stations” throughout the reception space. For example, there may be one area that is a carving station, a raw bar, a tapas station, a dessert station, and so forth. The portions served at each station are typically on the smaller side, usually requiring just two or three bites to finish.

Why we love it: Creative food stations and presentations are crowd-pleasers; guests will also appreciate the wide variety of dishes and the interactive element. Since the stations are spread out throughout the space, guests won’t likely have to wait in line (for very long, at least). At cook-to-order stations, guests can request exactly how they would like their dish prepared. This meal style also promotes a lot of interaction among guests.

Things to consider: Your reception site will need ample room to accommodate the extra space food stations require. You will also need more chefs if you have interactive stations (i.e. pasta, carving stations, etc.), adding to your food bill.

San Diego Reception Meal Style: Family-Style *TREND ALERT*
What it is: Popular in 2014 and continuing into 2015, Family Style is similar to a sit-down dinner, with guests assigned to specific dinner tables and waiters to bring the food to the table. However, large portions of the dinner offerings are placed on each table on serving platters for guests to fill their own plates (it’s just like sitting down for dinner at home with your family!). This popular San Diego Wedding trend reminds us of home-style family dinners we all grew up with.

Why we love it: Guests can help themselves to as much food as they’d like. The mealtime will be very efficient since guests can begin eating immediately after serving themselves. This service style also promotes interacting and conversations among guests.

Things to consider: Family-style dining requires ample space on your dinner tables for the various platters and dishes. You may need to increase your budget for rental items to account for additional platters and serving pieces.

San Diego Reception Meal Style: Cocktail-Style Reception *TREND ALERT*
What it is: Another more recent trend, a cocktail-style reception features hors d’oeuvres and other small bites offered all evening long in lieu of a sit-down meal. The hors d’oeuvres are usually one- or two-bite portions and can be a combination of hot and cold options. The hors d’oeuvres can be passed by servers or stationary for guests to get themselves. This reception style is a good choice for couples wanting a more casual atmosphere and for their guests to really mingle and meet each other.

Why we love it: If your venue is small, cocktail receptions allow you to have more people since you won’t need dinner tables and chairs for every guest. They’re also typically shorter than a sit-down meal, and they allow you and your groom to easily circulate throughout the room and chat with everyone. Also, since you’re not serving a main entrée, your food costs could potentially be more affordable.

Things to consider: Some guests may not have attended a cocktail wedding reception, so there may be some confusion if they are expecting a full meal (which is why it’s important to word your invitation clearly, like this: “Please join us for a cocktail reception after the ceremony”). However, while your food costs might be lower, your guests will likely drink more than at a dinner reception, so your liquor costs might go up. Since most people won’t be seated, some guests will have trouble seeing events like the first dance.