Everyone wants their wedding to be a unique, one-of-a-kind experience that no one will forget. Food seems like an obvious place to stand out. But the cost of a customized reception menu might be more than you budgeted for. We’ll show you some simple and cost-effective ways to customize a pre-packaged wedding menu that turns heads and entices taste buds.

After years of delivering memorable weddings, Steve Guagliardi, Catering Sales & Event Planning Manager, Rich’s Catering & Special Events, shares some of his favorite tricks to customize a menu on a budget.

“Passed hors d’oeuvres are the most cost-effective way to customize,” suggests Steve. “Some subtle changes may have no cost increase at all. Taking an hors d’oeuvre that’s already on the menu and changing some ingredients will give the illusion of a fully customized menu.”

If you want to add something to a pre-packaged menu without going over budget, Steve suggests adding on an appetizer or pasta course to increase the caliber of the event for less than $8 per person. These small bites pack big impact!

Rich’s is always open to customizing menus for couples. Steve sees couples infusing their personal preferences and flair in the late night station.

“The late station should be about the couple,” says Steve. “Some couples have asked us to create a station that pays tribute to the couple’s home cities, like Buffalo meets Toronto with Buffalo chicken poutine. We have also taken both of their favorite foods and merged them in an original dish like a beef on weck stuffed pierogi. The options are endless!”

On the other hand, there are also areas where couples traditionally indulge that can easily withstand some subtle cutbacks without sacrificing the overall impression of your big day. Flowers are a big ticket item that can handle a bit of “pruning.” Slightly smaller floral centerpieces will hardly be noticed. Non-floral centerpieces can come in at half the cost and be the “something different” you’re looking for. Rich’s has four non-floral options that can save you up to $45 per table.

If you’re working on a budget (and you should be), Rich’s has a wedding package to meet all your needs with options ranging from $59 to $90 per person (before tax and service charge).

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