Wedding Food & Cake Tasting

What a night!

Our wedding food and cake tasting last night was more than I ever could have imagined.

From start to finish, we were continually impressed.

When we arrived, we met with Jennifer, the events manager at the Vinoy, to head to a private room to begin the tasting.

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The private room had two tables set up: One for us to enjoy our meal and another to show us how the tables for our wedding will look when fully set.

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Our tables will have floral centerpieces and other decor to add a romantic feel and bring in our wedding colors and will not have the gold charger plates.(We will also have chiavari chairs! 😉 )

After ooing and ahhing over the intricacies of the tableware, we sat down at our table to begin our meal.

Hors d’oeuvres

We began by trying five different hors d’oeuvres.

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Up first was a beef and artichoke bruschetta with olive aioli and a citrus shrimp with horseradish aioli.

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Both were tasty, but the beef stole the show!

Next we tried a ricotta fritter, duck wonton and a lobster spring roll that Jennifer added to our tasting menu as a surprise.

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The lobster spring roll got rave reviews from all of us but the other two were only meh.

In the end we actually chose both the beef and the lobster and two other hors d’oeuvres that we didn’t try but seemed appealing.


Next up were the appetizers.

First we tried black pepper shrimp, served with exotic fruit and avocado salad.

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We all loved the presentation of this one, but I was the only one who thought it was delicious. Ryan gave it the lowest score of the bunch, with a 6.5.

Our second option was a pan seared lump crab cake with sweet corn puree smoked bacon-tomato relish.

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I am so picky with crab cakes because my mom makes amazing crab cakes that are basically egg and crab only. I love really crabby crab cakes and these were delicious. They were packed full of crab meat and all of us agreed we found a winner!


The salad decision was a pretty easy one for me.

First up was a spring salad with bleu cheese, spiced pecans and pears.

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The second salad was a Boston Bibb salad with raspberries, brie fondant crostini and a port vinaigrette.

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Ryan and I both really do not like bleu cheese, but love brie, so the second salad was clearly the winner. It had a light and fresh taste that we all enjoyed.


To sample our main course, we were each provided with a sampler plate that included mini portions of three different entrees.

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The combinations we sampled included sea bass + filet, lobster + filet and herb roasted chicken + scallops.

We all agreed that the sea bass stole the show. It tasted moist, fresh and buttery. So, so good! We also loved the spinach Gruyere soufflé that came along with the lobster and filet combo, so we are going to add that into our main meal as well.

If the sea bass and filet can fit into our budget (based on how many “yes” RSVPs we we receive), that will be the winner!


Woohoo! Dessert!

I was so excited for the cake tasting portion of this meal, but was shocked at how hard it was to choose our cake!

First, we sampled a variety of different cake flavors.

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Then we tried a tray of fillings and a tray of mousse (which I forgot to photograph).

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In the end we decided on a red velvet cake with a white chocolate mousse filling and buttercream icing.

I could literally bathe in the buttercream icing. It reminded me so much of my mom’s homemade buttercream icing and I couldn’t get enough!

The Final Menu

If all things go according to plan, our wedding menu will look like this:

Hors d’oeuvres

Butler passed:

  • Beef and artichoke bruschetta with olive aioli
  • Lobster spring roll
  • Tuna, toasted peanut tartar, soy ginger gelee
  • Spinach and feta cheese purse


  • Fruit display: Colorful array of seasonal fruits and betties with key lime yogurt
  • Antipasto display: Marinated mushrooms, assorted olives, feta cheese, mozzarella, basil, grape tomatoes, roasted peppers and hard salamis


  • Pan seared lump crab cake, sweet corn puree, smoked bacon-tomato relish


  • Boston Bibb with raspberries, brie fondant crostini and port vinaigrette


  • Grilled filet and seared sea bass, spinach Gruyere soufflĂ©, Pesto green beans and carrots


  • Red velvet cake with white chocolate mousse filling and buttercream icing


I am so excited about our menu! I think it will be absolutely delicious! 😀


Today will be a day full of wedding errands! We have plans to hit up a bunch of different craft stores to assemble our escort card boards and check some other crafty projects off our wedding to to list.

Also on the agenda is visiting some local bakeries to taste some cookies that will play a part in our wedding favors.

See ya in a bit! 😀

As Jessie Spano Would Say…

I’m all packed up and ready to head to my parents’ house in St. Pete for the weekend.

All Packed!

(Ah! I’m wearing shorts!)

Ryan, Sadie and I are packing in my car and heading south because we have a very important activity on the agenda for this evening


As Jessie Spano would say, “I’m so excited! I’m so excited!” (Side note: Why is this the second time I’m referencing Jessie Spano on my blog in less than a month???)

I cannot explain to you how excited Ryan and I are for this event.

I know it’s common for most grooms to look forward to this activity and Ryan is no exception. The two of us are basically eating machines and have been asking about the cake tasting since we booked our venue back in November.

Tonight we finally get to try the food! This evening Ryan and I have plans with our mothers to attend our wedding food tasting at the Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf Club, where we’ll be getting married in less than two and a half months.

Tea Garden

(The above picture is of the Tea Garden, where our ceremony will be held. Our reception will be indoors in a ballroom.)

Prior to our tasting we were asked to select several items off the menu to sample, including four hors d’oeuvres (aka the hardest word to spell in the entire world), two appetizers, two salads, three entrees and three wedding cake flavors.

Tonight we will be trying the following items:

Hors d’oeuvres

  • Beef and artichoke bruschetta, olive aioli
  • Citrus shrimp, horseradish aioli
  • Ricotta fritter, minted tomato sauce
  • Port roasted duck, raspberry wonton


  • Black pepper smoked shrimp, exotic fruit, avocado salad
  • Pan seared lump crab cake, sweet corn puree, smoked bacon-tomato relish


  • Baby greens with maple roasted pears, Point Reyes bleu cheese, spiced pecans & champagne vinaigrette (we’re asking for a different cheese in place of the bleu)
  • Boston bibb with raspberries, brie fondant crostini & port vinaigrette


  • Herb roasted chicken breast & seared diver scallop with lemon orzo
  • Grilled filet & seared sea bass, Parmesan spinach soufflĂ©, pesto green beans, tomato ragout
  • Grilled filet & butter poached lobster, spinach Gruyere soufflĂ©, merlot demi


  • Red velvet cake
  • Two “surprise us” cakes

I’m pretty sure we’ll be calling in our second stomachs to get through these delicious dishes tonight!

Of Possible Interest

Question of the Afternoon

What is the single best dish you’ve ever had at a wedding?

I had the most delicious gnocchi in the world at a wedding Ryan and I attended last May. It was fantastic!