Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Taste of Aberdeen Manor a Huge Success!

Our future clients, many of them with one or both sets of parents, all declared the party on Sunday a roaring success. Myself, I wish that all the folks that came to the fall party could have come to this one. We learned so much from the last tasting party.

Many of our clients think that this party is something we have done for years and years. Actually, this was only about the 3rd or 4th time we have done this as a tasting party. Consequently, we are still working the bugs out. Each time is different, and we have to learn from them. I think though, that we have finally hit on a winning formula.

This time, we split the buffet up into stations. We had chicken entrees in one corner with sides that went well with the chicken dishes. In another corner we had beef entrees with sides. The other two corners were fish entrees and pork entrees. The appetizers were passed by our servers through the room. What a difference it made!

Preparing for this party is very different from preparing for a reception too. Our kitchen staff prepared about 14 different entrees, as well as vegetables, starches, and salads to go with them. In addition there were hors d‘oeuvres passed, over a dozen different items.

Now let’s think about this. At a typical wedding, we have either two or three hors d’oeuvres, one or two entrees, one salad, and one or two starches and vegetables. So they were producing about 14 times as many types of foods as we normally do. Granted we were doing smaller quantities, but the variety and number of different items makes this a VERY difficult event to produce. In addition, it ALL went out of the kitchen at the same time! Usually at a reception we would pass the hors d’oeuvres for an hour, then serve the salads, then 20 minutes later serve the entrĂ©e plates, and then we are pretty much done, other than plating the wedding cake. The sheer quantity of food that had to go out of that kitchen, all at one time on Sunday, was astounding!

Our kitchen staff did an AWESOME job! They worked long, hard hours to make this happen, and it turned out great. As with everything, we are still learning, and we have decided to do the steaks differently in order to give our clients a better idea of how they are at an actual reception. We were trying to be ready for the onslaught of guests, so we had the steaks in a hot box. Oops. When they went into the hot box, they were perfect; juicy and tender, pinky-red in the middle. Well, they continued to cook in the hot box, and so all but the very first ones out, were overcooked. We’ve solved this issue though, and at the next party, the steaks will be perfect. It will involve an additional person in the kitchen, but it’s worth it to be able to really show our clients what those steaks are like, because they are beautiful and delicious when we have a plated dinner.

The learning curve has been a journey for us. I think we finally have the tasting party worked through to where it really does give our clients a realistic idea of our delicious food. We don’t want our clients to be stressed about anything—least of all, the food at their reception. I hope that anyone that has concerns or worries about any aspect of their wedding or reception, will call me, or come see me, so we can talk about it.

If any of you have suggestions, ideas, constructive criticisms, thoughts, or anything that is on your mind about our tasting party, PLEASE share! You can post comments anonymously if you wish. We can only improve if we listen to what you are saying. And we WILL LISTEN!

We want this party to be fun, educational, and delicious! Last Sunday definitely was! More important than what I think---WHAT DID YOU THINK?

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