I had mentioned how we had gone to Las Vegas for a destination wedding for our son and new daughter-in-law. With the economics involved with such a wedding, my Bride and I were the only ones to attend the nuptials. Since this was a second wedding for both of them, my Bride wanted to share the event with some relatives and friends on a smaller scale. That meant she was going to be the caterer and she was all geeked up for it. She found a hall that would allow her to be the caterer as long as they handled the bar, and we had to do the policing of the hall afterwards.
My Bride was in her glory, she was going to use equipment that she had bought, but had never used, and may I say that our house looked like a warehouse depository for all sorts of kitchen accoutrements that only caterers should possess. We were having a Sunday afternoon dinner and our house on Saturday night looked like it was overrun by the ghosts of caterers past. There were piles of cardboard cartons that had been unpacked and all of the equipment was washed and ready to go. I think that evening I carved up eleven roasted chickens in preparation. She was making a dinner with guidelines for guests that were arriving with special dietary restrictions. She made her “famous” Caesar Salad, she attempted for the first time to make Fettuccini Alfredo (and as a side note some people thought that the dish came from an Italian restaurant that many of her relatives dine at, so that made her very happy), Armenian Pilaf, Steamed Broccoli, and one of the in-laws was making his musticcoli dish. We had roasters and an array of chafing dishes all ready to go for the big day. Sunday morning I did not have a Bride, but a Whirling Dervish and all I could hear in the back of my mind was Katchaturian’s Saber Dance. Amazingly, I somehow got everything packed into our sedan with every dish covered and packed so firmly that nothing shifted, even the Wedding Cake survived, of course with all of the table decorations and balloons one could not see out the back window, so the side view mirrors were a blessing and the hall was almost an hour away. We both knew that we would need a drink once we got to the hall and unloaded everything and we were met by the happy couple and some other volunteers who were waiting for all of the table decorations and to get all of the food ready.
There was a table for the buffet, a sweet table and a table was ready for gifts for the couple. We had to get all the plates, utensils, napkins, and service equipment set up in a logical manner. Then there were the spices, the cheeses and all of the small sides that were necessary. Breads, breadsticks, butter and all of the sundry items to make the dinner complete, had to be unpacked and presented as well. Then there were the two coffee urns, and then a pot to make hot water for people that enjoyed tea, not to mention the assorted paraphernalia that goes with that beverage table. When dinners for thirty are done at home, all of this is not even thought about, but when you are doing this in another venue and the count is around a hundred, one has to marvel at the work and foresight that the professional caterers do. Did I say that my Bride was in her element? Food and chaos were how it appeared, but she did a stellar job and I was looking forward to the point where she would finally be able to relax and enjoy the moment. She also smiled at me, while I was eating and said that it was good to actually see me eating at a wedding reception, as I am always checking to see if MSG is being used by caterers and if it is, then I must stick to just a few dishes for the evening, and in fact, I normally stop and eat before going to a wedding, just to be safe. This affair reminded me of the weddings that I attended in my teens, when families would do this for their children, before everyone tried to outdo the last wedding that they attended.
The hall was a private civic organization and they only offered generic bulk type wine and beer, and I could not bring any wine with me, as if there would have been any space in the sedan to put it anyways. There was Foxhorn Vineyards South Eastern Australia Merlot NV in the handy magnum size bottles, and I have to admit that it tasted better then I had expected, there was no nuance or craft to the wine, but it did taste like a Merlot. Then there was Foxhorn Vineyards American White Zinfandel NV and I have to admit that this was the first time that I had seen American in the description for a wine, and I admit that I did not try any of this, but I knew that it would be popular for the segment of the people that wanted a white sweet wine. The third wine that we had was for the toast and we were serving mimosas for the dinner and it was Andre Spumante NV. Andre Spumante was the first sparkling wine that E. & J. Gallo Winery created back in the Sixties, when they first started making wines that were not of the generic jug wines. For mimosas this was more then adequate and I do believe that I spent most of the afternoon drinking mimosas and watching my Bride in her glory. Actually I am not sure who enjoyed the reception more, the happy couple or my Bride.