Archive for February, 2014

Looking for a wedding venue with a difference?

I’ve been out on the road today visiting new venues and have found two great locations!

Firstly, I visited Tudor Oaks Lodge, near Baldock, just of the A1 and then Church Farm, Ardeley, near Stevenage, both offering different remits but both have a lot going for them as a wedding venue.

Tudor Oaks Lodge have refurbished the The Norman Suite which seats up to 225 people, it’s a barn style suite with a beautiful gallaried balcony floor overlooking the dance floor. It has a lovely courtyard with seating outside, which will be lovely in bloom during the summer months! 15 rooms are also available including a bridal suite, to make the perfect overnight stay.

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Church Farm offers a totally different experience as a venue and they endeavour to be flexible and accommodating to what you are looking for. Picturesque views across rolling countryside set in a real life working farm! Marquees can be set in one of 3 fields with music, campfires and even have space for over night campers!

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There is more information on both their websites, and hopefully we will be catering at both over the summer, so I can blog some real event photos!

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Top tips for our couples to be! Tip No 1!

Tip 1; Personalise your big day

Through the wedding season we cater at a wedding almost every weekend, and over the years I can honestly say that no two are the same! Or even remotely similar!

Making it personal, with little touches of your life together makes it much more special and given the freedom of having your wedding in a marquee or tipi allows you to start with that blank sheet.

So, let your personality shine through on your wedding day with these tried and tested ideas;

1. Decorate an area of your reception with pictures of you both growing up. It will make a fanstastic talking point, lots of couples do this, it works very well.

2. Personalise your wedding day menu! Perhaps use local produce to where you’re getting married or choose cuisine that has a personal memory tied to it. Met at a beach party in Thailand? Serve fish and chips and Thai noodles in boxes, Got engaged in Italy? Then serve a delicious pasta dish. We have plenty of menu choices and can tailor make that menu to suit you perfectly.

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3. Welcome drinks can also symbolise you both, we had a couple from New Zealand who flew in authentic New Zealand beers and a couple who got married in the late Autumn and collected old jam jars to serve ginger beer cocktails, these were dispensed from big glass jars, which were placed on upturned logs and decorated with apples, looked fab!

4. Name your tables after places that are special to you, such as the place where you first met or where the magic proposal occurred. Or use photos of the two of you in the special places to decorate the tables.

5. Hand-written place names will add a personal touch to your day. While you’re in the handwriting mood, take the time to write a special few guests a thank-you note for all their help in the lead-up to your special day. A couple last year had an envelope with a thank-you for each guest hung on rope with pegs, this also doubled up as their table plan and seating arrangements.

6. Incorporate something that’s special to you both, one of our couples played in a drumming band, Batala, it was a fantastic sound and very noisy, set the pace for the day!

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7. Run the theme throughout the day, Katie & Dan got married in a village hall, decorated it with bunting, arrived in a camper van and had desserts supplied by friends and family of Apple pies, cheesecakes, fairy cakes.

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8. Another good idea to incorporate your guests is what James & Hayley did by getting their guests to write wish messages for them on a big board, they even make this very personal quirky sign!

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9. Recruit talented friends and family – maybe one could sing while you sign the register and another could make your cake.

10. Finally this should really be at number 1! As this is by far my personal best! Last summer one of our grooms Ed stole the show with a 1000 origami paper cranes folded individually by himself which he hung from the tent with fishing wire, the effect was stunning! It is a Japanese legend, that promises to bring eternal good luck for the couple. It took him almost a year to make them! That’s dedication!

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I hope that’s given you a few ideas, I’m sure there will be more great personal touches over this summer, I can’t wait to see them!

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Kingfisher, Tudor Oaks Lodge! Busy busy!

Even though the Wedding Season is still a few months away, you maybe mistaken by thinking we were all relaxing! But far from it! the Kingfisher team have been very busy indeed! Working closely with the new owners of the beautiful Tudor Oaks Lodge in Stotfold, Bedfordshire, getting ready for the opening this Thursday!
Under new management, the 15th century coaching inn has been revamped to offer a place to enjoy a meal or drink or a special stay in one of the en-suite bedrooms situated around the beautiful Mediteranean courtyard.

The grounds also offer space for Wedding Receptions, Bar Mitzvah, Birthday, Anniversary or Party. The Tudor Room seats up to 80 people – set in the main house, and The Norman Suite seats up to 225 people – barn style suite with a beautiful galleried balcony floor overlooking the dance floor.

Dan and John have worked hard getting the catering side up and running and have put together some beautiful dishes from a mouth watering 3 course menu to delicious sides and bar snacks, traditional burgers and steaks, to a Sunday carvery to make anyone want to go out for lunch and not doing the washing up!

Some of the menus choices are;
Starters:
Beetroot Gravadlax, Celeriac and Coriander Remoulade Capers, Lemon Oil and Ciabatta,
Or, Chicken Liver and Madeira Parfait, Toasted Sourdough, Cornichons, Red Onion Chutney, Or, Warm Caramelised Onion, Roasted Butternut and Haloumi Tart, Herb Salad and Rocket Pesto.
Mains:
Braised Shank of Lamb served on Sticky Root Vegetables and Herb Potatoes,
Or Crispy Pork Belly, Curly Kale, Chantennay Carrots, Sage Butter Lyonnaisse, Cider Jus Or Pan Roasted Chicken Breast, Roasted Sweet Potato and Parsnips, Green Beans, Pancetta and Madeira Jus.
Deserts:
Dark Chocolate Delice, Walnut Brittle and Vanilla Ice Cream
Or Lemon and Lime Tartlet, Glazed Berries and Crème Fraiche
Or White Chocolate and Coconut Cheesecake, Pistachios and Mango Sorbet

For the full menu please see http://www.tudoroakslodge.com

To add to the fun Friday night party nights are taking place with the first this Friday! They are perfect for those celebrating a special occasion or those who just fancy a night out. Ticket price will include a KF buffet meal. Party nights will on occasion include Greek nights, tribute nights & more!!

So without a doubt I’m sure it will be a great success, the very best of luck to everyone involved!

I’m sure I will be blogging more pics and write ups from events there over the coming months, watch this space!

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Website finally finished!

We have finally finished the website! it now has pictures of all our new food and menus, with great testimonials and new venue information.
We are very pleased with the result, it shows a more personnal side of us, no stock shots here, just genuine pictures taken at actual weddings and events from last year!
I will try and update them with some of the chefs and staff in action over the year, although they are a very outgoing bunch, they do get a bit camera shy!

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Buffet with that personal touch

Catering at weddings throughout the summer is fun and very rewarding, being part of someones most memorable day really does have that ‘feel good’ factor!

But equally as rewarding are the funeral wakes we have attended in recent weeks. We offer a personal, professional and discrete catering service for families and their loved ones at a very difficult time.

Recently we catered for a family who had lost their most precious Grandma and the last thing they really wanted to think about was catering for everyone who came back to the house. We arrived, set up the food, catered all the drinks, cleared up and left, taking that stress away. It was something the family had never considered before but were very complimentary of us and glad that they had. Hopefully we will cater for them again in happier circumstances.

This is a sample of what we can offer, a selection of sandwiches, homemade sausage rolls, caramelised onion and goats cheese quiches, mini BLT croissants, followed by chocolate brownies and mini fruit tartlets.

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