Posts Tagged barbeque

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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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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KF Appoints a New Head Chef!

So after 2 years of working with us we are pleased to announce that the fantastic John has agreed to be our full time head chef!
After working at various places over the years including Head Chef at the Seaview Hotel on the Isle of Wight, a 2 x AA Rosette restaurant that won dinning experience of the year in 2010; Sous Chef at Madishead, a 1 x AA Rosette restaurant in Norwich; Head Pastry Chef at Oneup, a 2 x AA Rosette restaurant, also in Norwich; and Chef at the award winning Lake Restaurant at St Michael’s Manor in St Albans; John brings a wealth of ideas and fantastic skills to our ever developing kitchen.
Dan & John worked on the new menus before Christmas and I’m pleased to say our critics have raved about them! Also all of the 2014 couples who have been in for tastings have loved the style and finesse that John adds to the delicious dishes.
Not only is he a great inspiring chef but an absolute pleasure to work with, bringing fun & laughter to the events.
Welcome aboard John, here’s to a successful, enjoyable year! Cheers!

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Busy Kitchens! New menus & tastings

Kitchens have been busy over the last week or so, with new menus being finalised! Dan & John are putting together the final touches to some delicious new dishes which will be added to our menus on the website in the next few weeks.
Some new choices include; Thai chicken and Mexican chicken with tequila burgers; on the BBQ menu, chicken liver parfait, brioche with spiced plum chutney; Proscuitto, basil, ricotta & cracked black pepper crepe; and beetroot gravaadlax, peppered mackerel, horseradish & watercress on the canapés menu.
Also fruit dusted meringue straws and Bakewell tart on the sweet canapés menu! Yum! Yum!
Can’t wait to try them all! Photographer coming in next week to take pictures, the website will look great with all these new shots!

If that wasn’t keeping us busy enough, we are meeting with all our lovely couples for tastings, tonight we are seeing the lovely Lucy & Kevin who have booked Tipis at Lavendar Farm next August. We will finalise their menu, timings for the day and help them prepare for their big day!

Friday sees us back for the 3rd year running at Parmiters School serving a 3 course meal for their annual Governors Dinner. School kitchens to cook in, but definitely not a school dinner!

BBQ last summer at the beautiful Lavendar Farm, more of these to come next year!
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Tipis open day, new menus!

This weekend saw us at Lavender Farm for Tipis open day. Despite the rain, it was so exciting talking to Potential brides & grooms about their special days! Every couple have such different ideas that get more and more interesting as the years go by! They came to view the Tipis up to see the great ambient space they provide, to discuss menu ideas with us and to sample our new evening food options. Spicy bean burgers with polenta, rosemary salt chips, pulled pork in barbecue sauce, Homemade beef & Stilton burgers and beer battered haddock n chips in bamboo cones. Easy no waste evening options that everyone enjoyed sampling. John barbecued despite the torrential rain and Daniel assisted me in chatting to excited couples about their ideas for 2014 weddings! Looks like we could be on for another busy summer! Can’t wait!
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Recommended wedding caterer for 2014?

Without being ‘how great are we!’ about us, I want this post to be honest and factual. Of course I’m baised, I event manage the majority of events for Kingfisher and I wouldn’t be in a job if we didn’t get the feedback we have this year!
So what do we do that’s different from other caterers? We take time to get to know our couples? It is so important to treat everyone individually, we do this by a series if meetings, free tastings, and being accessible in the run up to the big day. We spend time finalising the perfect menu for each individual event, no two are ever the same!, and we take the time to prepare and manage to make each couple feel unique! Dan and the kitchen team, john & MJ work so hard and are currently working on new and innovative menus for next season.
As I said I’m baised, but we gave had some great feedback this year from couples, family members and friends, and indeed from those events further bookings. This is just one from last weekend:
Hi Dan,

On behalf of us Tycer’s may I say a massive thank you for all your hard work. Laura was absolutely amazing and went above and beyond making sure everything went to plan once we arrived and did more than we ever expected. Meanwhile, you must have worked your socks off in the kitchen and we have been inundated with compliments on the food. I just wish I could manage to eat it all!!! It truly was wonderful and the food to me was a big part of getting the day right.

We will highly recommend you to anyone who will listen.

All the best for your future events.

Mr and Mrs Tycer.

Cheesy maybe? But it follows at trend over the year, our remit works, we hope to continue this into 2014. I see no reason why not, we have great chefs, a good hardworking front of house team and above all, we all love our job, we go to a wedding every weekend!!

This is our new promo leaflet, new menus, pictures from actual events this year, no stock shots here! If you would like one, please contact me laura@kingfishercaterers.co.uk

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