As 2022 approaches, wedding planning for many ceremonies slated to take place next year — including those who had their nuptials delayed by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic — is kicking into high gear. And, as it does, many brides, grooms and planners alike will have their ear to the ground for top trends and ideas sure to make their wedding as unique and stylish as it is of-the-moment. Here, we take a look at five of the top food trends — from low-waste to plant-based — to consider bringing to your wedding catering menu in 2022.
- Cocktail hour only
Micro-weddings were, arguably, the top wedding trend of the last year and a half, as Covid-19 restrictions resulted in smaller gatherings, more intimate ceremonies and, in many cases, completely remote celebrations. And couples and planners alike stepped up to the plate, planning — and pulling off — completely unique, remarkable weddings on an unprecedentedly small scale! Because of this, the appeal of the micro-wedding has skyrocketed, as couples are now aware that small celebrations can be as incredible, unique, and glamorous as large-scale ones.
And because small, intimate ceremonies often lend themselves to a more informal vibe, catering menus that are cocktail-hour only — think: passed hors d’oeuvres, small plates and apps, and bite-sized desserts in place of a cake — will remain de rigueur in 2022. If this approach is stoking your appetite, consider a late-afternoon or evening ceremony, so your guests can enjoy small bites and signature cocktails after sundown.
- Grazing tables
In keeping with the low-key, informal theme, grazing tables — long, help-yourself arrangements of charcuterie, cheeses, fruits, crudites and other snacks and bites — are likely to remain popular in 2022. Grazing tables are great for an evening ceremony without a formal, sit-down dinner, as above; as a cocktail-hour offering before dinner; or even as a late-night food option! Plus, they’re an excellent opportunity to highlight local cheese-makers, bakeries and charcuterie producers.
As more of us adopt more waste-conscious, environmentally friendly habits in our day-to-day lives — like using canvas tote bags, shopping local where possible, and carrying reusable coffee mugs — it just makes sense that this approach would translate to weddings. Choose fabric napkins and tablecloths instead of their disposable counterparts, and opt out of any plastics — like swizzle sticks or disposable glassware — in favour of washable, reusable items. You can also get creative with decor, like using plantable seed-paper for table markers and living, take-home plants or repurposed, vintage items as centrepieces rather than disposable cut flowers. In addition, make sure beverages — from sodas and sparkling waters to beer and liquor — is served from recyclable cans and bottles, rather than disposable plastic containers.
Another trend that’s in-line with increasing environmental consciousness! As it becomes more widely understood that reducing our consumption of meat and other animal byproducts can help reduce greenhouse gases, consider swapping out beef sliders for plant-based sandwich bites, and replace shrimp cocktail with delicious seasonal crudites and plant-based dips, such as hummus or baba ghanoush. For dinner, look to countries and regions whose traditional cuisines are less meat-heavy than many western menus, such as India, Africa, and the Middle East.
- Edible flowers
Okay, so this trend isn’t literally eco-friendly — but, aesthetically, it can help reflect your boho, environmentally friendly wedding theme! Edible flowers can be applied to cakes and cupcakes, used to garnish salads or cocktails, or dried and used as a tea! Plus, you can incorporate dried flowers into your wedding favours: consider a dried sachet of lavender, or an elegant preserved bouquet for your guests to enjoy for years to come.