What’s Cooking in 2019 – Our Favourite Caterers Tell All

Booking More Weddings At Your Venue

Booking More Weddings At Your Venue

Well I don’t know about you but I’m rather missing all the festive foodie delights this month, so I thought it only fitting to cheer our palettes as we navigate the rest of winter with a two-part feature on what’s going to be cooking in your wedding kitchens during 2019.

I asked a selection of my favourite old and new caterers, with a collective tonne of wedding experience, to share their predictions for what’s hot and in demand right now when it comes to wedding food.

Edibles are oh-so-important in every wedding day and couples are increasingly food-conscious in all its guises so, as a smart venue, you need to ensure your offering of eats tempts the taste buds to ensure you create the wow factor and secure those coveted bookings.

It’s important that you regularly review your menus, look to inspire with new workable additions and ensure you stay up to date with current lifestyle and eating trends, whether that’s with your in-house team or by reviewing your recommended supplier list of catering experts.

And don’t forget to check out the websites of these brilliant caterers if you’re looking for new additions to your venue offerings – they all cater to  client events of course but some of them offer a food consultancy service too should you want some support to develop your in-house options – do get in touch with either myself or directly.

Now to the feast …


Sarah, Anthony and team from Oxfordshire based caterers, Indulgence, know their stuff when it comes to bespoke, elegant weddings. They are in-house and preferred caterers for some of Oxfordshire’s best-known venues and rightly so – they are at the top of their wedding game.

Indulgence predicts the following for 2019:

A Buffet Jim, but not as you know it! As the demand for a more casual approach to wedding catering continues to grow, feasting will be back and big in 2019. This time moving from served at the table to the Farmhouse sharing table. Make no mistake this is no 1970’s dodge buffet, but something fit for the Instagram generation. Think a rustic big wooden table groaning with platters laden with amazing vibrant salads and Grilled meats. But this will only work in the right venue with the right laid back vibe.

Rustic buffet style sharing table | Kelly Chandler Consulting

Vegan – Know your Onions! Veganism took 2018 menus by storm and we only see this as an amazing opportunity in 2019. It is shaping our offer and increasing creativity. It is no longer enough to just know where your beef comes from, you now need to know your carrots and onions too! With the obvious health benefits of a plant-based diet, clients no longer see Vegan or Vegetarian as second best if you are creative with your offer. This refreshing change in perception and attitude brings with it the opportunity to increase your GP margins, something that has been very difficult to do in recent years with food inflation.


Low and Slow, Wood Fired & Smoked – Slow food is moving fast, 24-hour beef and fire pit lamb will feature for us. Slowly cooked over the embers with an amazing depth of flavour and the added bonus of bringing some real theatre to your offer.

Slow cooked meat steak | Kelly Chandler Consulting

Spice It Up –  Chefs will be pushing boundaries and mixing it up in 2019 just as much as their mixologist buddies. On-trend super spices will continue to dominate, Cardamom, Ginger, Cinnamon, Acacia and of course Turmeric. Amazing Health benefits and creative flavour bombs, what’s not to like here?!

Cardamom, Peaches with Ginger Cinnamon Acacia | Kelly Chandler Consulting

Bowled Over – Bowl food will get a much-needed update in 2019. It’s still an amazing way to entertain your guests but expect creativity to rise here. Out with mainstream Bangers and Mash and Shepherd’s pie, in with Donburi, Poke and Lakas.

Poke bowl | Kelly Chandler Consulting


Dani May-McCallum is the owner of the newly launched exciting catering company, The Curated Kitchen, specialising in luxurious feasts, grazing tables and afternoon teas for informal weddings & events in Surrey, Sussex and beyond.

Dani says:

“This year sustainability is sure to be an even bigger consideration for our couples and I’m sure we are going to see a rise in requests for more organic, locally sourced produce, with veganism high on the agenda.

We’ll see the continuation of couples seeking an alternative to formal catering but 2019 couples are looking for luxurious alternatives that still creates an unforgettable sense of occasion.

Sociable dining experiences such as grazing tables and sharing platters are set to be a key trend for the year ahead but they will need to be less rustic than we have seen before.

Food will play a bigger part in the overall styling – show-stoppingly styled platters and grazing tables, laden with locally sourced, organic produce and piled high with beautiful handmade treats and delicacies to create a focal point and discussion point.

Luxury sharing table of cold meat and cheese | Kelly Chandler Consulting


Our dear friends at Caper & Berry are passionate foodies who deliver unique events with panache and personality.  I’ve worked with them on all sorts of wedding briefs in private homes, in tents, in fields and at leading light venues such as Hedsor House and Somerley House respectively.   Here is what they think will be in demand on your wedding plates in 2019 and beyond.

Ottolenghi sharing – 2018 was the return of the traditional three-course seated meal but 2019 is taking a complete U-turn. Brides and grooms are looking for vibrant interesting sharing meals, with a real nod towards Ottolenghi.

Vegan – Veganism is becoming more and more popular and you will continue to see this is 2019. Restaurants and brides and grooms are incorporating vegan options into their menus. We are a big fan of vegan starters, they look stunning and are packed full of flavour, a few of our favourites are:-

Fig and Walnut

Fresh fig, toasted walnut and baby herb salad drizzled with a honey mustard dressing and edible flowers.

Balsamic Peach

Balsamic roasted peach, toasted hazelnut, home dried tomato and baby leaf salad finished with extra virgin olive oil.

Bare naked – when it comes to table settings we are preparing for a lot of paired back, rustic, luxury. A focus on beautiful textures, but not going over the top.

Luxury rustic wedding breakfast table setting | Kelly Chandler Consulting

Sustainability – The events industry is finally putting a huge emphasis on sustainability and we couldn’t be more pleased. 2018 saw the end of single-use plastics and over the next 12-months, there will continue to be more legislation to promote sustainability in the events and wedding industry.

Decorative planted vegetables for a wedding breakfast serving suggestion | Kelly Chandler Consulting

Local produce – This has always been hugely important to us but, with a question mark on what’s happening in March, shopping locally has never been more relevant. We are surrounded by incredible suppliers and producers and have always chosen to use them due to the quality of the produce, not just because they are so close.

Luxury cold meat sharing boards | Kelly Chandler consulting

So I think you can see our catering friends definitely share some trends and predictions (but with their own unique twists) which is always good to know!

I hope you’ve enjoyed and found this useful. Don’t forget to look out for Part 2 over the coming weeks which will cover more foodie delights which are red hot for 2019.


Indulgence // @indulgenceboutiquehospitality // Images by: Chloe Ely Photography

Caper & Berry // @caperandberry  // Louise Adby Photography for High Billinghurst images.

The Curated Kitchen // @thecuratedkitchenuk // Images by: Helen Warner Photography

Kelly Chandler Wedding Consulting helps property and land owners thrive by generating profit from hosting weddings. Kelly and team offer specialist private consulting and group training programmes.

Kelly is a well-respected go-to expert in the business of weddings with a unique grasp of both wedding customer expectations and a host venue's commercial needs.

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