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Best Cocktail Hour Menus for Weddings, Social and Corporate Event Catering

A cocktail hour is a fantastic addition to weddings, social gatherings, and corporate event catering menus alike. Whether you’re planning a wedding, baby shower, birthday bash, or professional corporate event in Orlando, incorporating a cocktail hour menu can elevate your event and leave a lasting impression on your guests. Starting any event with an hour for guests to mix, mingle, and enjoy delicious bites and drinks truly sets the tone for the rest of the evening.

As a leading Orlando wedding and corporate event catering company, the John Michael Events team is here to guide you through the best cocktail hour menus to make your next celebration truly unforgettable. In this post, we’ll show you the best cocktail hour food and beverage options from our weddings, social and corporate event catering menus to inspire you for your next event! Along the way, you’ll see how to make your event’s cocktail hour unique and something your guests will be raving about long after the last bite! 

Why Include Cocktail hour in your Event 

Adding a cocktail hour to your social or corporate event catering menu offers a versatile and fun option. A cocktail hour provides a variety of delicious bite-sized offerings that cater to different tastes and dietary restrictions, allowing your guests to mingle, snack, and enjoy themselves to kickstart the festivities. Plus, cocktail hour menus are perfect for both daytime and evening events, making them a flexible choice for any occasion.

If you’re planning a wedding, holding a cocktail hour before the reception is traditional, so that your loved ones can get the party started while you capture wedding photos. A wedding cocktail hour is both experiential as well as logistical in this sense, as guests love sampling different appetizers during this time, but it also buys you an hour to snap your family formals and newlywed portraits. 

If you’re planning a social event, like an engagement or birthday party, hosting a cocktail hour at the beginning allows the fun to start right away. Guests will be excited to explore the event venue, chat with others, and munch on fun snacks before the more formal activities kick off. 

Similarly, for a corporate event, a cocktail hour allows attendees to trickle in and shows them that the vibe of the event will be more laidback and relaxed, as opposed to their formal, everyday work environment. It’s also a way to treat your team to a fun and unique corporate event catering experience to show your appreciation for all their hard work. 

Wedding Cocktail Hour Menu:

Cocktail Hour Food Options: 

Now that we know why a cocktail hour is important to any social or corporate event catering menu, let’s dig into the best of our food and beverage options for it! Our wedding catering cocktail hour menu offers a plethora of butler passed hors d’ouevres with a wide range of flavor profiles to satisfy all palates. Here’s a taste of some of our favorites: 

  • Fiery Mac & Cheese Bites: A filo shell filled with spicy yellow cheddar mac and cheese topped with a flaming panko dust 
  • Mini BLTs: A twist on the classic – A mixture of shredded romaine, mayo, crumbled bacon, and diced tomatoes on a toasted baguette 
  • Roasted Tomato Bruschetta: Roasted tomatoes, fresh herbs and olive oil served atop a toasted baguette with grated parmesan cheese 
  • Spanakopita: Traditional Greek pastry filled with spinach and feta cheese in a filo dough
  • Balsamic Watermelon Bites: Refreshing watermelon cubes topped with a feta, mint, and shallot blend and drizzled with a balsamic glaze 

With a variety of hot and cold food options and flavors, these cocktail hour options are sure to delight your guests and get them ready to party all night long! To view our full wedding menus, hit the button below: 

Wedding Catering Packages

Cocktail Hour Bar Options: 

While guests are enjoying these apps, they can also sip on a concoction from the bar! We offer numerous bar package options, including a beer and wine open bar and a full liquor open bar, to fit your needs and preferences. If you opt for the full liquor bar, our team can assist in creating a signature cocktail or two to add fun and personality into your bar offerings!

How to Make Your Wedding Cocktail Hour Unique: 

Just because a cocktail hour is a traditional part of a wedding timeline doesn’t mean it has to be conventional! To diversify your wedding cocktail hour, you could also serve your guests station-style food options. A great accompaniment to your butler passed options, our team can set up action stations like, a Mac and Cheese Bar, Street Tacos, Gourmet Mini Pizzas, or Fresh Guacamole and Salsa! 

Another twist on the classic wedding cocktail hour would be to host it prior to the ceremony! Holding a pre-ceremony cocktail hour gets the fun started as soon as guests walk through the door. This would also be a fun way to create a surprise-and-delight moment for your loved ones before you tie the knot! 

Social & Corporate Event Catering Menu: 

Cocktail hour Food Options: 

We also have amazing cocktail hour menu options to add to your social or corporate event catering menu! To tantalize your guests’ taste buds, we would recommend the following highlights: 

  • Boursin Stuffed Mushroom Caps: Boursin cheese hand stuffed mushroom caps dusted with panko breadcrumbs 
  • Meatballs: Our signature handmade meatballs served with marinara, pomerey mustard and bourbon sauces
  • Chicken Satay: Seared and skewered chicken served with peanut, sweet chili and teriyaki sauces 
  • Crab Cakes: Maryland style crab with the perfect blend of seasonings, served with remoulade and key lime mustard sauces 
  • Scallops Wrapped in Bacon: Jumbo bay scallops lightly seasoned and wrapped in applewood smoked bacon 

If you’re aiming for a sweeter cocktail hour or looking for a sweet way to conclude your social or corporate event catering menu, you may opt for these: 

  • Mini Gourmet Cookies: An assortment of our signature cookies served warm 
  • Banana Pudding Shooters: Homemade banana pudding in a shooter cup topped with crumbled nilla wafers 
  • Gourmet Dipped Strawberries: Chocolate, white chocolate, chocolate nut, white chocolate oreo and chocolate coconut 
  • Bavarian Cream Berry Tarts: Flaky tart shell filled with Bavarian cream and topped with fresh berries, lemon zest and a sweet orange glaze 

Check out all our cocktail hour food and beverage options for your social or corporate event catering menu by clicking the button below: 

Social & Corporate Menus

Cocktail hour Bar & Beverage Options: 

What’s a cocktail hour without drinks? In addition to our social and corporate event catering bar packages, we also offer creative drink options, including a Basic Coffee Station, a Gourmet Coffee Station, and self-serve beverages like lemonade, iced tea, and fruit-infused water. 

Your guests will love sipping on any of these options! Ask our team about helping you pair your social or corporate event catering menu with just the right drinks. 

How to Make Your Social or Corporate Event Catering Cocktail hour Unique: 

Incorporating a cocktail hour into your social or corporate event catering menu is certainly a great idea, but how do you take it to the next level? To accomplish this, you might consider setting a theme not just for the event as a whole, but for your corporate event catering menu! 

Our Chefs are true culinary experts in that they can create just about any type of cuisine you desire. From Mediterranean to Indian to South American menus, our team loves to step outside of the box to deliver unique food and beverage options that you and your guests will delight in.  

We’re also pros in bringing an event theme to life! Aside from the catering, we can assist you in sourcing décor and entertainment options that will help execute your theme flawlessly. 

Let’s Plan Your Social or Corporate Event Catering Menu! 

John Michael Events is an experienced Orlando social and corporate event catering company, specializing in serving all types of events, from weddings to social events to corporate events. We offer all-inclusive wedding packages that not only include event catering, but also the additional vendors you’ll need to throw the wedding of your dreams! Twice a quarter, we are proud to host “A Taste of John Michael,” a one-of-a-kind group tasting experience, where clients are invited to sample a variety of our delicacies.

Contact our team by hitting the button below. We would love to chat with you!

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