Boulton’s Entertaining Bits & Bites: Mini is the word

Mini tacos  and margaritas courtesy of Tim LaBant Catering

Mini tacos and margaritas courtesy of Tim LaBant Catering

This week, I want to share a very cool trend that I’ve been seeing in catering and using at some of my events. Serving your appetizers and desserts with a perfectly paired mini beverage! Not only is inviting to look at and tasty (who can resist an adorable little something?), but it quenches your guests appetite and thirst. Lucky for you, I have a whole bunch of awesome examples! You can take your event up a notch by simply incorporating any one or several of these ideas.

To get the “wow” factor going from the start, let’s begin with some hors d’oeuvres suggestions.

Think how your guests will take notice when presented with a tray of Guinness ale shots and mini Reuben sandwiches. You can also go the Mexican route and even set up a taco station. This can be a completely interactive station for your guests, getting them involved in creating their own tacos. Offer an array of filings and toppings including traditional beef tacos with lettuce and shredded cheese, fish taco with Pico de Gallo or a Mexican sausage taco with crema and cilantro. Have a chef assemble them to order or let your guests do it themselves. Pair it with little bottles of Patron, or for something a little tamer, serve mini margaritas. Your guests will surely get quite a kick out of it!

But all beverages need not be alcoholic. What could be more irresistible than mini cheeseburger sliders with chocolate milkshakes or mini shredded pulled pork sliders with petite bottles of Coke? Delicious is the word for the combination of tomato basil soup shooters paired with mini artisan grilled cheese sandwiches.

There are even more options. Oysters are definitely in vogue now. You don’t need a full raw bar when you can set up a boutique oyster bar with some amazing toppings like champagne tarragon mignonette and Serrano chili. Oysters are portable, slurpable, sexy and delicious. Source some of the mollusks from local waters like Fisher’s Island or Copp’s Island. Be sure to label the different kinds for your guests, and pair with mini Bloody Marys. Or pass fried oysters with a mini Mojito. You could also stray a bit and include sushi with mini sake shots.

For a bridal shower, how about skipping the traditional mimosas? Serve the ladies mini cans of effervescent Sofia Blanc de Blancs (they come with a cute straw) with dainty tea sandwiches or even pastel macaroons! Sophisticated, unusual, and very stylish.

And don’t forget other dessert pairings. What could be cuter at a wedding than to pass something late night, after the sugar affect of the wedding cake wears off? It could be brownie bites paired with vanilla milk shakes or mini chocolate chip cookies with a cold, milk shooter. To keep the party rocking late, late night pass sugared donuts on a rock candy stick served over small, steaming cups of espresso.

The possibilities are endless. If you are thinking of hosting a party and serving appetizers or desserts, definitely think of pairing it with a mini beverage. Your guests will be impressed and so glad you did!

Take a look at the fabulous bottles of Patron with striped straws and mini tacos. So cool.


Laura Boulton has lived in Darien for 19 years. Before starting her event planning business in 2010, Boulton was in the catering business for 5 years. For more information, visit her website at or follow her on twitter @LBoultonevents



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