Can There Be Too Much Food at a Wedding?

I didn't eat ALL that...just most of it. Paul ate the rest.

I didn’t realize until I went to a wedding outside of the New York area that it wasn’t normal to have a dozen stations at the cocktail hour, 10 different passed hors d’oeuvres, a four-course sit-down meal, a wedding cake of four tiers (at least), and a dessert buffet with chocolate fountains, cookies, and, of course, more cake. And now, I’m starting to reconsider normal.

I’ve always loved food and eating it. It wasn’t a holiday at my grandmother’s apartment until everyone’s bellies were visibly larger than when they arrived. And there were only a handful of days throughout my childhood that my parents and sister didn’t gather around our dining room table for not only dinner but also dessert. (Healthy, I know.) So I expected my and Paul’s wedding to be a mouth-stuffing food fest.

It wasn’t quite that. There weren’t two Ferris wheel-size cheese rounds–there wasn’t even one. No sushi station, either, as much as I would’ve loved one. No roast pig wearing a chef’s hat or sunglasses, not that I missed that being faux-sher and all (that’s my made-up word for eschewing pork for non-religious reasons and eating shellfish like they’re going extinct). And in lieu of a Viennese hour, during which the wait staff rolls out carts and carts of every sweet treat imaginable, there were a few measly plates of Italian cookies. A little embarrassing.

To my friends from the Midwest, though, this was the most food-tastic wedding to which they’d ever been. They couldn’t believe ours was on the low end of offerings.

After a yummy rehearsal dinner and wedding last weekend, I gained four pounds, the same amount I packed on after a 10-day-long trip to Spain and France. True, no one was holding a gun to my head as I stacked three (albeit small) plates high with food at the cocktail hour (there was lobster risotto, lobster ravioli, AND lobster mac and cheese–what choice did I have?!) or as I lined up for a piece of wedding cake, a crepe, a cannoli, a rainbow cookie, a zeppole, a churro, and a warm chocolate-chip cookie at the Viennese hour. While a big part of me wished I had more willpower, a teeny-tiny part of me wished there was simply less food.

To be sure, I’d rather too much food than not enough. I once went to a wedding where the only protein option was pork, and it took all my might not to curl up in my formal clothes and cry in a corner. I wish I were kidding when I say I wept tears of joy when the cake came out.

So what do you think? Is there such a thing as too much food at a wedding? Are you able to control yourself at receptions (unlike me–oink, oink)? Does it bum you out when there’s not a lot of food?

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