Exclusive Dartmoor Weddings & Seasonal Events - Coombe Trenchard

Exclusive Country House Weddings & Events to Celebrate the Season

wedding catering

A Chat with Jaded Palates

WeddingsSarah MarshComment

We enjoyed a wonderful meeting with Ian from Jaded Palates not too long ago, and feel so happy to be able to recommend his company to our bridal couples. Ian's passion and knowledge are truly impressive and we felt a further chat would be the best way to spread the word about the wonderful things Jaded Palates are doing:

How would you describe your business?

Jaded Palates is all about having fun with fun. Whilst we do have two shops and an online store, we like to think we are more a service business than retail. We hold a lot of events, tastings, food and wine pairings, educational talks to encourage people to see wine as fun and enjoyable, and not intimidating. We get so excited when a customer says to us "oh wow, I never would have thought that. You've really opened our eyes to this whole subject!". That gives us goosebumps!

What is your favourite thing about being involved in the wedding industry?

Being a part of a couples' special day is very exciting. Let's face it, wine is one of the fun parts of any wedding. Whether that's just an easy-drinking sipper bottle of something simple with your meal, or a carefully matched series of wines for each course your caterer/chef have prepared for you, we think wine should be one of the enjoyable things you should be planning, not worrying about it.

What advise would you give to bridal couples when thinking about their wedding wine/drinks?

Make sure you try it before you buy it! And don't be afraid to consider more unusual things - I've provided off-dry white wines for a couple who wanted mostly reds with their spicy Mexican buffet they were planning. They were amazed at how much better they went once we put it to the test!

How do you feel Jaded Palates can assist bridal couples in a unique way?

Quite often wine is one of the last things people think about when planning a wedding - it's often simply left down to a relative to dash down to the supermarket or Majestic to pick something up. We can actually make that part of the process fun - we'll sit down with you and your caterer to come up with something that everyone is happy with, or even send you samples to try if you're not able to be nearby. Our pricing is very reasonable of course (our house wines start at just £5.50), and we offer full sale-or-return for anything that isn't opened on the day, but that should be standard these days. We're all about helping you and providing that personal touch which you can't get anywhere else.

What do you feel is imperative for a wedding wine?

There should be something for everyone, firstly. Quite often people will stick to offering one white and one red because that's simplest. But not everyone likes NZ Sauvignon Blanc or Argentinian Malbec. Getting a couple of options needn't be more confusing or expensive. But more importantly, it should just be good! It sounds simple, and everyone's palate is different, but a well-made wine is not always that common.

How do you advise couples keep guests happy with their drinks selection?

As above really - offer a little variety (as well as perhaps a little information on each wine if they aren't sure - we can help with this, of course!), and enough of it! You're better off getting too much than too little: you can always return it and you'll only pay for what was opened.

How much wine to you allow per guest when totalling up how much is needed?

Every wedding is different of course, and it depends on the size: larger weddings are perhaps counter-intuitively a bit easier to cater for, because things average out more evenly. But on the whole, you plan for roughly 1/2 to 3/4 a bottle of wine per person in total. Some won't drink much if anything, others much more. But it usually averages out at around that.

 

Tell us about your shops and what you offer for visitors to them. 

We're based in small-ish towns in Dartmoor, and very much part of the local communities we serve. We keep our selection purposefully quite small - choice is often far too intimidating when it comes to wine in my view. Why have 25 wines from the same region and leave the choice to the customer? I see our job as partly being to pick the best and put them on display, so that no matter which bottle is picked up and taken home, it will be really good. We do a lot of tasting events in store, and in Ashburton, we have a tasting room with 16 wines in dispensers permanently for people to try. It's often a great starting point for a hen or stag night too...!

 

 

Finally, what excites you most about your job?

Seriously?! I get to talk about wine all day every day. What is not to like..?!

A Chat With Oaktree Occasions

WeddingsSarah MarshComment

Hot on the heels of our newly updated suppliers list, we felt it was important to give an insight into our favourite wedding contributors. Over the cosy Winter period, we will be posting 'chats' with our favourite suppliers to better inform our bridal couples about the service offered by these fantastic companies. 

Firstly, our thoughts turned to food, and Coombe Trenchard's favoured caterer: Oaktree Occasions. We are huge fans of Oaktree Occasions here at Coombe Trenchard: they offer exacting, friendly professionalism and ensure each and every morsel of food served is a delight. Caroline and Jo are also incredibly efficient and wonderful to work with, and we do so enjoy welcoming them to Coombe Trenchard. 

How would you describe your business?

Catering Specialists for every and any event, delivering stunning, handmade locally sourced food, chosen by our clients to their exact specifications, served to you in an exceptionally professional way with a unique eye for detail in every area of our business.

What is your favourite thing about being involved in the wedding industry?

Every week, every client, menu and location, being different!

The excitement of meeting a prospective client, especially those with a challenge or conundrum that needs solving, be that menu choices to please everyone, which style of service to have-sharing-informal-plated, resolve any timing issues and advise how to best plan your day. Generally being able to pass on all our invaluable knowledge and ability to problem solve to give our clients the best solutions and ensure a hassle free flawless day to remember, ending with an open and honest relationship between us ,which is as it should be when we are trusted to look after clients on one of the most important days of there lives!

Can you describe Coombe Trenchard in three words?

Endless    Delightful    Possibilities

What meal do you feel best fits Coombe Trenchard’s unique atmosphere?

We would always advise using the seasons to guide you and honestly we have such a wide range of menus and styles of service, with careful styling and Coombe Trenchard’s unique locations pretty much anything is a possibility!

What advice would you offer bridal couples when choosing their caterer?

Do your homework first! Professional wedding and event caterers will normally adhere to a set of standards which are clear to see.

Always try and meet face to face at their premises if you can: you should be able to gauge straight away their professionalism, and whether they are everything they proclaim to be. Have a rough idea of timings (any experienced wedding caterer should be able to assist you with this) and put some thought to your whole wedding party and the needs of the group as a whole, for example Grandma may not like your favourite spicy treat that you would love to have!

Tell your caterer everything about your special day and how you envisage it to be, your dreams, your worries and anything unique that may affect the caterers, (such as disappearing on horseback for two hours for photographs after the ceremony)

The quotation should be clear, concise and as transparent as possible based on the information given. This will ensure there are no hidden costs to you. Your caterer will be an important part of your day, we would expect to have a reasonable dialogue with any bride and groom before the day, so you also need to be comfortable with your caterer.

Tastings should always be available to help make those final decisions, remember it is also a business transaction so ask for terms and conditions, how to secure your booking (you don’t want your caterer to double book you), and payment terms...sorry.... but it is easy to get swept up in the occasion.

Finally any reputable wedding caterer of any standing should have a wealth of testimonials, Google reviews and social media reviews, these are a good way to get an insight into their business and give you peace of mind.

What is your favourite thing to cook/serve to bridal couples?

It’s not necessarily a particular dish (although the delight when guests are offered a delicious canapé with a glass of Pimms or bubbles is always a pleasure to behold) what will always be the most important is that we have executed all areas of our cuisine, drinks and food service to our exacting high standards, and that each and every one of our couples is happy with their own particular menu, executed by us to them and their guests.

How should bridal couples choose from the amazing options on your menus?

Pretty much anything goes these days; we have to offer lots of styles of food and service which can be daunting! A lot of couples may start with their favourite dishes and we can build a menu around these. If you are having lots of photos in the fabulous gardens your guests will gratefully receive drinks and canapés on the Terrace whilst you capture your special day.

Think of the style of service you would like- is sharing your thing, or would you feel awkward and rather be served individually?

Do you like traditional English food or something a little different? Think about the time of your ceremony; will your guests have had lunch or missed lunch?

How will the food slot in and not impinge on any evening celebrations...and unfortunately, as we have already said, you do have to consider all of your guests tastes but we can always find a way of keeping everyone happy with the wealth of knowledge and experience we have, and can guide you through this process with ease.

Do you get involved in serving drinks at all?

We can serve your arrival drinks of your choice, garnished accordingly, normally on the Terrace or in the house if the weather is inclement and can provide staff to run a bar for you along with placing your choice of wine on the tables during your meal and serving your toasting drink.

What size catering marquee/kitchen space to you require?

This totally depends on the size of your wedding party, if you are an intimate group we may have access to the kitchen in the main house, however this would depend on your menu choices, number of courses, cooking facilities required etc.

If you choose the marquee site we would require a minimum of 6x6metres for 100 guests, rising to 6x9metres for over 100 guests, this can easily be supplied by your marquee company.

Finally, what excites you most about your job?

The anticipation of service on the special day, after all the months of planning and the exceptional feeling of contentment and a job well done when we quietly depart and drive off in the distance...often with the sound of laughter and music drifting after us!

Thank you so much for chatting with us Oaktree Occasions, we look forward to seeing you in December for a cosy, intimate mid-week wedding. You can find out more about the exceptional service offered by Jo & Caroline on their website