Italian food is undeniably among the most popular cuisines in the world. You are likely to find an Italian restaurant in almost every country on earth. The most popular dish in Italian cuisine is pasta, which can be prepared in many different ways.

Over the years, Italian cuisines have been associated with fine dining, the kind that connoisseurs are associated with. Serving Italian food at your wedding is, therefore, a great idea. Below are seven great Italian food catering ideas you can use at your wedding.

1. Cocktail Hour

When it comes to Italian food catering for weddings, the first thing you will be served with upon arrival are cocktails that are usually accompanied by small bites, which are chosen carefully to compliment the drinks. The drinks could be anything from fruit juice to a delightful glass of wine. Cocktail hour focuses more on the drinks than the food.

However, light snacks such as olives, nuts, cheese and bread are acceptable since they leave enough room for the main course. Cocktail hour is usually a time for people to get their first drink, take wedding photos, and walk around while getting acquainted with other guests at the wedding.

2. Antipasti

Also known as appetizers or starters, this is the first substantial dish you are likely to be served with at a wedding featuring Italian food. In some cases, it is served while people are still mingling. You can either have a single course meal or a mixture of different foods. Other appetizers include mushrooms, ham and melon, grilled seafood, smoked salmon, shrimp cocktail, bruschetta and bread accompanied by a variety of Italian cheese.

If the wedding is taking place during the summer or other warm months of the year, you can serve refreshing Italian appetizers like the shrimp cocktail. Depending on the setup you choose for your wedding, you can either decide to have the waiters walk with trays around the reception serving the appetizers to guests, or set up a food bar where guests can go and help themselves.

3. Insalata

After the guests have enjoyed the cocktails and appetizers and have had the chance to mingle and take photos, it is time for everyone to take their seats and start the formal part of the reception. At this point, the appetite of your guests will have begun to awaken, and they will be waiting to eat some real food. You can start by serving your guests with a variety of salads.

Since it is an Italian-themed wedding, it would be a great idea to serve traditional Italian salads such as the Caprese Salad, or a Caesar Salad accompanied by sliced mozzarella, balsamic and tomatoes. You can also have the Arugula salad with some gorgonzola and walnuts for guests who prefer their salads slightly bitter.

Having a variety of salads to choose from is an excellent way of making sure everyone stays happy since each of your guests has different palates.

4. Primo Platto

Primo platto is also known as the first course. This is where the pasta comes in. Italy is known for having the best pasta in the world. In some cases, it is consumed as the main dish. There is a wide variety of pasta to choose from. These include penne, risotto dishes, linguine, lasagna, and others.

A great example of a pasta dish is the bow-tie arrabiata served with fresh basil and spicy tomato. Another great dish is the tagliatelle Alfredo, which is served with garlic and mushrooms (this is an excellent choice for a creamy based pasta). If you want a meaty pasta, you can try the tagliatelle a la carbonara, consisting of guanciale, pecorino, eggs, and which can be topped off with bacon. These are all great Italian food catering ideas that taste delicious!

5. Secondo Platto

Secondo platto is also known as the main course. In most cases, this meal is usually made up of fish or meat. You can serve your guests with chicken marsala, pork, guinea fowl, beef, or the most popular choice, which is any fish-based dish. You cannot go wrong with grilled fish accompanied by some artichoke caponata or a Sicilian-style prepared swordfish.

6. Sorbetto

Also known as sorbet, this part of the course aims to prepare the palates of your guests for the next meal. A sorbet is quite similar to ice cream, the difference being that it is usually mixed with alcoholic drinks such as vodka or Prosecco. It comes in a variety of flavours, for example; mandarin, mint, ginger, strawberry and lemon. Sorbets are considered to be palate cleansers.

7. Dolce

Dolce is also known as dessert. In some weddings, the wedding cake is usually served as the desert, but this does not have to be the case. Before cutting the cake, you can serve your guests with a typical Italian dessert such as the Tiramisu. If the wedding is taking place during the summer, you can serve ice cream alongside some strawberries or Italian cookies.

Irrespective of the theme of your wedding, you can never go wrong with any of the above Italian food catering ideas!