Wedding Bar Packages

Wedding Refreshments
November 8, 2018

The Magic Behind Rouge Catering’s Innovation Bar Packages

Time and time again, revered DC and Maryland Chef Jonathan Soudry has been praised for his ingenuity and creativity in the kitchen. A true culinary wizard, his skill is matched only by his innovation, and this is the reason why Rouge Catering has quickly become unmatched in the catering world of the DMV area.

In our last article, we talked about the must-have dishes for your next fall wedding. This week, however, we are all about the booze. Alcohol is a huge part of any celebration, and weddings are no different.

wedding cocktailsOne of the most popular special touches that a couple can incorporate into their wedding is a signature, or even matching his and hers cocktails.

These are an alcoholic or non-alcoholic concoction based around the couple’s personalities and theme, and as you can imagine, they are especially popular for receptions.

Weddings are traditionally centered around the date and develop a seasonal-centric theme. As we approach the holidays, we decided to take a look at the best Rouge Catering has to offer for your special holiday beverages!

Rouge Catering is beloved for their custom menus specifically built for each event, but few realize that that extends to their bar menu as well.

A quick look at their wedding menu reveals their pre-set bar packages, praised time and time again for their upscale options and incredible affordability.

So affordable, in fact, that many couples have foregone purchasing their own alcohol in favor of Rouge’s pre-set bar packages to save both money and time in the final days and months leading up to the wedding. We were especially impressed with the wine selections on their standard package, which features far superior selections to those included in comparably priced packages in the area.

If you’ve ever been to a wedding with over 200 people, you know that sometimes getting a drink can be a feat in itself. However, many comment on the incredible speed and efficiency of Rouge’s bartenders, thereby creating short lines and smoother service at the bar.

Rouge Catering has developed an unparalleled reputation within the hospitality industry for its absolute devotion to five-star service. Not only do they possess the expertise and diversity to create customized menus for each and every couple, but they also continue to demonstrate a remarkable level of flexibility and creativity within their beverage offerings as well.

Welcome Refreshments

Wedding RefreshmentsAlthough there has been the occasional alcoholic aperitif offered upon arrival, most hosts choose to refrain from alcohol prior to the event and instead select a fun and refreshing display. Our favorite is to include the welcome refreshment table in your decorations, by showcasing family wedding photos or pictures of the bride and groom throughout their relationship.

There all kinds of beautiful beverage dispensers perfect for this occasion. For example, flavored water with colorful sliced fruit can make for a beautiful (and refreshing!) picture within a glass beverage display.

One of our favorites is Rouge Catering’s strawberry-lime infused water served in urns with clear tumblers. How can guests resist such a beautifully presented and refreshing beverage to kick off the festivities?

Alcohol, Please

The cocktail hour is always the best time to feature a signature cocktail, a long-loved custom for wedded couples.

Says Caroline who was married this past September, the “his’ and ‘hers’ cocktails that my husband I picked out were a huge hit!”

An added bonus is that a signature cocktail can serve as a cost-saving measure for those working with a limited budget.

While many couples feature their signature cocktails for the entirety of their reception, a more budget-friendly alternative would be to serve the cocktails for just the cocktail hour and then move to a more limited bar afterwards.

Another idea is to forego liquor in favor of his and her signature cocktails, which are a fun way to incorporate liquor into your bar without the cost and hassle of a full bar with its mixers, garnishes, and extra equipment.

signature wedding cocktailsIf you aren’t sure about a signature cocktail and/or are looking for a more budget friendly option, consider featuring the rose included with Rouge’s bar package.

Katie wrote of her June 2018 wedding on Wedding Wire about her experience with Rouge Catering, saying “We added the full open bar package because it was such an incredible deal with the low price per guest and even had a champagne toast and signature drink (a Moscow Mule).”

She goes on to mention that her Rouge planner, Kate, helped produce copper mugs for the Mules and even included a special rose to her wine list because her wedding fell on National Rose Day.

Rebecca, married on September 23, 2017, echoed Katie’s sentiments, writing the Rouge team “working with my husband and the grandfather of the groom to create signature cocktails for our event.”

Becca’s review mentioned how Rouge helped her fiancé source local craft beers to feature on their bar.

A champagne toast is customary prior to dinner and included with most of Rouge’s packages, but many choose to incorporate champagne into a specialty fizzy concoction which could be passed during the cocktail hour or served to the table during dinner.

These lovely brides bring up an important point – sometimes special decorative touches, like the copper mugs of her Moscow Mules, a special craft beer or light rose, or even a family recipe are just the memorable details to keep guests talking long after the honeymoon is over and daily life has resumed.

For the DDs of the Evening

For your designated drivers in attendance (or those who simply do not wish to imbibe), it’s important to consider a fun and creative alternative to the signature cocktail.

Says the team at Rouge Catering, “We have a wonderful non-alcoholic bar package which can be complimented with your choice of ‘mocktail.’”

This is especially popular for outdoor summer weddings, when temperatures soar and the brutal sun can make even the most hydrated guest parched. 


As the evening winds down, the focus typically becomes less about the bar and more about dessert and coffee.

While alcohol is a long-loved accompaniment to dessert, there are still many who abstain.

For the non-drinkers in the bunch, enhance your traditional coffee bar with the inclusion of rich Mexican hot chocolate and fresh cream.

At the end of the day, it’s less about what you choose and more about what you enjoy. Some couples get so preoccupied with the little details that they forget what matters the most.

And, given the glowing reviews for Rouge’s entire team and the company’s absolute commitment to service and creativity, there is no doubt that together we will dream up the perfect concoction reminiscent of you as a couple!

Top 5 Menu Ideas To Serve At Your Wedding

November 1, 2018

Catering is much like Hell’s Kitchen, built on a foundation of instability, sudden change, and constant disruption to even the best laid plans.

Since 2007, Rouge Catering has taken its place among Washington and Baltimore’s best and brightest, with a near-perfect rating on Wedding Wire where they’re praised repeatedly for their world-class service. They have certainly earned their stripes, but there is no doubt that the food takes center stage time and time again.

With classical French training and over 35 years of experience, owner and Executive Chef Jonathan Soudry creates a level of flair and prestige so rare in the volatile and strenuous world of catering. With a steadfast loyalty to farm-fresh ingredients and seasonally appropriate cuisine, Rouge Catering has become a treasure within the Capital Belt.

And now, with wedding season in full swing with autumn’s mild weather, changing colors, and endless themes, the focus turns to the perfect, seasonal menu filled with seasonal fare. From roasted root vegetables to rich demis cloaking hearty meats, and the scent of apple and cinnamon perfuming the crisp, cool air, fall delivers a rich, decadent menu that fills the belly and warms the soul.

However, with caterers a dime a dozen, opening and shuttering like the tides of the Potomac, it is harder than ever for couples to find the perfect – and affordable – caterer for the wedding of their dreams.

This is where Rouge Catering has become a standout in both the DC and Baltimore markets, writing custom menus tailored to each couple. And thank goodness, because a quick look at their menus can prove to be overwhelming at first glance.  (We had to grab a snack just reading through the hors d’oeuvres!)

As we close out fall and approach the holidays, we decided it’s the perfect time to take a closer look at the standout stars among Rouge Catering’s beautifully curated menus.

But every now and then, there comes a chef who is able to translate the catered experience into something much far more powerful, something more unique, and something truly incredible.

Cocktail Hour

Instead, get guests talking with Rouge’s bruschetta bar featuring cinnamon, pears, olive tapenade, and goat cheese. It’s a display that will feel right at home amongst the rolling Maryland and Virginia countryside.

You would be hard pressed to attend a Maryland wedding without Eastern Shore-style crab cakes, and again Rouge does not disappoint. Available as a passed hors d’oeuvre or plated entrée, these morsels of goodness are beloved for their crispy coating, natural sweetness, and no shortage of lump crab. Served on a festive “tear drop” spoon for cocktail hour or with a sweet potato galette for dinner, Soudry tops his crab cakes with an accent of his own citrus remoulade.

Curtsy tradition with a nod to the familiar by adding Chef Soudry’s burger slider with a twist, presented on a hand-cut potato crisp instead of the traditional bun. It’s a lighter and fun option that is recognizable to your guests but delivered with an added elegance.

And the best part about Rouge’s passed hors d’oeuvres?

Kristin B. explains in her Yelp review:

“All amazingly composed AND served so you didn’t need a plate…the hallmark of a great app.”


Despite the plethora of hors d’oeuvres offered during the cocktail hour, guests are often too preoccupied with socializing to eat, so they arrive at their tables famished. However, with introductions, speeches, and toasts, it may be awhile before the main course is served. That’s why it’s especially important to select an appetizer that is satisfying but won’t risk ruining the star of the show, the upcoming entrée.

Rouge Catering offers a host of autumn-inspired appetizers, but our favorite is a velvety pumpkin and apple bisque that is sure to warm those crisp fall evenings. It’s also vegetarian friendly, eliminating the extra work on your RSVPs.

For a more upscale option, Jeanne-Marie, married last December, raved about her appetizer, saying the “highlight was grilled octopus served on a chickpea puree, with roasted tomato and caper embellishments.”

Really, it doesn’t seem like you can go wrong, and Rouge will work with you to create a menu reflective of you as a couple.


Guests typically do not have high expectations for “wedding food,” but Rouge brings a smile to the face of even the toughest cynic. There is such diversity in their offerings, and their mastery of so many distinctive cuisines is their defining trademark. Better yet, they have the uncanny ability to meet various food restrictions with delicious and distinctive options.

Still, there are two dishes that stand out again and again: Rouge’s rockfish and short ribs.

Like crab, rockfish is a staple in Maryland and popular on many locally-inspired menus. However, it can be incredibly hard to get right in a full-service kitchen, let alone a mobile catering kitchen like the one Rouge utilizes.

And yet each review heaps endless praise and adoration on Soudry’s rockfish, which he carves to order and plates with fresh garden herbs and a delicate citrus-garlic sauce.

We recommend the homemade brown butter gnocchi pan-seared with sage and brussels sprouts as the perfect accompaniment to the delicate fish. (And bonus – it has the added bonus of serving as a third entree for vegetarians!)

And finally, the star of the show, the dish they are known for – the slow-braised short ribs.

They’re so good, they are served a few different ways. The most popular is Provencal, which infuses fresh herbs with toasted fennel and orange zest, and then topped with plum tomatoes and a red wine demi-glace. Or, for more of a Latin flare, go with the Provencal Espanola, which pairs an exceptional tortilla Española with fire roasted asparagus as compliments to the signature dish.

Kristin also applauded the beef short ribs in her Wedding Wire review, saying they “melt in your mouth” and were the “groom’s favorite,” while other reviewers echo the same sentiment of the “fork tender” dish. (Tip: they can also be served in a mashed potato cup as a creatively convenient and delicious hors d’oeuvre.)

If none of these popular entrees strike your fancy, their maple brined chicken with pear chutney or mirin glazed Chilean seabass with cannellini bean puree surely suit a seasonal menu.

And for those looking for something a little more mainstream, Rouge Catering takes their mac & cheese very seriously, offering eight different kinds with a customizable topping bar.


As you may have noticed, interactive stations never seem to go out of style, but one small misstep, and a station can disintegrate into the typical, stale, overcooked buffet. Rouge Catering, however, transforms their stations into a magical spread of wonder.

Think we’re kidding? For a company built on creative ingenuity, Rouge offers no shortage of options to suit even the most discriminating palate.

A long-loved favorite is their homemade, signature mini donuts, available as a martini bar or presented atop mason jars with cold milk.

Donut martini buffet?  Yes, you heard right. Rouge makes their signature mini donuts on-site with the especially seasonal-appropriate apple cider donuts. These can be complimented by a toppings bar that includes everything from crème fraiche, champagne-soaked berries, and cinnamon Chantilly cream.

With such creative and seasonal options, even the most demanding guest will not be able to fight the warmth of nostalgia from these delectable little nuggets.

Rouge also offers their signature donuts in a different pairing, served atop miniature mason jars filled with ice cold milk and accented with a festive striped straw. (Plus, it has the added advantage of slowing down the bar as the evening winds down!)

They also make for a gorgeous display, and they are just the finishing touch to have your guests raving about your event for months to come.

Plus, you can decorate the table with pictures of you and your guests for an added touch to end the evening.

“Here at Rouge, we like to say: ‘Let the menu tell the story of the couple.’”

And the best part? Rouge Catering’s team sends a special picnic basket to the honeymoon suite for the bride and groom to enjoy long after the reception is over. Flair and style for your big day.

With such incredibly unique and creative menu options, Rouge Catering brings a level of class and glamour to the upscale world of Washington, D.C. Invite personal flair and style to your big day through a customized menu and world-class service, courtesy of Rouge Catering.

How To Choose The Right Catering Menu For Your Wedding

April 1, 2017

On your wedding day, you want the best of the best. You want to impress your guests with the beautiful venue, your gorgeous dress, and a delicious menu. But there is a point when it all goes a little too far. Eventually, you should stop thinking about your guests and just start focusing on you and your soon-to-be spouse.

When it comes to wedding catering and picking a menu, a lot of couples try to accommodate for all of their guests, which generally involves dietary restrictions based on allergies or religion. These days, everyone has some sort of allergy, so we believe it is best to just make food selections based on your preferences and budget.

At Rouge Fine Catering, we offer so many different food choices and menu styles that it will be easy for you to choose the right catering menu for you and your wedding. Following these tips will help you avoid common faux pas when selecting a wedding menu.

Set a Budget

This is always a great rule to start with, no matter what part of the wedding you are trying to make decisions for. Weddings are expensive, so you must decide how much you want to spend on everything, that way the choices will become easier and more limited. When choosing a menu, a budget will help you decide how much food to get, what type of food, and how to have it served.

You should also think about whether you want appetizers, a main course, and dessert, or which mix of courses you want. Rouge Fine Catering offers a very large variety of different food choices, styles, and options. From butlered hors d’oeuvres and gourmet dips to breakfast and snacks. Depending on what type of wedding you are having, you will have several choices to make, so set a budget, it will help make your decisions a bit easier.

Stick With a Few Options

Too many times, couples make the assumption that offering more options will be better for their guests and the overall wedding. But there is generally no need for more than three options. For appetizers, it is good to have a few more options, just to add some variety and keep it interesting before the main course. When you offer too many options for the main course, however, you will be paying more, and it may not mean more people are satisfied with the meal. If you have some sort of chicken dish, a beef dish, and a vegetarian dish, you generally will be able to cover all the bases. You can always substitute fish and/or pork dish in for one of those, depending on your preferences.

Don’t Focus On Your Guests

Your guests are not the reason for the celebration, they are not the most important part of the wedding, meaning you most certainly should not work around them and their needs. If one of them wants a fully vegetarian menu, you cannot change your entire menu to accommodate for that, someone else is sure to want a steak. That is why you pick three options, like stated above. Get something everyone will like, don’t worry about making everyone happy, it is your day, meaning you can be as selfish as you want.

Think About Your Wedding

Depending on the time, the size, and the style of your wedding, you will want to consider different menu options. In our last blog, we discussed the best food choices for weddings based on times. This is definitely something to consider when deciding on a menu, you don’t want to serve steak at a morning wedding, or maybe you do, it also all depends on the type of couple you are. Which brings us to our next point.

What Kind Of Couple Are You

If you are the kind of couple who just loves snacks and munches on little things all day long, maybe consider skipping the main course. If you are the kind of couple who lives for gourmet food, you should go with some fine dining options and amaze your guests with the high-end catering choices. If you are a couple who couldn’t care less about the food as long as there are drinks to indulge in, then make sure your catered bar is fully stocked and run by the pros at Rouge Fine Catering and let your parents pick the food.

As weird as it may seem, your menu should mirror you as a couple. It makes the whole wedding and experience more personal, and your guests are sure to remember it. Rouge has so many options on the wedding menu that it is definitely possible for you and your loved one to select a menu you both agree on and are excited about.

Rouge Fine Catering has the best options for gourmet food selection. Make your wedding special with the best menu that fits your wedding and style. These tips can help make the hard decisions easier. Take a look at our wedding menus to inspire some ideas for your big day, and contact us with any questions you may have.

Catering Choices for Different Wedding Times

March 6, 2017

Weddings are a special day in many couples’ lives, it is a day when they join together as a family and celebrate their love with all their friends and relatives. Weddings are hard to plan and every couple has an idea of how they will celebrate their union. Some do late night weddings, with sparklers, a canopy of lights above the dance floor, and a delicious dinner. Others may have a morning wedding—a beautiful outdoor celebration with birds chirping, naturally lit photos, and a mimosa bar.

No matter the time of day you decide to have your wedding, you should plan your special day accordingly. Don’t plan for a light canopy if you are having a daytime, outdoor wedding. Don’t plan a night wedding without adequate lighting. Don’t invite thousands of guests if you are having a destination wedding. This is pretty common sense, but something many people do not consider while planning a wedding, is the fact that food choices are better when they go with the time of day of their wedding.

Rouge Fine Catering offers an extensive menu for weddings, complementing different times of day. We can help you create the perfect menu for your wedding no matter when it is.

Morning Weddings

Mornings are not as popular of a time for weddings as evenings are, but we still offer a number of items that will satisfy the breakfast lovers of the bunch. This is not your average breakfast menu, this is gourmet breakfast. We offer everything for mini muffins to mini quiches, meaning that your wedding menu can be as simple or as elegant as breakfast can get. Choose from options including:

  • Bistro Breakfast Wrap
  • Breakfast Burrito
  • Fresh Fruit Salad
  • Frittatas
  • Lox Tray
  • Savory and Sweet Croissants

Breakfast catering has never been so delicious. With all of our food options, you can give your guests what they want, whether they have a sweet tooth or seek out the more savory flavors.

Evening Wedding

Evening weddings are more common. They are the celebrations with lights, candles, sparklers, and delicious dinner items. Because of the commonality of the evening wedding, we offer an extensive menu of gourmet food that will wow your guests. With multiple entrees to choose from and different courses, you can find the perfect choices for your wedding. We have hors d’oeuvres, dips, salads, soups, and breads, but those are only the starters! Our entrees give you endless options, some types include:

  • Composed Entrees
  • Poultry
  • Vegetarian
  • Seafood
  • Pasta
  • Beef, Lamb, Pork

Each of these has entrees has several options, you could choose a parmesan-crusted chicken breast or go with a southern fried chicken. Out variety of options allows you to choose food that caters to your theme, guests, and style of your wedding.

Other Options

Maybe your wedding is a quick celebration in the middle of the day, or maybe you are having a small wedding before going to your favorite pizza place, because you and your new spouse love pizza. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have food for your guests. Everyone knows that all good parties and celebrations have food. If your wedding budget doesn’t allow for a gourmet, three-course meal, just decide for a high-end snack bar. Some of our snack, if you can call them that, include:

  • Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites
  • Gourmet Soft Pretzel Bar
  • Parmesan Truffle Frites
  • Parmesan Truffle Kettle Chips

With a snack bar like this, your guest will love your food options and be satisfied with the variety they have to choose from.

A wedding is a special day, with special people, and, hopefully, delicious food. Rouge Fine Catering can cater your wedding, giving you gourmet choices no matter what time of day you planned your celebration.

Be sure to take a look at our full wedding menu, you may find more than enough choices for your wedding, and contact us to start planning for your special day.