A “Wow” for Weddings!
Who doesn’t love a good cocktail hour? The drinks are flowing, conversation is buzzing and servers wander by with enticing trays of food. Nailing this important hour between ceremony and reception is a must to keep your guests happy. Wedding guests look for a wide variety of bites to nibble on with their drinks, and waiting in line is a major turnoff. As a recent wedding guest at Eagle Ridge Golf Club in Lakewood, a prime venue for wedding receptions in Ocean County, I was pleased to find that they were right on point with their food and service.
Eagle Ridge’s hors d’oeuvres are portable, flavorful and just enough to satiate. (Is it really necessary to have features like carving stations at cocktail hour? Personally, I don’t think so.) A Goldilocks-worthy happy medium between cheese and crackers and a full buffet, it was just right. There were a few stations set up around the room and a number of passed hors d’oeuvres. These included an ice sculpture (which never seems to go out of style) displaying shrimp and crab claws, trays filled with sausage-stuffed mushrooms, meatballs, grilled vegetables with syrupy balsamic sauce, a pasta station, brie en croute, crab cakes, tuna sashimi, fried goat cheese and lamb chops.
The standout dishes were the bite-sized crab cakes with spicy remoulade sauce and the lamb “lollipops” with basil-mint pesto. The crab cakes were flaky and full of sweet crab meat, not just breading. The lamb was juicy and rich, cooked to a perfect medium, offset by the refreshingly herbaceous pesto. The most popular dish was, surprisingly, the pasta.
A “pastabilities” type of concept, guests could choose from different precooked pastas, sauces and toppings and watch while the chef prepared it on his table-top stove. More of an entertainment value in its novelty, it was nevertheless a good option for people wanting something more substantial before dinner (carb-loading is a wise option at an open bar!).
Dinner was served traditional sit-down style, with a breadstick-and-fried-mozzarella-adorned salad, and options of filet mignon, salmon and a vegetarian vegetable stack. Everything came out hot and not overdone—a feat when serving more than 100 people at the same time! The filet was cooked a perfect medium and the salmon was flaky, though guests agreed the garlic mashed potatoes stole the show on both plates, and the eggplant and mushroom stack was swimming deliciously in melted mozzarella and balsamic.
The quality of food was only enhanced by the staff. They were friendly, organized and served everything with a smile. It’s no wonder Eagle Ridge has won numerous awards, including Wedding Wire’s Couples Choice Award 2014, Wedding Wire’s Bride’s Choice Award 2011 and 2013, The Knot’s Best of Weddings 2010 and 2013 Pick, and Bride’s Choice Award’s 2010. They’ve also been featured on TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress and Cake Boss.
Visit their website for information on wedding packages and testimonials.
Eagle Ridge Golf Club
2 Augusta Blvd
Lakewood, NJ 08701
732-901-4900×252 (for weddings)