Tastings at The Ashes

wedding drinks at The Ashes

I can’t tell you how much we love hosting Tastings at The Ashes Wedding Experience Events. They offer us the opportunity to showcase some of our Head Chef’s new and innovative dishes, in addition to serving up some classic choices for a wedding breakfast.

Held in advance of your Personal Consultation meeting with us, we hope that by experiencing a number of dishes, you’ll find it much easier to select which dishes you’d like to serve at your wedding.


Your Invitation

You’ll get your invitation by email, directly from The Ashes, offering you a choice of sittings. The event takes place at The Ashes and you can expect to enjoy the company of around 80 to 100 other excited individuals at your sitting.

The Bride and Groom get two complimentary places for the Wedding Experience Event and wherever possible you’ll be given the option to invite up to an additional four guests for a nominal fee which gets added to your final catering invoice.

A Warm Welcome


Upon arrival at The Ashes you’ll be welcomed by one of their wonderful Event Managers who will give you a Tasting Pack which includes details of the dishes we’ll be serving on the day, The Cellar wines selected to accompany the dishes and space to make lots of notes!

Rediscover The Ashes

Before you’re invited to take your seats in The East Barn for the tasting, you’ll have the opportunity to explore and rediscover the beauty of The Ashes Venue. Perhaps you’ll be inspired by the variety of decorative suggestions placed by The Topiary Tree Florist; I love the way they decorate the dining tables with a different centrepiece on each, it’s fantastic.


Pick Our Brains!

The Ashes Events Managers will be on hand to answer any questions you might have, as will our team of experienced Wedding Co-ordinators so it’s an excellent opportunity to pick our brains whilst you’re enjoying the ambience of The Ashes, a glass of bubbly and a canapé or two.



The Tasting

You can find out which table you’re seated at by consulting the Table Plan hung in the anteroom, just as your guests will on your wedding day. Once everyone is seated, the owner of The Ashes, Ben Reeves will say a few words to welcome everyone before we begin service.

Please appreciate that with around 100 guests to serve it is not possible for you to choose which specific dish you’d like to try. Our fabulous team of chefs select a range of dishes to inspire and delight you and your guests.


We’ll cook around four different dishes per course and serve at least one example of each dish to your table. You won’t know precisely which dish you’ll get but hopefully you’ve brought close friends or family who don’t mind sharing.


Our Wedding Co-ordinators will talk each table through the dishes as they are served and answer any questions you might have.

We’ll always prepare a vegetarian option at each course and any specific dietary requirements you may have will have been communicated to us in advance so that we can make any necessary substitutions.


The Experience

We’re sure that you’ll have a great time at your tasting. It’s a fantastic opportunity to experience The Ashes full of excited people just as it will be on your wedding day; the warmth and ambience in this stunning venue is second to none.

Be Seduced

If by chance you’ve already chosen your wedding breakfast menu prior to the Tasting but then try something that simply blows your mind, don’t worry! You can change your wedding breakfast menu up to 21 days before your wedding. Just get in touch and we’ll make the changes.

Thanks to Stott Weddings for the photographs of the last Ashes Tasting Day.


What’s on the menu?


How to get the most out of your Personal Consultation.

As your wedding day approaches we’ll invite you to attend your Personal Consultation at our newly refurbished headquarters in Stafford. We’ll contact you around 6 to 8 months prior to your wedding to arrange a mutually convenient date.

What’s it all about?

You’ll meet with one of our experienced wedding co-ordinators and together you’ll make some decisions about the catering for your wedding at The Ashes.

Some things to think about…

Here are just a few of the things we’ll discuss at your Personal Consultation.

Would you like to serve canapés during your drinks reception?

If your guests have had an early start they are likely to be pretty peckish during your drinks reception. Our delightfully moreish canapés are a great way to keep their hunger at bay without ruining their appetite.

What drinks will you be serving during the drinks reception?

The Ashes is a no corkage wedding venue which means you may have opted to supply your own drinks for the drinks reception and meal. We need to know what you’re planning to serve so that we can arrange to have all the appropriate glassware in place. Remember to tell us if you’re serving Pimms so that we can prepare all the fresh mint and fruit for you, free of charge.

Are you thinking of doing speeches first?

If you think you’d like to have your speeches before the wedding breakfast just consider what will happen to your chosen dishes if the speeches run over. It’s a good idea to choose forgiving dishes that are not time critical; a salad starter will wait patiently for the best man to finish but a perfectly risen soufflé may suffer if there is a delay in service.

Would you like to treat guests to an unexpected course?

If you’re looking to make your wedding breakfast memorable; something guests will rave about for months, then consider treating them to an unexpected course. From Amuse Bouche to a Hot Soup Shot, we have loads of tantalising ideas in the Wedding Menu section of our website.

What would you like to serve at your Wedding Breakfast?

Although our Wedding Co-ordinators can offer suggestions it’s almost impossible for them to pick out your perfect wedding breakfast menu from our extensive selection of tried and tested exquisite dishes. It’s like asking the DJ to pick your First Dance track.

Food is incredibly personal, that’s why we encourage you to design your own wedding menu, something that reflects your personalities and encapsulates your day. But don’t worry, we have loads of mouth-watering ideas to help you choose…

Great Ideas for your Wedding Breakfast Menu

Sometimes a spark of inspiration is all you need:

Ensarb Exclusive Catering Facebook Page regularly shares wedding menus served at The Ashes.

The Latest News section of our website has some great tips and ideas.

The Ashes Menu Pack is crammed full of tasty menu suggestions, you can download it from their website.

Coming Soon…you’ll be able to research ideas for your wedding menu using our fantastic new online Menu Selector which lets you browse through our Collections and mix and match dishes to come up with your favourite combinations. The Menu Selector is a great way to get inspired and offers you the flexibility to create your own mouth-watering menu.

Get in Touch

If you’d like to set a date for your Personal Consultation don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’d normally advise meeting up after you’ve attended your Tasting Day at The Ashes Venue.


Canapes at The Ashes


A well fed wedding guest is a happy wedding guest!

We know that you want all your guests to enjoy themselves at your wedding and offering them a selection of wedding canapés during the drinks reception is a sure fire way to impress.

If your wedding ceremony is before 1pm there is a good chance that many of your guests will have grabbed a quick breakfast early in the morning before travelling to The Ashes. Those guests will be pretty peckish after the ceremony and will really appreciate a canapé or two to keep them going until the wedding breakfast meal.

We asked our fantastic team of Wedding Co-ordinators about what makes the perfect wedding canapés:

Just Enough

You can serve as many canapés as you like but we’d generally recommend allowing 3 per person. That’s just enough to stave off their hunger and allow everyone to enjoy the drinks reception without ruining their appetite for the wedding breakfast meal.


It’s a good idea to choose a variety of canapés which appeal to the different age groups invited to your wedding. Children and Grandparents generally appreciate something easily recognisable such as sticky sausages and miniature sandwiches for example, whilst your other guests might enjoy something a little more adventurous; Filo wrapped king prawns with sweet chilli dipping sauce, mini beef wellingtons, monkfish wrapped in basil and pancetta…

Vegetarian Option

There are so many incredible vegetarian wedding canapés available that it’d be a shame not to include at least one vegetarian option.

Something Sweet

As the drinks reception draws to an end it’s lovely if you circulate a couple of sweet wedding canapés to signal the end of the canapé service. Popular favourites include miniature chocolate fudge brownies and fresh strawberries dipped in chocolate.


We believe the perfect canapé should look exquisite and have big bold flavours in stark contrast to its compact size.

There are loads more suggestions for wedding canapés on The Ashes website.

Please don’t hesitate to CONTACT US if you’d like to discuss your wedding canapés.


Wedding Drinks at The Ashes


Our complete wedding service includes the service of all your wedding drinks at The Ashes. We’ll supply all the appropriate glassware, waiting-on staff and bartenders to ensure the smooth flow of drinks throughout your wedding day.

There are 3 ways to supply your daytime drinks at The Ashes:

Supply Your Own –  The Ashes is a no-corkage wedding venue; you are welcome to supply your own drinks for both the drinks reception and your wedding breakfast meal without incurring any corkage or service fee.

Order from The Cellar – You can choose from the exceptional selection of discounted drinks available from The Cellar; this hand-picked selection is available to order direct from The Ashes on a sale or return basis.

Order a Drinks Package – Available to order direct from The Ashes, these generous drinks packages feature a superior selection of drinks at discounted prices, supplied in just the right quantity.

Let’s Talk

It’s important that you let us know what drinks you plan to serve at your wedding, there is limited storage at the venue so we’ll deliver most of the glassware on your wedding day together with any mixing jugs, ice or fruit that we might need to prepare your drinks beautifully.

We’ll get the opportunity to chat through your plans at your Personal Consultation with us but please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any queries you might have prior to that meeting.

We are fully equipped to handle the classics; a bit of bubbly, a lovely long drink such as PIMM’S and bottled beers for your drinks reception and wine throughout your wedding breakfast meal. If you’re toying with the idea of supplying drinks which might require specialised glassware please discuss this with us at the earliest opportunity.

Drinks Reception

When thinking about what to serve at your drinks reception consider that most of your guests will be ready for a drink; that’s great and your reception drinks should kick start your celebrations but if you serve very strong drinks to thirsty guests you may end up with some exceedingly tipsy guests a little too early in the proceedings!

You’ve put your heart and soul into selecting an amazing wedding breakfast menu, it’d be a shame if half your guests were too giddy to enjoy it.

That’s why the classics work so well; a glass of bubbly, a nice fruity PIMM’S, a bottled beer, they just take the edge off and help guests relax without getting them too inebriated!

Top Tip: Limit the choice of drinks; in our experience, offering a wide variety of different drinks results in a lot of waste and a slower drinks service.

Wedding Breakfast

Sharing a wonderful meal with friends while enjoying a glass of wine has to be one of life’s greatest pleasures. We’ll ensure that your red wine is stored at room temperature and opened in a timely fashion to ensure that it is at its best for your guests.

Just before you are due to enter The East Barn for your wedding breakfast, we’ll place a bottle of red and white wine together with a jug of fresh spring water out on the tables.

Throughout the meal we’ll regularly replace any empty bottles, ensuring a steady flow of wine throughout the meal. At the end of the meal, service of your daytime drinks ceases; if you’ve ordered your wine through The Cellar, then those wines will be stocked at The Bar for any guests wishing to enjoy more of it.

The Bar

It is our privilege to stock and serve The Bar at The Ashes which opens straight after your wedding breakfast meal. Guests will be pleasantly surprised by the very competitive bar prices which are in line with the local pubs.

Featuring draft ales, premium lager and Guinness on tap, the beer drinkers are well catered for whilst a selection of wines by the glass or bottle and a comprehensive choice of spirits, ensures that most tastes are catered for.

Please Note: Jenkinsons Caterers support Drinkaware, a charity which promotes responsible drinking and is committed to helping to reduce alcohol misuse and minimise alcohol-related harm. We want your wedding to be an enjoyable day for all and we reserve the right not to stock certain alcoholic drinks behind the bar which are commonly associated with excessive consumption and misuse.

If in Doubt, Give us a Shout!

Maybe you’d like some ideas on what to serve or some advice on quantities; whatever your query please give us a call or drop us an email, we’re here to help.  Contact Us

There is loads of practical information about when and how to deliver your drinks to The Ashes on their website too.

For a guide on quantities and how to create the Perfect PIMM’s Click Here.