Tapas and Paella Rehearsal Dinner

304070_10150365754536973_631686972_8388232_1369035987_nFor our Wedding Rehearsal Dinner, I knew I wanted 4 key things: Our amazing families, a killer view, my favorite wine, and delicious food with a twist. The most important factor was my family. My brother Graham is on the left with his wife Ali, my brother Mike is on the right with his wife Abby, and my hubby and I are in the middle. We were able to celebrate with our mom’s, dad’s siblings, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandmas. Our groomsmen and bridal party celebrated with us as well. The night was magical because all of our favorite people came to support us.


Me and my friend Alexis!


Left to Right-My Aunt Dood, cuzster Carrie, me, and my mom.




Below, me and my mother in law. She flew out to CA from NJ. The night of our rehearsal dinner was her 10 year wedding anniversary to her husband Barry!


The View

My parent’s friends Jim and Kerry had a beautiful home, on a cliff, overlooking the ocean in Capistrano Beach. They were gracious in allowing us to use their home. It truly was the perfect venue. Check out the view! We married the next day at Casa Romantica, in San Clemente, CA. I kept the decor simple. I used old wine bottles (I managed to empty quite a few during the wedding planning phase), and kept the labels on (it was a pain in the A$% to take them off, so I opted to keep them on), and I filled them with various colors of Gerbera daisies that I purchased at Trader Joe’s that morning. I placed them in odd numbered pairs (3 or 5) around the space and added some tea light candles for ambiance.

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The Food

IMG_1761I love Paella. I found a great place in San Diego called San Diego Paella that not only caters parties, but they were willing to drive to Orange County to cater our event for a reasonable fee. The food was amazing and you were able to watch the chef make the food on premises. The guests loved it! All Paella prices included a Mediterranean Salad consisting of Spring mix lettuce, Feta cheese, sliced almonds, and Italian dressing served with French bread. We opted for Paella Tradicional which included Chicken, Mussels, Clams, Shrimp and Scallops at a reasonable cost of $18.50 per serving. We also ordered Paella Vegetariana which included Zucchini, Asparagus, Red Potatoes, Mushrooms, and Broccoli at a reasonable cost of $15.95 per serving. I would definitely work with this company again!

We wanted to stick with theme, so we also had tapas for our guests which included assorted cheeses (such as brie and manchego), assorted salamis, olives, tapenade, breads, almonds, and dried apricots. The tapas paired well with the Paella!

My Favorite Vino

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The wine for the evening included my favorite La Crema Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir and Edna Valley Chardonnay. We also had lemonade from Trader Joe’s, Sparkling Water, and Champagne. Of course we had our trusty lemon water too! (this is a staple at EVERY party I throw).


As a marker for guests to find the house, I used the wedding sign that my husband, dad, and I made for the wedding. Here are directions on how to make the sign!