This adventurous New Jersey couple, Sharon + Jake, planned a magical wedding week in Costa Rica. They spent the first few days relaxing and adapting to paradise. They waited excitedly as their guest list of 80 started to arrive one by one. On the first day, they planned a sunset cocktail party for everyone. The day before the wedding, they planned a rehearsal dinner on the beach to welcome their closest loved ones and eat some yummy local food.
Sharon + Jake headed down early from their boutique hotel for a sunset photoshoot on the beach of Langosta with Costa Vida Photo. As their toes hit the warm sand they instantly started to giggle and headed towards the rocky shoreline. The clouds were wispy and created cotton candy skies that turned to a moody view as the minutes passed. The sun slowly slipped into the waves and the couple headed up to the rehearsal venue to meet their guests. Everyone was drinking cocktails and mingling when they arrived. As night started to take over the sky, they all took their seats for a delicious Mediterranean Fusion dinner.
Wedding Rehearsal Appetizers
Green papaya, broccoli basil, and cilantro peanuts in lemon chili sauce
Calamari tamarind sauteed served along with garden veggies lemon chili sauce
Tuna tartar with avocado, chilies, and sesame oil
Mini kebabs served with tahini sauce
Wedding Rehearsal Dinner Menu
Cauliflower sauteed with olive oil, tahini, and scallions over tomato salsa
Moroccan style couscous with fresh veggies
Mahi on a bed of green risotto with lemon and chives.
Tenderloin and fresh veggies
Sharon and Jake both come from big close-knit Jewish families. They wanted to focus on speeches for the rehearsal dinner night to save time during the wedding day timeline. After everyone placed their order, the blessing of the wine and challah started. Challah is usually parve, which means it doesn’t contain dairy or meat, which are important in the laws of Kashrut. Most bread contains butter or milk but Israeli challah contains eggs or olive oil in the dough as well as water, sugar, yeast, salt, honey, and sometimes raisins and topped with sesame. Challah has a unique look. It is a braided loaf of eggy, shiny, slightly sweet bread.
This has become a tradition because, in the Torah, God instructs Moses to set aside a portion of each loaf and use it as an offering to local Jewish priests. The tradition is known as the separation of the challah. For this wedding weekend, they had 2 challahs – one for rehearsal on Friday and one for the wedding on Sunday. This was led by the Rabbi and also the bride’s aunt.
After the blessing, the appetizers served family-style. Once the appetizers are served, the speeches begin! First, the Mother of Bride made a touching toast about raising Sharon and all her life lessons growing up. The groom’s best friend had a comedic speech followed by the sisters of the groom who brought out all the old memories. Lastly, the maid of honor said the last speech mentioning how she knew from the start that this love story was unlike any other! It was truly the perfect night to kick off the wedding weekend!