The Washington Post

Buckingham Palace readies for royal wedding reception


The State Dining Room at London’s Buckingham Palace is among the rooms to be used during the queen’s reception following Prince William’s wedding to Kate Middleton. (Nick Ansell/POOL PHOTO VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Buckingham Palace is being spruced up ahead of next month’s royal wedding.

After Prince William weds Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey on April 29, Queen Elizabeth II will host about 600 of the 1,900 guests for a lunchtime reception at Buckingham Palace, her official London residence. Nineteen state rooms will be open, the Daily Mail notes, and guests will be allowed to “wander through areas normally reserved for heads of state and other dignitaries in the palace’s west wing, including the White and Blue Drawing Rooms, the Music Room and State Dining Room, all of which date back to the 1820s.”

Guests are to be offered canapes and champagne “from the moment they arrive,” Edward Griffiths, deputy master of the household, told the paper.

The Telegraph reports that the queen’s head chef, Mark Flanagan, has “promised an all-British menu of hot and cold canapés.” Flanagan would not divulge specifics of the menu but said that “we always concentrate on showing off the best of British produce.” Vegetables, game and other ingredients are likely to come from the queen’s estates.

The Telegraph noted that:

“A typical canape selection at the palace includes smoked salmon on a beetroot blini; confit duck-leg terrine with smoked duck and pear chutney; quails’ eggs with celery salt and Ragstone goats cheese with caramelised walnuts and parmesan crisp.

“The sweets made by the pastry chefs, which, like the canapés, are made to be eaten in two bites, may include dark, milk and white truffles, blood orange pate de fruit and raspberry financiers.

“The 21 chefs and three pastry chefs working in the basement kitchens will not be able to see any of the television coverage of the wedding, as they will be working frantically on putting the finishing touches to the canapés before making dinner for the bride and groom’s close family.”

Click here for The Post’s photo gallery of palace preparations and the royal couple.

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