Tongues are wagging -- with some salivating and others going "yuck" -- over news reports that Chelsea Clinton's super-secret upstate New York wedding to Marc Mezvinsky this Saturday will feature a vegan menu and a gluten-free cake. The couple will throw at least one bone to meat eaters, though, by serving up some organic grass-fed beef.
While all-alternative banquet menus are still relatively rare -- caterers say they account for just a small sliver of the pie, or cake, as it were -- such requests are on the rise, a trend that is likely to continue in the wake of the former first daughter's wedding.
"This will empower people to make these requests," says Grace Clerihew, a principal at Table Tales, a New York City catering firm. "Prior to this, they might have thought it was not mainstream enough to even talk about, but now that they see it being done by such a public persona it becomes acceptable."
Chelsea likely chose her menu based on both personal preferences and health needs -- she is said to have been vegan since her teen years and to have a gluten allergy -- but her wedding menu should have a trickle-down effect nonetheless, says Clerihew.
It's already become standard practice for most caterers and restaurants to offer vegetarian options. Clerihew predicts this event will inspire them to explore vegan and gluten-free options "in a more inspired way."