Inspiration & Tips

Established in 1941, Commellini Estate is a fourth-generation, family owned wedding venue and caterer that serves the Inland Northwest with all-inclusive onsite wedding packages and customizable catering services.  Located in North Spokane, tucked alongside Dartford Creek and surrounded by towering  pine trees, Commellini Estate has been proudly influencing the Spokane food and event culture for decades. With that tradition, as well as deep ties to nature and the community, comes a certain sense of responsibility.

With the original buildings and property serving a dual purpose as both business and home of the Estate’s founders, Albert and Leda Commellini, the importance of developing sustainable practices for the betterment of future generations was recognized early on. The history and family recipes of Commellini Estate have been built on not only supporting local business and the community, but on creating a culture of  ecological balance. That longstanding tradition continues today as Commellini’s shops locally and partners with local farmer’s markets to source the freshest products available as a nod to their storied past.

While many have heard the legends surrounding Commellini Estate of  underground tunnels, midnight bootleggers, and visits from famous patrons, few know the agricultural roots of the Estate. In 1941, Leda Commellini, the family matriarch and heart of the then named Commellini’s Restaurant, was incredibly passionate about the quality of ingredients served to her customers. So much so, that along with her brother Albert, they opened the AC Chicken Ranch behind the restaurant in order to supply the freshest poultry possible for her now famous Chicken Cacciatore, amongst other dishes. At the height of its operation, the ranch had 100,000 chickens in various stages of development. Known for their community engagement, Albert and Leda ensured the AC Chicken Ranch supplied not only Commellini’s, but multiple other local businesses as chickens were in short supply during WWII. Even though the chicken ranch has long been closed, Leda’s passion and strict standards for her ingredients carries on to this day in every recipe prepared.

Today, in an effort to maintain those sustainable practices, Commellini Estate participates in three local farmers’ markets. It is here that relationships have been formed  with local vendors such as Browning Beef, to continue to provide  customers with the freshest ingredients possible. For example, Browning Beef cattle ingest only what a cow would naturally, grass in the summer and hay in the winter months. The stress-free environment and natural food sources have noticeably and positively impacted the caliber of the dishes.  Efforts to become more sustainable derive from a desire to support the local economy while simultaneously  providing quality products for  customers in a manner that contributes to the environment’s well-being.

The importance of supporting local businesses and taking steps to become more sustainable in everyday life is more prevalent now than ever before. While you don’t need to start your own chicken ranch to make an impact, here are some steps you can take and questions you can ask your caterer & wedding venue to incorporate a sustainable approach to planning your wedding.

  1. Food-based centerpieces are a fun and sustainable element that can be incorporated into your wedding reception. This is where your food elements, whether that be appetizers or a full meal, can be designed into a creative, memorable, and functional centerpiece. Commellini Estate offers a variety of options for food centerpieces including a seafood tower, antipasto platter, or a bread sampler. Each of these can be designed differently to better suit your creative vision or the theme of your event.
  2. Be sure to ask your caterer about their packaging practices and where they source their ingredients. These small details can have a big impact on both the quality of the product you receive, and the overall environmental impact. For example, do they use recyclable “to-go” containers or rely on styrofoam? Can they tell you where they source their meats and produce from?
  3. Another little thought of, but highly important consideration, is what happens to the leftover food at the end of the reception? Commellini Estate always makes sure the couple goes home with a recyclable, packaged “to-go” box for a late night treat, and anything remaining is packaged into environmentally friendly containers to be taken home by friends and family of your choosing.
  4. When it is time to sit down and talk numbers with your caterer, don’t be afraid to ask for advice on how much food you should order with a goal of minimizing waste. It can be tricky to make sure you are ordering enough food for your reception without over-ordering, and any catering professional should be able to provide a realistic estimate.

As practices are constantly evolving, Commellini Estate takes steps each day to ensure they are building a future with you and their community  in mind.  As a wedding venue and caterer in Spokane, Commellini Estate strives to not only provide the best quality products available, but to create a culinary experience you and your guests will never forget. Let’s honor history as we build our future together. 


{all images courtesy Stolen Images Photography}