How to Choose a Caterer for Your Event
Whatever event you’re planning on – a wedding, a fundraiser, a business expo, etc. – it’s important to choose the right caterer. We all know how important food is! But what are the things you have to consider when choosing a caterer?
If this is your first, heed the following tips:
Because you’re a newbie, you’ll have to start from scratch. That means getting recommendations from friends and relatives, and checking out online reviews. If you have booked a venue, ask the management for a little help.
Inspecting the Premises
This is a critical consideration. Before you choose a catering service, visit their kitchen. The area must be organized and sanitary, period. Otherwise, you’ll only be putting your health and that of your guests in danger.
Reviewing the Menu
Not all caterers are suitable for all types of events, and certainly, you’ll want one that fits your needs to a T. During your meeting, discuss any menu ideas you may have in your mind. They should welcome your inputs, or you can find yourself another prospect. If you or any of your guests has allergies to certain foods or other dietary restrictions, mention them as well.
If you’re uncertain about the size of your staff, below is a quick guide:
> For buffets, you’ll be fine with two servers for 30 people. If you have a larger group, you’ll need two or three more runners for restocking chafing stations and clearing dishes.
> For a sit-down meal, one server per table of eight is good enough, but do add more servers for the drinks service.
>If you have a bar, it should be okay to have one bartender for every 50 guests, plus more bartenders if you want to add specialty drink stations.
> For every six members of staff, have one captain of service.
Testing the Menu
All professional caterers offer menu tasting for their customers. The whole world may think their food is great, but unless you do, they’re not right for you. The menu must be your choice totally, and of course, it’s important that you like their food.
Don’t go for a caterer just because they charge cheap, but cost will always be important nevertheless. Be clear about your budget, and be sure that the quote you’re given already covers everything. Lastly, before you sign the contact, ask them if there are any hidden or additional fees. You don’t want that kind of surprise.
Apparently, it’s going to take time finding a good caterer. But rest assured it will be time well spent.