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The Key Elements of Great Events

Posted by: | Posted on: June 1, 2018

How to Pick a Good Caterer

Whether it’s a wedding, a class reunion, a corporate meeting or any kind of event, picking a good caterer is crucial. But how can you find a good catering service, and how do you compare your options?

Recommendations

If you don’t have a lot of experience with caterers, you will have to begin to scratch. Ask for referrals from family members, friends, colleagues, etc., and read online reviews as well (stick to popular consumer websites to avoid being misled by fake reviews). You can also approach the management at your venue and ask for some names of good caterers they may have worked with before.

Kitchen

Prior to hiring a caterer, be sure you have seen their kitchen. Certainly, the environment must be clean, fresh-smelling, and overall professional. Anything short of that and you have a catering staff that has no genuine pride or interest in what they do – and one that you’re better off avoiding.

Menu

Because there is a whole variety of catering services out there, you need to pick the one that best fits your needs and requirements. Discuss menu possibilities with your prospective caterer, and don’t forget to mention any dietary guidelines that may have to be observed (for example, a guest having an allergy to nuts). You just want to enjoy your event instead of worrying about guests.

Working Staff

If you’re unsure about the number of people you will need for the event, check out the cheat sheet below:

Buffet – about two servers for each thirty guests For a large gathering, have two or three extra people to take charge of clearing dishes and restock chafing stations.

Sit-Down Meal – one server for every eight guests, plus extra servers to handle drinks

Bar Staff – one bartender/one bar-back per fifty guests You’ll need more bartenders if you plan to set up specialty drink stations.

Take note that you should have a captain of service for every six staff members to make sure everything goes smoothly.

Your Input

You may only want to outline a menu and let the caterer decide on everything else, as long as he produces the results you want. Still, the caterer should be willing to work closely with you at every stage of the event.

Menu Tasting

As you may guess, this is another important part of deciding to hire a certain caterer. You have to approve the menu and actually taste what’s on it before the actual event.

Price

Be specific regarding your budget and that the quote you are given already covers the caterer’s full service, from set up to pack up and all staffing issues. Finally, confirm with the caterer that there will be no hidden or additional fees and costs before signing the contract.

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