One of the main things that need to be impeccable for your wedding reception is the food. Therefore, it’s important that you find the right caterer that will leave your guests happy, satisfied and full.
Here are some tips in ensuring you are making a great choice in your Venue Caterer.
- Experience: Does your caterer understand your ‘taste’ for your wedding? If you are having a themed or culturally inspired wedding, you need to make sure that your caterer is not only experienced but is comfortable creating a menu that will suit your vision. The last thing you want is to have a completely disjointed event, not to mention horrible tasting food.
- Creativity:The difference with having a very colourful, structured and “eye-peeling’ plate as opposed to a dish that is sloppy is night and day. Your cuisine, despite the formality of your wedding, should always be masterfully developed and presented beautifully.Creativity is especially important if you are having a specific design concept or perhaps two different cultures joining as one. Fusion cuisine is increasingly popular and really can bring that out-of-the-box & personalized wedding to life. How about a Shrimp Tempura Pad Thai for a Japanese-Thai inspired wedding… ?!
- Service and Staffing: Having the right amount of experienced staff to pay attention to you and your guest is important. Your caterer’s attention to this detail is vital. You know your guests the best and it’s important that you communicate any specific needs you require. Additionally it is important that these needs are taken seriously and not shoved aside. Find out how many servers, bartenders and kitchen help will be hired to work your wedding. For example it is recommended that for every 12 people for a sit down dinner there is one server. For every 60-75 people one bartender and one bar helper. Also, be mindful that depending on your requirements, menu and venue needs, extra staff and cleaning costs might be needed.
- Budget & Quality: Your caterer can only do what your budget allows. Therefore, if it’s 5-course, Chateaubriand-main type of meal you are craving but your budget only allows for a 3-course Stuffed Chicken main, you’ll have to make some adjustments. Perhaps you can cut down your guest list or incorporate a gourmet taste in a different way. Keep in mind that where you see substantial price differences between caterers, that is a telltale sign that the quality in food you are getting will significantly differ. Price out what you can afford per person including taxes and add a 20% gratuity to get an estimate of your food spend.
- Comparing other options and get references: Meet and interview about 3 catering companies. By looking at their menus, ensuring they have a licensed kitchen and hearing feedback from other couples that have used them, you can make an informed decision. Even if they offer you a tasting, it’s best to see how they would work in a large crowd and how the food quality would be then. Some caterers and venues have select dinners set up a couple of times a year where their clients are invited to taste the food and experience the service. A red flag would be a caterer not interested in providing you with legitimate references or hesitant when you ask for a tasting. Keep in mind that if you do require a tasting prior to hiring, you will likely have to pay for that.