Eat, Drink & Be Merry!
Catering & More...
K-W has many, many professional event catering companies to choose from, but there are some things you need to know before jumping to the conclusion that you need one or before hiring one that isn't right for you.
What is a caterer?
A catering company offers a wide variety of menu options that you can choose from according to taste, price and service options. They also provide alcoholic beverages such as wine, champagne, and sprits. Their emphasis should be on service (getting the food from their location and into your guests' mouths in one piece) and one the fine cuisine itself. Caterers are versatile because they are used to operating outside of their own domain and kitchens. Essentially, they can come to you.
When or why would I use a caterer?
Caterers are excellent for any outdoor or offsite wedding receptions. For example if your wedding is in a tent, in a park, you're going to want a caterer. The most basic reasons being that they will show up with all of the materials required to keep the food hot (or cold, as the case may be), they will have helpful food servers in formal attire, and they can also attend to the alcohol, wine, etc. Many caterers have trucks and vans with their own power source/generator to operate anything that's power-dependant.
Another time that hiring a private caterer would be useful to you, is when you aren't particularly fond of the food or prices of food at the reception location you have chosen. Beware that there are several reception halls that don't allow couples to bring in their own caterers, because they provide full service catering themselves. (See list of halls that only do their own catering below.)
What can help me decide which caterer to choose?
So many things can predict how well your caterer will work with you on your future wedding day...
• How quickly they return your call and answer your questions?
• How is their attitude toward you? Are they happy you called or do they sound like your phone call is a nuisance? Did they laugh when you told them your wedding date or can they accommodate it?!!
• How long have they been doing catering?
• How long have they been doing catering FOR WEDDINGS? (corporate affairs may differ greatly from Weddings, make sure they've done this before)
• Do they allow you to sample different menu items?
• If not being specific about pricing, do they at least give a price range before you go out and see them? (you don't want to waste time with a price range that is way out of your budget)
• Is it really that much less expensive to bring in a new caterer than to use the catering services of your reception hall? Compare the two prices.
• Does the caterer offer extra attention to detail, so that you aren't having to follow up on his/her performance, timing, temperature of food, etc. on your wedding day?
• Call the caterer's references and when you do, ask specific questions so that don't cause you to get a generic answer such as "We hired them and they were good". Some examples of this would be...
• what did the caterer do that was more than you expected?
• what did the servers wear?
• was it a hot buffet or cold finger sandwiches that you served?
• how long did it take them to set up? how long to tear down?
• did you find the food be hot when served?
• did they prepare your cake for you?
• What costs are involved in the supplying and serving of alcohol?
• Have they ever worked in your location before?
• Do they prepare and serve the wedding cake? If so, is that for an extra fee?