While choosing a banquet hall for a wedding, you cannot make compromises, for the sake of a beautiful interior, agreeing to a kitchen that does not suit you. Just order wedding catering and choose your wedding dinner dishes without being limited to the restaurant menu.
Sometimes catering is just irreplaceable. If your celebration takes place on the site without your own kitchen, in a private house, in a tent or in the open air, then you cannot do without an on-site food service. How to choose a good catering service for a top-notch banquet? We will talk about this in today’s article.
- Decide on the type of catering
A classic banquet, a wedding brunch, a buffet with several stations, a la carte service and waiters, a self-service buffet – it is important to understand which format of the event is closer to you and will be more appropriate for your wedding. This will determine what services, in addition to the kitchen, you need from the catering company.
For a classic banquet, you need furniture, table linens and beautiful serving dishes. For the buffet table, beautifully decorated tables or stations with snacks and drinks are important, which will correspond to the concept of the wedding. In self-service buffet, a large role is played by the rapid replenishment of the assortment of portioned snacks and common dishes, as well as unobtrusive but prompt cleaning, because there should be no mess on the buffet tables.
- Choose a company based on the number of guests
The scale of a banquet or buffet depends on the number of guests at your wedding. If you are planning more than a hundred guests, then choose a large catering company. You will need a large amount of furniture, dishes and a decent staff of chefs who can cook several dozen hot dishes at the same time.
Be sure to check how many waiters will be working at the event. It is important that meals are served on time and drinks are regularly updated so that guests do not have to wait or serve themselves. Also pay attention to the amount of spare crockery, cutlery and table linens that the catering service is ready to provide in case something breaks or the tablecloth or cutlery needs to be replaced.
- Study the reviews, look for the recommendations of friends
Like many wedding services, catering services are best chosen based on recommendations and reviews. Ask your friends and family to advise you on a good company that you have already used before. It also makes sense to ask for a recommendation from your wedding planner or another professional whose opinion you trust.
If there is no one to ask and you are preparing the wedding yourself, then start with Google and search in social networks. Remember that the first lines of the target query are not taken by the best companies, but by those that paid for advertising. This is also not bad, which means that the company has the opportunity to invest in its promotion. Write and call all companies from the first page of the search, describe the format of your wedding, the number of guests and the budget, and ask to draw up an approximate version of the menu. If you were answered quickly and offered not one, but 2-3 menu options, this is already a good sign.
Catering is not only food, but also a comprehensive service. Therefore, the ability to work with a client and pleasant communication of the staff play an important role in choosing a reliable company.
Stop at 2-3 variants that seem most suitable for you and make a personal meeting. Before going there, study the reviews on the work of local catering services from your list. We advise you to look for them not only on the pages of these companies, but also in independent sources: on forums, in discussion sections on wedding Internet resources, in social networks of wedding organizers who have already worked with these contractors.
- Specify which services are included in the price and which are paid separately
In the process of drawing up the estimate, you may be surprised if the accompanying catering services in the company of your choice are paid separately. We are talking about the rental of furniture, dishes, table textiles, the decor of the venue for a banquet or a buffet table, waiters’ services (does the company have its own waiters or are they third-party employees).
It is also worth clarifying the issues of catering meals delivery, cleaning after the event, negotiate the opening hours of the service and the possibility of its extension, the exact time of arrival at the site on the day of the celebration, agree on tasting the menu, etc. All this will add up to the final cost of catering for your event.
- Arrange a tasting
Tasting the menu is the most important stage in preparing for a wedding. In no case should you neglect this service, because the guests’ impression of the wedding depends on the quality of the dishes and their taste. Many companies provide free tasting as part of catering, for some this service is paid separately. In any case, having tried the dishes of the wedding menu in advance and making your own adjustments, you will be sure of the impeccable taste of the treats at your celebration.
In addition, this is a good opportunity to test the quality of the service and the beauty of the food presentation. If you did not like the work of the staff at the tasting, then you can hardly expect a different attitude to the process at the wedding itself.
Nowadays there are catering services that even provide vegetarian and even vegan menus that are no less sophisticated and spectacular than traditional banquet meals.
Couples are increasingly choosing catering because it is a modern service that follows trends and keeps up with the times. Best catering companies are ready to experiment, they can design a special menu specifically for your event and offer a wide variety of dishes from unusual, expensive, exotic ingredients that are rarely found on a standard restaurant menu. Catering services are usually approached by people who want something more than Julien and Caesar, and are willing to pay for exclusivity and personalized service.