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Choosing the Right Caterer

Choosing the Right Caterer


Exceptional food is an integral part of any party so one must choose a catering service wisely!

  • It is important to do a lot of research, check references, and often request a sampling to make your final decision.
  • Be specific with your catering needs in order for a caterer to provide an accurate estimate for your event. It is important to communicate your needs clearly.
  • Do you have a location for your party/event reserved and is there a kitchen on site?
  • Find out if the potential caterer has a minimum guest requirement.
  • Take into consideration that some of your guests may have special dietary needs and be certain to communicate this with your caterer.
  • A great caterer will be ready for any surprise that may surface, but at what cost to you? Ask.


WHAT IS YOUR CATERING BUDGET?

  • Discuss your budget with your caterer and what options are available.
  • Ask yourself, do you prefer a buffet style, reception style, or a sit down dinner for your guests?
  • Be clear about your proposed menu, do you have a theme or style at the event that will be reflected in the cuisine?
  • Your budget may or may not determine how flexible your caterer is to meet your needs.
  • Keep in mind; it is the type of food that often determines the bulk price of the catering job.
  • Request, if the caterer will provide a detailed contract of service and outline what the payment terms will be.


WHERE DOES THE CATERER SHOP?

  • Does the caterer use fresh or frozen food for recipes?
  • Is the produce grown locally? Is it organic?
  • Will any of the dishes be pre-made and then frozen until the party/event?


DECORATIONS

  • Does the potential caterer supply fresh floral, linens, lighting packages, tables & chairs?
  • It is important to be very clear in what your event needs are, and what the caterer will be supplying.
  • Is a menu board provided for the guests that describes the ingredients of the dishes being served?

WAITSTAFF

  • Will the catering company provide wait-staff? What is their required dress code?
  • What is the ratio of servers to guests? A rule of thumb is one server for every 10 guests.
  • Be certain to ask your potential caterer if taxes and gratuities are included in the final bid.
  • What happens to the leftovers? Often, upon request, a catering service will compile a food basket at no additional charge for the host or hostess of the event.
  • Don’t make assumptions…Ask questions and make sure you’re on the same page.


Information provided by Cuisiniers located in Florida:  5510 Lake Howell Rd., Winter Park, FL 32792 (407) 975-8763

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