Selecting delicious food to serve at your wedding is a key component in the wedding planning process. On your wedding day, you are hosting one of the largest meals you will ever serve in your lifetime! Choose a catering company that fits your style, budget and needs.
Here are seventeen important questions to ask your caterer before saying bon appétit on your big day!
Questions to ask your Catering Company
1. Does the caterer specialize in certain types of food or service?
If you want to incorporate traditional customs into your menu or have specific dietary requests, you may want to confirm that the caterer has the ability to create custom, authentic cuisine to please your taste buds.
2. Can the caterer arrange for a tasting of the specific foods you're interested in prior to hiring? If not, can you try the food after the contract is signed?
Ask the caterer if you can do a taste test or samples of all the foods you are interested in for your wedding day.
3. What is the caterer's average price range?
Are costs itemized depending on the foods you choose, or is there an all-inclusive flat rate? What would that include (linens, tax, and gratuity)? Does the caterer have printed price sheets for food selections?
4. How involved is the caterer in a typical reception?
Does the caterer work like a wedding coordinator or banquet manager, cueing the band, telling the couple when to cut the cake, adjusting the schedule if guests don't seem ready to sit down to dinner?
5. Will the caterer provide tables, chairs, plates, table linens, silverware, salt-and-pepper shakers, and more?
Ask to see these items to make sure they're acceptable. Do you have to rent tables, place settings, or other equipment? Or will they arrange for the rentals?
6. Who on the catering team will be the main contact?
Will the same person you work with when planning also oversee meal service on the day of the wedding?
7. Will the caterer work any other weddings on the same weekend, the same day, or at the same time as yours?
8. Does the caterer handle all table settings?
Will they put out plates, silverware and additional tabletop decorations such as escort cards and favors?
9. Will the caterer provide wait staff?
How many would they recommend for the size of your wedding? What will the waitstaff wear?
10. How accommodating or flexible is the menu?
Will the caterer be willing to include a recipe you provide such as a special family dish, or an appetizer with some sort of sentimental significance?
Can they prepare vegetarian, kosher, kids, or halal meals for just a few of your guests?
11. Where will the food be prepared?
Are there on-site facilities, or do you, the caterer, and the site manager need to make additional arrangements? If the caterer must bring in his own equipment, is there an additional fee?
12. Does the caterer work with fresh (not frozen) food?
13. Does the caterer have a license to prepare and serve food?
14. Can the caterer provide alcohol? Or can you handle the bar separately?
If you can provide it, is there a corkage fee? How and when will you get the alcohol to the caterer? If the caterer will provide it, do they have a flexible wine list, and can you make special requests? How is this list priced?
15. How will the caterer arrange the food on the buffet table or on plates?
Ask to see photos of previous work displays to better visualize how your menu will be displayed for your reception.
16. Can you speak to previous clients?
(Get at least two references that had a similar number of guests and a similar menu style (buffet or sit-down)
17. What additional fees are there, if any?
Is there a cake-cutting fee?
Travel fee over a certain distance from their headquarters?
Photography: Kiran Photography