Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Wedding Wednesday: Meeting with Our Caterer and Questions to Ask Your Caterer

Happy Wedding Wednesday!

What makes a Wednesday better than Wedding Wednesday - working from home on a snow day! Hehe

We met with our caterer a couple of weekends ago and I went with a list of questions to ask her just to make sure I covered all my bases. Since our wedding venue does not have a caterer we had to find our own, and what made it worse (or better depending on how you look at it) was we had a preferred food vending list to use. Luckily for us, the first one we tried we liked!

We met with our caterer at a local bookstore/coffee shop. She was quite a distance away from us so she offered to meet us half way. Which I thought was going the extra mile - literally. Haha. It's those little gestures that reel me in. :)

Anyway here are a list of questions I asked our caterer:

  1. How many weddings have you done? How long have you been in business? This tells you the longevity of the business and the possibility of your caterer either backing out on you or you can depend on them. For us, she has been in business quite a while and even runs her own restaurant. 
  2. Could you do a wedding for up to 150 people? Yes. 
  3. What is your culinary background, school? She graduated college. 
  4. Do you have a specialty or style IE Rustic or Italian? Our caterer doesn't have a specific style or specialty. Which helps for a wide range of foods instead of being stuck with just one type of option. 
  5. Do you provide bartenders, how many? Is soda, coffee and tea included in the price? Our wedding venue does not provide bartenders so this was a a big concern of mine. I had no clue where to find a bartender! Both sides of our families enjoy drinking so I knew one bartender wasn't going to cut it, and I didn't want huge lines at the bar. Luckily, our caterer can provide as many bartenders as we need without any additional charge. Coffee, tea, water, lemonade and iced tea is provided but fountain soda is not included. At the end of the night she is going to put out coffee and tea for our guests and have water at the tables for dinner. I am a little worried about no fountain drinks. I think we might just buy a bunch of 2 liter soda bottles and put them behind the bar and have them served in glass cups. It's the best solution we can come up with.
  6. Can specialty cocktails be made for our wedding and passed during cocktail hour? My fiance & I are planning a signature drink and would like them to be passed around during cocktail hour, and she is able to do that for us. That makes me happy. 
  7. Whom will be in charge of the overseeing of our event that day? I was worried she would have someone else come in the day of our wedding that we were not comfortable with, so I wanted to make sure it would be her and it will be. She will be overseeing the servers and will be there the entire night. 
  8. Is there a difference in price for children's meals as opposed to adults? This is important, especially if you have a lot of children coming to your wedding. Why should you pay full price for children's meals?! The meals that would be served to children are chicken tenders, applesauce and mac & cheese. She only charges $4.95 for children's meals!
  9. Do you offer to cut the cake and do you charge? Luckily for us, she does both and not at any additional costs. Some places will charge you up to $3.00 a serving, that's on top of what you pay per serving of your wedding cake!
  10. How many servers would you provide? For our size she will have 6 servers. We are having a formal sit down meal so I don't want people waiting around for the food, the more servers the better!
  11. How will the staff be dressed? I know this may sound dumb, but I want them to look professional, I don't want them wearing jeans to our wedding. She makes sure her staff is dressed in black and white attire. 
  12. How much time do you require for setting up and breaking down my event, and are there extra fees associated? She actually likes to get to the venue Thursday or Friday if it's a Saturday wedding to get set up. I like that she is punctual!
  13. What is the last date by which I can give you a final guaranteed guest count? She only needs 1 week prior to know the absolute guest count number. Which is GREAT, I know how people like to call last minute. We had that issue for our engagement party, so I'm real happy about that!
  14. How much of a deposit is required to hold my date? When is final payment due? We said yes to our caterer after we had our taste testing! We paid her a deposit and she wants payment about a week before the wedding. Works for us!

I am sure there are a bunch of other questions you can ask, but these are the questions I asked our caterer. I am sure as our wedding gets closer I will have more questions. haha. I guess it's better to be prepared than to not be!



Natasha xoxo said...

What an informative post... A friend of mine just recently got engaged. Totally sending her a link to this post :)

xo, tasha
twenty-something blog

Holly said...

Cake cutting fees are ridiculous! It's why we ended up doing cupcakes, haha!