Questions to Ask Your Caterer Before You Plan Your Menu

Planning an event takes a lot of work and attention to detail. Bringing in vendors can take a lot off your plate, but it is important you ask the proper questions and make sure you communicate clearly. Before you start planning the menu for your next catered event, ask these questions:

Are You Familiar with My Venue?

A carter must know the ins and outs of the venue. They will need to know where they will be able to set up, if there is a kitchen, and where there is access to electricity. If they haven’t worked at your venue in the past, make sure they know the details or have a chance to check it out in person.

Where Does the Food Come From?

Do you care if the food is local, organic, seasonal, or fresh? Discuss what you want and expect with your caterer in Philadelphia, PA before planning the menu.

Can You Accommodate Dietary Restrictions?

Do you or your guest have special dietary restrictions? Is someone attending your event a vegan, vegetarian, or is someone allergic to shellfish or gluten? Maybe you would like to have kosher food or a kid’s menu. Be sure to check with your caterer ahead of time to see if they can make accommodations.

Do I Have to Pick from What You Have or Are You Flexible?

Some caterers are willing to work with you to make a personalized menu, and others prefer to stick to items they have perfected. Do you want to include a special family recipe, a specific ethnic food, or a favorite food? Check that your caterer can make it happen.

What Type of Food Service Do You Offer and How Long Do They Take?

There are several different service style options, and they can significantly affect how your event goes. A buffet, plated dinner, stations, and family-style all have a very different vibe. Each service style also takes a different amount of time. Do you want the meal to be the main event and have time to linger, or would you prefer the food to be served as quickly as possible? Let your caterer know what you are picturing. They’ll be able to help you pick the best combination for your event. Also, think about how long your event is going to last. If you only have two hours and your caterers plated meals usually last three hours, you will need to choose different options.

Having a clear understanding of what you expect will help your caterer provide you with a memorable event. Don’t be afraid to ask for all the details, like if you can take the leftovers home. Set up a meeting with us today to plan your next event.

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