A wedding in the Midlands is a magical affair, which will bring memories for many years onward. It is a fairy tale wrapped in rolling green hills and pastures, swathed in drifting mist, a colour palette of trees and rivers winding through valleys.
So what should you be asking your wedding caterer? Take a look at some of the questions we have compiled.
10 Questions for your Caterer
1. Have you ever catered an event at my venue?
It is a definite bonus if your caterer has had experience catering at the venue you have selected. They know the layout and know how things work. But if they haven’t, it would be a good idea for the caterer to visit to the venue to assess the layout and set up a meal plan according to the layout.
The layout of the venue can determine what type of meal would not be suitable. So it is good to discuss this and come to a decision with the caterer and venue.
2. What services are included?
It is important to know what is included in your service. When looking through your quote, remember that sometimes the little things beyond the quote count too, eg. tableside water service and wine pouring.
3. What services are excluded?
Another important point to note at your wedding is what services are not included. It is good to think about these before you speak to your caterer so that you can think about what services you need on the day. For example, serving the cake, pouring champagne for the toast, providing coffee service, and taking care of setting everything up.
4. What is the server to guest ratio?
This is the ratio of servers to guests at a particular wedding. If the wedding is more casual, you may need fewer servers than if it is a formal celebration. The budget and kind of wedding (buffet, family-style, plated) will help you in getting the right number here.
5. How many weddings have you catered?
This is not necessarily an indication of skill, but it will be important if a restaurant is catering to your meal. Catering for a wedding is quite different from sending out plates in a restaurant setting. If a caterer is new, they potentially bring fresh ideas and methods that could add something extra special to your day.
6. Where do you source your ingredients?
This could be a price point for you. Often the local caterers that do provide local and seasonal ingredients are a little more expensive. You would need to decide whether it is important for you to have premium ingredients and whether you are satisfied with the extra cost involved.
7. Who is handling rentals?
Before meeting with caterers, find out whether the venue provides rentals for tables, chairs, linens, cutlery, etc. If they are not, you know you need to check with your caterer if this is obtainable from them, and if this is included in your quote or not.
8. Will you prepare the dish differently on the day of the wedding?
If you have completed a tasting, will the dish necessarily be prepared the same way on the day of the wedding? You need to factor in whether the food will be in a heating tray and for how long. Sometimes, food may actually have more depth, due to the amount of time it has to develop flavour in comparison with a tasting.
9. What food do you get excited to make?
Instead of doing a dish from their past menus, why not try something that is different and fresh and that will get the chefs excited? What makes them excited to cook? Bringing in a fresh idea means happier catering staff and a more interesting meal for your guests.
10. What do you suggest?
As you are shaping your wedding meal plan, remember that your caterer is an important resource when you are not sure what will work. If you are getting some resistance to ideas, it may be that in their experience they have seen obstacles to the plan you may want to execute. Work together and trust your caterers experience.
This is likely to be one of the most memorable days of your life. Working together with your partner, your wedding caterer and wedding venue will enable it to run smoothly. The more you work together, the happier you’ll be for the occasion.