Whether you’re organizing a birthday party, wedding celebration, or random family gathering, the food makes or breaks the success of the event. It goes without saying that party-goers or attendees get excited about the food at events they’re invited to. And we wouldn’t be surprised. The type of food you serve in your event reflects your personality as an individual and branding as a company.
It doesn’t matter if you’re choosing your favorite fast casual burger chains or go-to gourmet restaurant. What matters is you pick the right catering service that caters to your event needs. Here are the only seven factors you need to consider when selecting a caterer for your party.
This guest post is written by Eliza Brooks.
1. Event theme
You can’t serve barbeque in a formal event, can you? Your event theme should be complemented by the type of food your serve. This will make a positive impact on your willing attendees.
Determine the theme of the event, so you can choose the type of dishes you serve. For instance, if you’re catering to French people, choose some French dishes that make their time worthwhile. On the other hand, if your event is for kids, then hotdogs, or spaghetti would be good ideas.
The most important thing is to match your dishes with the event theme. Relay this to the catering service, so they can also match the table arrangement with your theme.
2. Number of people they can cater
Before booking the catering service, it’s crucial to know the event size. After sending out your invitations, you should be able to know the estimated number of people who are attending. Next is to ask the caterer if they can serve 100 or even 500 attendees.
While some catering services might be coerced into agreeing for the profit, they might not be able to pull through. That said, check their previous events and assess whether it’s a big one or not. The last thing you want is to make your attendees go hungry because the caterer didn’t cook enough food due to incapability.
3. Your guests
Once your guests RSVP’d your invitation, get to know them a bit more. Know what their background is and what type of food they’re into. Also, it’s good to know if you have vegan, vegetarian, or pescatarian guests. This way, you can be prepared to tell the catering service of your choice to prepare some dishes strictly for these people.
4. Taste test
Once you and your catering service have agreed on the dishes you’re going to serve, it’s time to move onto the taste test. A taste test might not be necessary if a couple of your colleagues or friends have recommended and vetted for the caterer’s excellent food.
However, a taste test is a must when you’ve been in contact with the catering service for the first time. The last thing you want in your event is to serve bland and unappetizing dishes to your guests. This will turn off your attendees and will bring you a bad rap.
If the taste test goes well, then discuss the costs with the catering service of your choice. Be transparent about this step. This will ensure that the negotiation is seamless. Ask what the inclusions are in the cost.
Plus, you should ask what the payment method is. Do you pay the full amount upfront? Or do you pay half of the total amount and settle the balance after? Also, ask if there are additional fees in case you have other demands such as the number of staff you need or if you need additional manpower at the last minute.
Ask about how they prepare their food. What methods are they taking? What ingredients are they using? And where do they source their meat and ingredients? This will enable you to determine if the quality of the dishes and ingredients justifies the cost.
Also, ask about sustainability. When organizing a big event, trash is inevitable. As a responsible person or brand, you must show your attendees that you’re trying to create less impact on the environment. Ask the caterer if they use single-use plastic, plates, cups, or utensils. See if you can get them to change this if they are.
7. Online reviews
Another way you’ll know the quality of the catering service is by checking online reviews. Take time to do a background check and read through the clients’ reviews. Go to the caterer’s website and scroll through the testimonials. Keep an eye out for positive and negative feedback.
Once you choose the perfect catering service, your event could put you or your brand in the best light possible. You can gain respect from your attendees, which makes your time, money, and effort spent all worth it.