You’d Better Think Twice Before Choosing a Caterer in London
What do you remember of your second
cousin’s wedding? Yes, that’s right! It’s the food. Catering is the most
important decision to make when planning an event. Bad food = a bad event. So
make sure to sweat the details before you choose a caterer. And when you’re in
London, the selection becomes even more difficult as the choice of event caterers
in London is endless. So make sure you keep these considerations in view before
making the final decision.
In-House Caterer or Not
Choosing the in-house caterer isn’t always disadvantageous. If you don’t have any idea which catering company to choose, the best possible choice is to go for a London venue with in-house catering facility. Consider the fact that these caterers are likely to deliver outstanding food and service which is why the venue has sealed a contract with them. Even if the venue allows outside caterers, make sure that you ask the event coordinator if they can recommend a company. Also, make sure to ask friends and family to shortlist the top three.
Know Your Budget
The first and foremost thing is to know your catering budget. Ask yourself how much important the food is in your event. Would a buffet style do it or do you want to serve a three-course sit down-meal? A few factors that can change the catering cost include the serving style (buffet, sit down, or platters passed), the number of guests, the number of courses you want, rentals, and of course, the experience of the caterer. The more flexible you are with these factors, the more chances you have to save money and create a menu tailored to suit your budget.
Ask Key Questions
Before actually scheduling any face-to-face interview with caterers, save your time and travel costs by asking a few questions on the phone. But before that, you should be able to answer a few questions about your event like the date, the reception venue, the duration, and budget. Here is a list of questions you can ask before picking the top three to schedule interviews with.
- Are you available for this date?
- What range of menus, cuisines, and courses do you offer within my budget?
- Do you offer rentals? And can I bring my own rentals?
- Do you offer alcohol? What’s the cost per bottle?
- Can I bring my own booze? Is there a corkage fee?
- How much time do you need before the event to set up?
- Who will be the event coordinator?
- How many people will serve the guests?
- Do you provide a wedding cake?
- Do you offer mixologists? If so, how many do I need?
- Do you serve the vegetarians and those with special dietary requirements?
- What’s the minimum and maximum number of guests?
- What’s the payment schedule?
- How much deposit is required for booking?
- Do you have a cancellation policy?
- Do you have a service charge? If so, what’s the average tipping cost?
Here comes the most important thing to consider before you choose a caterer. It’s simple yet a lot of people forget to ask this question. Make sure to check that they offer a menu tasting. You don’t want food that tastes something like two days old socks. Most of the companies happily arrange a menu tasting. Take a friend or your mother for advice. Taste a range of things to finalise a menu and make sure that you don’t have to worry about food anymore.
Look into Previous Events
Have you ever booked a photographer before looking at his portfolio? Then how can you book a caterer before looking at his previous events. It’s not just the food that matters. When it comes to creating a perfect event, you need to look into little details like how the food is presented, served, and how the waiters are dressed. Talk to the event caterer in detail about what kind of event atmosphere you are trying to achieve and what food type will complement it.
Choosing the caterer is half the battle when it comes to event planning. So, make sure that you do a lot of research before actually picking a caterer.
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