Having a big event, like a wedding or a corporate party, can be really fun. And chances are, you'll have such an event at some point—88% of people get married at least once in their lifetimes, and after-wedding parties increased by as much 11.5% in one year recently. Of course, actually throwing the party is a whole different story.
There is a lot to keep in mind and coordinate, which is why party planning is mostly left up to the professionals. However, one of the most important parts of having such an event is enlisting the perfect event catering company. Check out these tips for narrowing down and honing in on a company:
1. Narrow Down the Field
Are you having a corporate theme party, a wedding, or a sweet sixteen? Make sure to find a catering company that is experienced in your specific type of event, event location, and time.
2. Visit Their Location
Even though your event most likely won't take place at your caterer's premises, it is still a good idea to check out what their location looks like. Many people find it helpful to meet face-to-face before doing business with someone.
3. Have a Menu Tasting
For big events, a caterer should be ready to prepare you a tasting menu so that you can properly make choices for what you want on your actual event menu! Plus, spending a couple hours tasting all sorts of delicious food will be really fun! Make sure to bring along a friend to help you make decisions. Be mindful that tastings are not free unless specifically noted by the caterer as part of the negotiations. Tastings can be costly for the caterer.
4. Customer Reviews
Everything might look great in theory, but how will it work out in practice? Seek out opinions and testimonials from previous clients. Make sure to ask how the caterers performed after a rapid change of plans or during the busiest times of the night. You aren't necessarily looking for perfect reviews, just evidence that the company is established in your area.
5. Consider Cost
Obviously, you'll need to remain within your budget, so make it clear to your chosen event catering professionals that if any changes, extras, or unique ideas are going to cost extra, you need to know. It's a good idea to keep your search narrowed to companies that are within your budget in the first place, so don't be afraid to bring up your budget early and often.
Whether you're looking into corporate event catering or wedding catering options, you are sure to find the perfect company if you follow these simple tips. And of course, don't forget to ask about the bar! Almost a quarter of your catering budget will go towards the open bar if you end up opting for one!