Spruce Mountian Ranch

Top 10 Questions to Ask Your Caterer


Food has a magical way of bringing people together, even during ordinary days, making it an important piece of life. It is especially important,then, to ensure that the food served at a wedding is extraordinary— what better day to take advantage of its powers to bring people together? In order to fully enjoy the food atyour wedding, finding the right caterer is a good first step. Epicurean Group, Occasions Catering, and Biscuits and Berries all weigh inon what questions they think that couples should beasking to help discern which caterer is the perfect choice. These questions also help to eliminate any confusion between the couple and the caterers! Thus, Spruce Mountain Ranch presents “ The Top 10 Questions to ask your Caterer.”

  1. Know what you have to work with:“ How do you work with different budgets?” Epicurean Group advises couples to have a good idea about where their catering budget stands before meeting with a company. That way, both the couple and the catering staff can create a vision and menu from that budget. When neither party knows exactly how much money there isto work with, itis very challenging to put together a wedding feast. Conversely, understanding the financial side of the plan helps caterers know how to best serve a couple.
  1. Have an idea of what you’re paying for: “ Why is catering soexpensive? Are additional costs going tobe added tomy bill after I book with you?” Before writing the check, know what the allotted money will cover and whether more will be needed later onin the process. Nothing is more frustrating in the wedding planning process than thinking one aspect of the big day is taken care of, only to realize that there are more expenses to pay for. Occasions Catering shares that being up front about the financial aspect ofcatering can save both money and headache down the road.

  2. Ask about taxes:“ How are the taxes applied tomy bill?” While the process of applying taxes to food items based on the location ofthe venue may seem intimidating to a couple, caterers are very knowledgeable in handling this process. Biscuits and Berries shares that asking about the taxes (both rates and application) whendiscussing others costs and the budget as a whole, can bebeneficial.

  3. Make a decision on the food itself:“ When should I schedule a tasting?” It may seem obvious, but tasting the food before the big day is important— finding outon the wedding day that the mustard sauce on the chicken is not what the couple desired will only create stress on a day that should be only bliss. Tasting several options, thinking over choices, assessing the budget, and making a decision are all parts of a process. Asking when to set up the tasting, however, is the first step! Having plenty of time for this is helpful.

  4. Understand the staffing situation: “ How do you train your staff? How are events staffed?” Some catering companies send a large number of caterers to ensure everything is completed in a timely, efficient manner, while others prefer to send smaller teams to keep costs down. These are things that couples should be aware of before the big day. Asking about training and numbers of staff helps the couple to have an idea of how the food service will run during the wedding.

  5. Be aware ofwho will arrange the rentals:“ Do you help coordinate rentals?” Biscuits and Berries explains that rental coordination is something brides often worry about. They aren’t always certain of who should take care of the order, or what quantities of which items should be reserved, so asking about this process is helpful. Biscuits and Berries, along with other caterers, assists couples in the process of event rentals, causing less stress on the lovebirds.

  6. Know what service you want:“ How do I decide which service style is right for me?” For some larger weddings, buffet-style isideal, allowing guests to access food at a faster rate. For other weddings, however, family-style dinner can create a more intimate atmosphere. Occasions Catering explains that catering experts are trained to know which style will work best for which couple, making this an important question.

  7. Understand menu options:“ Can you provide special menus and handle food allergies?” With so many dietary restrictions and preferences, couples are finding that a major concern whenchoosing a caterer is whether or not they can accommodate the different dietary requests of their loved ones. Occasions Catering recommends asking about different menus when selecting a caterer to ensure that all ofthe guests will be able to eat and enjoy a delicious meal that fits with their preferences.

  8. Ask about different meal pricing:“ How much do you charge for kids and vendors?” Occasions Catering shares that many companies offer discounted pricing for kids’ meals, as they are typically either smaller portions or custom plates of different food. Asit has become customary to feed event staff as well, itis also crucial to know the cost of vendor meals. Then, keeping in account how many children and vendors will be eating at the wedding, couples can choose what fits best with their budget.

  9. Stick to the vision:“ How can you make my goal of [fill in your vision here] happen?” Epicurean Group explains that it’s helpful toknow right away what the bride and groom envision for their big day. When the caterer is informed of the main goals the couple has (great food, an intimate atmosphere, stunning table settings, etc.), itis much easier to help plan and execute that vision. Staying true to a wedding vision, and communicating it well to the caterers, helps everything come together perfectly on the big day!

**A warm, Spruce Mountain Ranch “Thank You”to the fabulous caterers who provided their helpful insight for this blog! All three ofthese companies are onthe ranch’s approved catering list, and all three of them do fabulous work. To learn more about them, visit the links below!

Biscuits and Berries: http://www.biscuitsandberries.com/home

Epicurean Group: http://epicureangroupco.com/about-us/

Occasions Catering: http://www.occasionsdenver.com/

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