18 Questions To Ask Your Caterer
The food and service provided by your caterer can have a big impact on the success of the event, so it’s important to choose a caterer that is reliable, experienced, and able to meet your specific needs. But with so many catering businesses to choose from, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Asking the right questions can help you find a caterer that is a good fit for your event and ensure that everything goes smoothly. In this blog post, we’ll provide an overview of the different types of catering services available and offer a list of important questions to ask your caterer to help you make an informed decision.
Overview of catering services
When it comes to catering services, there are a few different options to consider:
- Full-service catering: This type of catering includes everything from setup and service to clean up and tear down. The caterer typically provides the food, staff, equipment, and linens.
- Drop-off catering: With this option, the caterer prepares the food and delivers it to the event location, but does not provide any additional services or setup.
- Buffet-style catering: This type of catering involves setting up a buffet with a variety of dishes for guests to choose from. The caterer typically provides the food, staff, and equipment, but does not offer table service.
Depending on the size and type of event you are planning, one of these options may be a better fit for your needs. It’s important to communicate your specific catering needs and preferences with the caterer to ensure that you get the right type of service.
Questions to ask about menus and dishes
When choosing a caterer, it’s important to consider the types of menus and dishes that are available. Here are some questions to ask:
- What types of menus and dishes do you offer?
- Can you accommodate dietary requirements?
- Can you provide samples of your menus and dishes for us to review?
It’s also a good idea to ask about the caterer’s food sourcing and preparation practices. Here are some additional questions to consider:
- Where do you source your ingredients from?
- Do you use locally-sourced or organic ingredients?
- Do you have any certifications or awards for your food or catering services?
What types of menus and dishes do you offer?
I offer a varied range of menus including hot and cold nibbles, roasted meats and poultry, organic vegetables, seasonal salads, and a wide range of desserts & petit fours.
Whether you would like an elaborate silver-service experience or a traditional buffet, I can accommodate your requirements – one size does not fit all.
(I can also use your homekill meat if you would like)
Can you accommodate dietary requirements?
Yes. With 50 years of experience there isn’t much I haven’t accommodated at some point.
Can you provide samples of your menus and dishes for us to review?
Please visit www.charlottesoven.co.nz/weddings for menu options
Where do you source your ingredients from?
Ingredients are always sourced from the highest-quality suppliers. I personally do all the sourcing myself to ensure I can see exactly what’s going to end up on your plate.
Do you use locally-sourced or organic ingredients?
Most of my ingredients are locally sourced and can be sourced organically. I also pull from my own vegetable garden for seasonal produce.
Do you have any certifications or awards for your food or catering services?
- Cordon Bleu Certificate from The Cordon Bleu School, London
- New Zealand Beef and Lamb Excellence Award (9x time recipient)
Questions to ask about service and staff
In addition to the food, it’s important to consider the service and staff that the caterer will provide. Here are some questions to ask:
- How long has your business been in operation?
- Do you have experience catering events like mine?
- What is the staff-to-guest ratio that you recommend for events like mine?
- Are your staff members trained and experienced in catering and event service?
- Do you offer any additional services, such as event planning or rental services?
How long has your business been in operation?
With nearly 50 years of outside catering experience, I began Charlotte’s Oven in 2019.
Do you have experience catering events like mine?
Although I do recommend to get in touch with me directly to discuss, I can almost guarantee that I have all the experience required to make your day a memorable one.
What is the staff-to-guest ratio that you recommend for events like mine?
This is dependent on the menu format you choose, it can range from 1-40 to 1-10.
Are your staff members trained and experienced in catering and event service?
Yes. I only use trusted and experienced staff from the local community.
Do you offer any additional services, such as event planning or rental services?
Charlotte’s Oven does not offer any additional wedding related services, although I’m happy to recommend other local businesses for your needs.
Questions to ask about pricing and contracts
Finally, it’s important to ask about pricing and contracts when hiring a caterer. Here are some questions to consider:
- Can you provide a detailed quote or estimate for the catering services I am requesting?
- Are there any additional fees or charges that I should be aware of?
- What is the payment process for your services?
Can you provide a detailed quote or estimate for the catering services I am requesting?
Yes. After you choose from the menus on the website, we discuss and confirm your options, and I can send you a quote within 48 hours.
Are there any additional fees or charges that I should be aware of?
Quotes are priced per-head including labour and food costs. Transport is charged per km.
All quotes include GST.
What is the payment process for your services?
Bank transfer is the preferred method. I may ask for a deposit.
In conclusion, it’s important to do your research and ask the right questions when hiring a caterer for your event. By considering the different types of catering services available, the menus and food that are offered, the service and staff that will be provided, and the pricing and contract details, you can make an informed decision and choose a caterer that is a good fit for your needs. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and communicate your specific needs and preferences to ensure that everything goes smoothly on the day of your event.