7 THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND BEFORE SELECTING A CATERER FOR YOUR SMALL PARTY
As soon as you step out of a party, what is it that keeps lingering in your senses? Is it the decoration? The guests? The host? We all know the answer. It’s the FOOD! Food forms the essence of any party, be it good or bad. In fact, whether you admit it or not, the world knows that food can be the sole reason behind going to a party. Even when you take on the role of a host, what is the first thing that comes to your mind while planning a party? It’s food, right? When food dominates your party world, then selecting the right caterer becomes the most daunting task that you need to win. In order to ease your troubles, here is a list of things you need to keep in mind before you select a caterer for your small party.
- YOUR EVENT AND ITS BUDGET
The foremost thing that you need to decide is the size of your event as that would determine the kind of catering you require. There are many caterers specializing in small events and know exactly what you want. Once you have decided the size of your event, you will have to tackle the issue of the budget as this is the glue holding your party together. It is your budget that decides the menu and the kind of caterer you are looking for. Before deciding on the caterer, make sure to clearly mention your budget and ask for quotations beforehand so that budget doesn’t become a sore problem later on.
- UNDERSTAND YOUR NEEDS
The success of your event depends on the catering company and their provisions as it depends on your budget. Make sure to clearly understand your requirements and their compatibility with your catering company’s provisions. Find out to what extent alterations and modifications are available, or whether the scale of your event is handled by them. Make a clear note of the kind of guests you would be hosting and whether your catering company caters to special dietary needs or cooking methods. Get to know their provisions for things like staff, utensils, and leftovers.
- REPUTATION OF THE CATERER
You don’t just accidentally stumble upon the perfect caterer. You need to leave no stone unturned in finding the best caterer in town, the one with an impeccable reputation. Now, as far-fetched a dream as it may seem, an almost perfect caterer can certainly be found. And that happens through honest, unbiased reviews. Check out the reviews by previous clients, both good and bad. At the same time, let neither the bad reviews faze you, nor the good ones amaze you as different clients have different requirements and hence different reviews. Take a good look for yourself based on those reviews and then decide. You can also count on the word of mouth or references given by your acquaintances. All in all, use your own discretion before going for any caterer.
- EXPERTISE AND EXPERIENCE
A very crucial piece of information that you need to collect is regarding the legitimacy of the caterer you are hiring. You need to make sure to check whether their business has the proper licensing and authorization. Another important point is to ensure the qualification and experience of the chef and the staff you’re dealing with. You can ask for their certifications so as to ensure that you are hiring qualified people. A lot of catering companies have specialization chefs, who specialize in certain cuisines and styles. You can avail of the services of these experts so as to enhance your event.
- HYGIENE AND SAFETY
Hygiene is certainly the most vital issue that you need to take care of. Ask your caterer to assure you whether they are following the quality and safety checks. These assurances would include certifications mandated by the health department and those by the insurance agencies. You can also ensure the quality of the food they provide by asking to watch them amidst the cooking process, as most of the cooking at parties is done offsite. You can also request the taste-testing of their menu, provided they offer these facilities. Hygiene is something that cannot be compromised with and it is your full right to make sure that you are getting the quantity you asked for as well as the quality is maintained.
- LOCATION AND VENUE
A lot of caterers have provisions for a venue. You can choose whether you want to go with their venue or select your own. In case you decide to opt for the caterer’s venue, make sure to check out the venue beforehand, in order to confirm the location and type of the place. You can also check out the venue by going through the pictures provided by the caterer on their profiles, but a physical confirmation is a must. This is so because not only the venue but the area in which it is located also plays a very important role, in terms of convenience and safety of the guests. Try going for a venue that is easier to locate and meets your quality standards as well.
- CANCELLATION POLICY
Before you head towards making a deal with the caterer you have selected, you need to be aware of their cancellation policy. The future is uncertain and so is your future event. In case of any circumstance under which your party can’t take place, you shouldn’t be worried about huge losses. This is why you should be fully aware of the cancellation policy of your caterer so that in case of a cancellation, it doesn’t get ugly for either of you. As they say, hope for the best, but prepare for the worst!
Alright, so these were the 7 most important things to keep in mind before you pick your perfect caterer. Now let me give you one more very important piece of information with regards to party food catering. To make things more convenient and simpler for small party food catering, there is a new website called CaterFiller.com, where you can list good caterers with their specialized food packages. I am sure this will make your small party joyful. No more running around for caterers and no more haggling over prices. Choose the package of your choice or even customize one by going to the Make My Menu option. Now that you know what to do, the most important thing is to relax and enjoy your event!