This is a big element of the wedding budget and for asian wedding the catering and the venue costs run into their thousands of pounds, catering costs of around and above £20,000 are not untypical. Hence it is important that you get this element right and also need to make sure that you have the caterer that meets with your needs. Remember if they do not get the food right, the last thing you will get from your guests is probably be a quick exit and a trip to the local Kentucky.
We have emphasised the above point since majority of asian wedding service providers take full payment of all the costs before the event. Therefore to claim back any costs for a botched service is very unlikely to the reimbursed. It is here that I would also suggest that you look to taking out an event insurance to cover you against unexpected situations.
The following is a set of questions you need to ask your wedding caterer prior to booking them and also what you need to be aware off is that the tasting should be done at one of their actual weddings where they are catering. It is here that you will get a true taste of their food where they are preparing and cooking for four hundred guests which is not uncommon for an asian wedding.
These questions have been obtained from “The Wedding Knot” website.
Does the caterer specialise in certain types of food or service? (They should provide you with sample menus to review.) Find a wedding caterer who can make a memorable meal.
Can the caterer arrange for a tasting of the specific foods you’re interested in prior to hiring? (They should.) Schedule a tasting if you get a good vibe.
What is the caterer’s average price range? Are costs itemized depending on the foods you choose, or is there an all-inclusive flat rate? What would that include (linens, tax, and gratuity)? Does the caterer have printed price sheets for food selections? Make sure there’s room in your wedding budget.
How involved is the caterer in a typical reception — does she work like a wedding coordinator or banquet manager, cueing the band, telling the couple when to cut the cake, adjusting the schedule if guests don’t seem ready to sit down to dinner? (You will need to find someone to fill this role — if your site manager or caterer isn’t going to do this, think about hiring a wedding coordinator.)
Will the caterer provide tables, chairs, plates, table linens, silverware, salt-and-pepper shakers, and more? Ask to see these items to make sure they’re acceptable. Do you have to rent tables, place settings, or other equipment? Or will they arrange for the rentals? If not, find wedding rentals in your area.
Who is the main contact? Will the same person you work with when planning also oversee meal service on the day of the wedding? (You want this to be the case.)
Will the caterer work any other weddings on the same weekend, the same day, or at the same time as yours? (You want to be sure they will devote sufficient attention to you.) You may want to pass on a smaller outfit who indicates they have another job or two scheduled for that day.
Does the caterer handle all table settings? Will they put out place cards and favors?
Will the caterer provide wait staff? How many would they recommend for the size of your wedding? What will the waitstaff wear? (Top caterers say they always use their own serving personnel, even if the site’s staff is available, because they understand the caterer’s way of doing business.)
Will the caterer be willing to include a recipe you provide, like a special family dish, or an appetizer with some sort of sentimental significance? Can they prepare vegetarian, kosher, kids, or halal meals for just a few of your guests?
Where will the food be prepared? Are there on-site facilities, or do you, the caterer, and the site manager need to make additional arrangements? If the caterer must bring in his own equipment, is there an additional fee?
Does the caterer work with fresh (not frozen) food?
Does the caterer have a license? (This means her business has met health department standards and has liability insurance — make sure this includes a liquor license if you’re having a bar.)
Can the caterer provide alcohol? Or can you handle the bar separately? If you can provide it, is there a corkage fee? How and when will you get the alcohol to the caterer? If the caterer will provide it, do they have an flexible wine list, and can you make special requests? How is this list priced?
How will the caterer arrange the food on the buffet table or on plates? Can you see photos of previous work displays?
Can you speak to previous clients? (Get at least two references that had a similar number of guests and a similar menu style.)
Does the caterer also do wedding cakes? Can you use an outside baker if you desire? Is there a cake-cutting fee?
For more information about them and their services please visit their website The Wedding Knot
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