Where, when and who shall I speak to first! It all seems overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be, I promise.
Once you have set the date, start looking for a venue. You may want a stately home, monastery, marquee, palm house, an iconic venue or, you just don’t know?
There is plenty of help out there….internet or word of mouth.
Once you have chosen the venue, the fun.
The first step is to contact the caterer or caterers.
So many questions to ask, so take your time.
Give the caterer an idea of what you are looking for, in terms of style of food, how many guests you are inviting and the date of your wedding and where.
Once you have an idea of how they operate, request a meeting.
Caterers should make it easy for you, by inviting you for a complimentary tasting and a run through of the day.
If you need to speak to chef before your visit for inspiration, just enquire.
Tasting day, you will have given your choices in advance, that you both wish to taste (normally this is a full meal, so don’t eat beforehand).
Some caterers have a tasting/theming room. This is an added bonus. You can see styles of linen, crockery, chairs and other options too.
Believe me, with all of these options your visit can take 3 hours.
Drinks on arrival / Canapes….how many per guest.
Wedding breakfast….menu choices and dietary requirements.
Table wines….fine or house wine options and also soft drinks.
Toast drink…. from Champagne to prosecco
Bar….what the options are
Evening nibbles….maybe bacon barms, fish n chip cones or a hog roast.
Table theming…. what is included in menu price or the options.
Order of the day….timings for the set up and the reception.
Staffing….are they trained in house, dress and standards
Suppliers meals….photographer and entertainers
Food regulations….if they are audited to a recognised standard.
Pictures….visual lay outs of events they have completed
Payment ….terms and conditions
Recommendations….nothing speaks higher!
Commitment….if they will personally be looking after you.
Don’t worry if you cannot remember all of these questions, because a good caterer will talk you through this, before you have even thought of it.
If you are happy, sign the contract to secure their services. Then you can sit back for a while knowing you are in safe hands and don’t forget no matter how unimportant, you may think a question is. Ask, because nothing is more important than you!
Words by Chapman Holmes