If you are currently in the middle of planning an event, you might be thinking of catering it. It is important that you are fully prepared for giving the caterers specific details about how much food you need, what the venue is like, and specifics about the type of food to be served. Unfortunately, there are some mistakes often made by people who might not know any better. Here are some mistakes to be sure you avoid when making catering arrangements.
Not Verifying What Cooking Equipment is Provided by the Venue
If you are not going to have the catered meal in your home, you need to find out exactly what the venue is going to offer. Some of them might mention they have a kitchen and dining area, but exactly what is offered in that kitchen? It might be an oven too small for the dishes your caterer has, or a refrigerator that is already half-full when you arrive. Get as many details as you can about what is offered, from the number of burners on the stove, to the size of the meal prep station. Make sure you take a look at the cooking area first and let the caterer know so they can plan the meal accordingly.
Failing to Ask About Food Allergies
When you invite people to the event, make sure you leave room on the RSVP cards where the guests can fill out what allergies they have. When they RSVP, you will be able to see if they follow a vegetarian or vegan diet, or if they are allergic to peanuts, wheat, or shellfish. It allows you to make foods that accommodate everyone coming to the event. It also helps your caterer plan a meal and keep certain items from contaminating other items. Someone allergic to shellfish should not be anywhere near it, so try not to place it on a buffet table near other foods.
Not Keeping Track of the Time
This is another common mistake made by people who are new to party planning. Make sure you and the caterer handling the event keep a close eye on the time and the schedule. Leave enough room for prep work, cooking, and serving the food and beverages. Don't assume all the prep work will be done before the catering team arrives. Stay in contact with the caterer to discuss how long is needed for preparing appetizers and main courses, and discuss what time cooking and serving will begin. This keeps you from having hungry guests who start filling up on drinks.
For more information, talk to a catering company like Essentially Gourmet.