5 Tips for Choosing a Wedding Caterer for a Memorable Day

This is part II of our Catering Search and Selection Blogs. If you missed part I, check it out here – 6 Tips Before Stating your Catering Search to Ease Your Mind.

Once you’ve completed your pre-search checklist, here are some tips for moving forward and selecting your caterer for your big day.

Begin the Catering Search Early

Most wedding caterers are booked far in advance – you will need to reach out to caterers starting at least 2-3 months after getting engaged to ensure your first choice will be available.

Start looking for your caterer as soon as you have a date and venue. It is never too early to secure your caterer, especially if it is during peak season.

Look into Full-Service Catering Vendors

Typically, full-service catering includes your choice of menu, food prepared by professional chefs, dining expertly set up, food service throughout the function, and clean up taken care of at the end.

Sometimes this is taken a step further. Some companies emphasize the ‘full’ in full-service by offering to take care of some decisions needed to ensure they are cohesive across the board. This can include floral arrangements that may coordinate with edible arrangements, or bar service that complements the food.

This saves you time, money, and stress, and helps to ensure that your catering will match or enhance your wedding vision.

Set Up Initial Meetings with Caterers & Know What to Ask

One of the best ways to determine if a caterer is the right fit for your wedding is to set up calls where you can speak to them and get the information you need.

Here are some questions you may want to ask:

  • Are you available on our wedding date? Do you have any other events that day?
  • Do you offer Bar Services?
  • Can I see photos of your previous work?
  • Have you catered at this venue before?
  • Have you ever done a theme like mine? Do you have any pictures?
  • Do you offer food tastings?
  • Where is your food sourced from?
  • Can we customize our menu?
  • What would you need to execute our vision properly?

Set Clear Expectations

During the meeting, be sure to set clear expectations for yourself and all potential caterers that communicate exactly what you have in mind for your vision, preferences, and priorities. Be consistent with your ideas and ensure they are not only heard, but listened to. Pinterest Boards are always fun to see too. 😉

Set Up Tastings with Top Catering Options

After your initial meeting, scheduling tastings with your top caterer options is the best way to see if they can create something delicious that harmonizes with your vision. Though these are not always possible, you can always ask for images or references from past clients. Ask for all you need to decide if they would be able to bring your vision to life.

J&J is here to help with your Wedding

Wherever you are in your wedding planning process, consider renting from J&J Tent and Party Rentals. Also, be sure to check out our preferred caterers on our Friends of J&J page.

No matter the size of the venue, budget, or individual needs, J&J is here to help. Contact us today at (919) 977-3691.

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