Catering Checklist

Caterers, like all good wedding services, book months in advance.  This should be one of the priorities in your planning process, to interview, select and contract with your favorite at least 6 to 8 months before your wedding. 
Below is a helpful checklist to use during the planning process and to use as a final list as preparations are being made onsite for your reception.
 
Remember that the hour of your wedding will dictate your menu. Evening weddings are traditionally more expensive, as guests are normally served dinner.  Afternoon weddings held after a normal lunch time period can provide you savings by serving or finger foods and cake. One major misconception made by couples is that they can save money by serving hors d’oeuvres rather than a meal.
 
Remember that these always are much more labor intensive in preparation, costing you in the end more than a large buffet style dinner… so be sure and weigh your options!

 

Provide your prospective caterer with:

1) Your Wedding date
2) Wedding time
3) Reception location
4) Reception time
5) Number of guests
6) Budget

In addition to your wedding, other potential catering needs may
be:

1) Engagement party
2) Rehearsal dinner
3) Bachelor/bachelorette party
4) Reception
5) Showers

Menu/Service Style – Decide what style of food service will
best suit your budget:

1) Hors d’oeuvres
2) Buffet style
3) Full-service dinner
4) Cake & beverages

Once you’ve selected the service style, your caterer will help you
select menu items.


Beverages:

Decide what type of beverages will be served.

___ Coffee/tea
___ Non-alcohol punch
___ Punch w/alcohol
___ Champagne/wine
___ Beer
___ Hard liquor
     ___ Hosted Bar  ___ No-Host Bar
 
Be sure to check with the facility where the reception will be
held whether alcohol is allowed and what restrictions may apply.

Miscellaneous:

Once you’ve selected the style and menu, your caterer will help
you select serving items. You’ll need to decide if you want:

___ Paper plates
___ China
___ Plastic utensils
___ Flatware
___ Plastic glasses
___ Glass
___ Disposable table coverings &
      napkins
___ Linen table cloths & napkins


Your caterer can also make suggestions
about champagne fountains, festive table displays, candles and other
reception decorations. With the help of a competent caterer you can
relax and enjoy the best party of your life!