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Hiring a caterer

My party planning continues. My son and his buddy really want to have Raising Cane’s cater their graduation party. We only have one in our whole metro area and it is a real hot spot for the college kids. We raising-canes-chicken-fingershad them┬ácater our older children’s’ grad parties so I know they are great! They will bring their deep fryers to my yard and deliver hot chicken fingers and fries right to my serving table. It sure saves me a lot of time and stress over what to make and how to store it. I like the idea of serving something different.

I’ve contacted them and have pricing. They’ve put my date on their catering calendar. I’ve set up a reminder to contact them again in May to confirm our date and menu. If you are thinking of hiring a caterer here is my checklist.

Caterer Checklist

  • What are their specialties? Do they have a menu you can review?
  • What serving equipment do they supply? (platters, chaffing dishes, serving spoons, tongs, plates, silverware)
  • Do they provide or rent any extras? (e.g.: centerpieces, candles, decorations, props).
  • How do they bill? Insist on a written estimate and breakdown of all costs. Ask to see a sample invoice so you know what to expect.
  • Is there a separate delivery charge?
  • What is their policy for quantities, can you return anything?
  • How much space do they need to set up and what do you need to provide for them?
  • Can they provide you with references?
  • How do they figure portion sizes?
  • How many people will staff your event?
  • Does their staff serve beverages?
  • If they are cooking onsite do they need power?
  • Does their staff clean up during and after the party? What is included in this clean-up service?

Many local restaurants provide catering as part of their services. Some options include picking up the food yourself, delivery (hot or cold), delivery with set-up, and delivery with full service staffing.

What are your suggestions?

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