Post # 1
So, we assumed incorrectly I guess! We are 4 months out and found out TODAY that our venue only allows cakes from licensed caterers. We were planning on FMIL making it!
Our contract does NOT state this so we are fighting it a bit. It states we can bring in our own cake, no word about licenses. Now I’m worried we will have to rush to find a cake and pay $800 we weren’t planning on!
Does your venue allow this? Is this a common rule??
Post # 3
@Jw1724: Its a food saftey thing. Your FMIL has not had the training professionals have had in food saftey and even though I am sure she is competent enough to make the cake safely its much safer for the venue to require you to use someone with a license for liability reasons. You could get a fake cake your FMIL could decorate styromfoan with just a small part on top from the baker to cut and sheet cake in the back if you want to save money!
Post # 4
Yeah, all our food and alcohol has to be supplied by a licensed supplier.
Post # 5
I think it’s pretty common, however, it was spelled out in our contract that we could only use a licensed baker. I think you should keep fighting it if it didn’t say that in your contract.
Post # 6
@Jw1724: our venue doesn’t allow it either. I wanted to have all home added desserts for a dessert bar but they wouldn’t allow us to bring in anything homemade
Post # 7
@excitedtobeMRSF: Good idea! Thank you
@MrsBeck: Here is the wording in our contract
“No outside food or beverage is permitted to enter the Waterville Valley Conference and Events Center Venue in any capacity. The only food allowed is the wedding cake/ dessert provide by the wedding couple. No food may be packaged and taken out of the facility. If outside desserts must be stored in refrigeration at our facility it will be at the discretion of the Chef and a waiver will be required.“
Post # 8
@Jw1724: It could vary from state to state, but I worked at a restaurant/wedding venue for about 5 years. We didn’t allow cakes or any food from unlicensed people. It was because the health departement could have shut us down if they found out we served food from someplace without a liscense. It wasn’t worth risking fines or being shut down so someone could bring in homemade cakes. If it wasn’t mentioned in the contract you can certainly ask about it, but if they are in a similar position they may not be willing to bend on this.
If you have to go with someone other than FMIL you can still try to keep it affordable. We did a small two layer cake for us to cut, and the had sheet-cakes to serve for everyone. We still got the cake cutting pictures we wanted, and the sheet cakes were way cheaper then a tiered cake to feed everyone.
Post # 9
@nikkialys: Thank you for the information! Such a bummer… although I understand the reasoning, I would think they should put that in the contract..
Post # 10
We chose a reception hall that specifically let us bring in our own food, so yes it does. However, it’s just a community hall, nothing fancy.
When I was searching for venues, many of the ones I looked at stated that they required licensed caterers.
Post # 11
@Jw1724: If they try and use a “food safety” reasoning, I think that’s BS.
Our venue offered cakes– BUT if we wanted to bring a cake from a different baker (there were no limitations on which ones though)– we just had to pay a per slice/fee.
Before this ever became an issue- we knew we wanted cake pops, not a traditional cake. So our venue offered to make them– at offered them at our tasting. They were really good, but they wanted $3.75/cake pop. Even though they were decent size- it meant we had to order a bunch of extras in case people took more than one– and THAT would have been really expensive–especially since we had kids at our wedding.
So instead, we talked to our vendor and they allowed us to being cake pops in (again- from anywhere! We could have made them at home!!) as long as they were wrapped in cellophane. So they were our informal favors, if you will. People ate them at the wedding though- and it wasn’t a big deal.
It’s likely that the only reason the venue forces you to get a cake from “approved vendors” is because they have some sort of contract with the venue.
I would fight for your right to bring in a cake– especially if it doesn’t say in the contract that you have to use certain vendors. Tell them that $800 simply isn’t in your budget and you woudln’t have signed the contract if you were aware of this.
I feel like vendors all think everyone has unlimited funds- of if you can afford “us” as your vendor, you must be able to afford XX, too. That’s a BS approach on thier part.
You want mini bubbles to put in kids gift bags? $2.99 for 18. You wnt the same tones- made by the same brand, in white instead of color– because they are intended + marketed for wedding use? $6.99 for 18. EVERYTHING wedding automatically goes up– no matter what it is because companies think all reason and logic in terms of $$ goes out the window– “oh f-ip!! We’ll pay $3/piece or bubble gum, it’s our wedding day!” LOL
Post # 12
According to our venue contract, and per state health department regulations, our cake had to be made in a licensed, professional kitchen. Although your venue was remiss in not having this stipulation in writing in its client contracts, it likely is nonetheless a state health department requirement that cannot be disregarded. In terms of selecting an affordable, licensed vendor, you may want to consider a grocery-store bakery or a bakery at a big-box retailer or club such as Walmart, Sam’s Club or BJ’s.
Post # 13
With 4 DD’s I have interviewed my fair share of caterers/venues. We found one venue willing to “look the other way” for a cake coming from an unlicensed source. I do not blame any business for sticking to their guns on this one though.
If you have a permit from the health dept to serve food you have to meed certain, very strict criteria so you don’t make your customers sick. Why would any business risk their license or a law suit by allowing food to be brought in from grandma’s kitchen? You have no idea what kind of safety concerns and sanitary concerns there could be.
I do think you should discuss with the venue that they need to put in the contract that the cake needs to come from a licensed facility. I think their wording is very misleading, however, I’m sure they don’t want to risk their license with the health dept over a cake.