Post # 1
Does anyone have any experience with using chain restaurants as off-site caterers?
I’m not really talking Boston Market or Moe’s (although that could be a yummy mexican after-party). I mean… Cheesecake Factory. Macaroni Grill. Bertuccis. I sometimes see ads for their catering menus but I get the feeling it’s more boxes lunches for corporate events.
Any suggestions? What kind of pricing does this turn out to be? (I’m asking for actual dollar amounts if you have them!) I’m hoping for a passed cocktail hour and a buffet dinner. Not too fancy… outdoors.
Does the catering come with any service or set up? Is this not really the way to go for a budget reception? THANKS!!!
Post # 3
I think the best thing for you to do is figure out what restaurants you want to look at and then ask them. Every chain restaurant has a website and I’m sure you could get contact information for the actual location nearest to you. Good luck!
Post # 4
Most restaurant do have catering menu. Just go in and ask them. I’ve seen them macaroni grill and cheesecake factory ones.
Post # 5
I went a wedding last year, and the couple had Fazoli’s cater. It was fan-freakin-tastic. There were 2 types of salad, pastas, some sort of chicken (picatta maybe?) and breadsticks. It was delicious.
I later talked to the bride, who was so proud that they had only spent like $7-$8 per person.
–And I’d be psyched if you had Moe’s. I love their burritos. They just closed the location here in town 🙁
Post # 6
Macaroni Grill will do set up, with utensils and everything for catering services. But I think it comes in foil containers. Price wise it is probably a lot cheaper than traditional on site catering. When I worked for Brinker (the old parent company of Macaroni Grill), it was about $50 for a catering size portion of entrees (8-10 people I think). I believe it came to roughly $12 per person for a full buffet meal, which isn’t actually bad considering our catered wedding was about double that per person. The pricing usually doesn’t include beverages and they can usually only do teas/lemonade in styrofoam cups from restaurants.
Post # 7
I looked into a few of them. I was considering using fazoli’s as well as Boston Market. Carrabbas also does catering. Yum! Eventually we went with a caterer that is part of a local restaurant/pub. Their catering service is kind of new, so the pricing is great. The owner came out and met us at our tasting and even brought us more drinks. They are a really great group to work with.
So I would suggest checking some locally based restaurants too! Just google around and see what you can find 🙂
Post # 8
Thanks, guys! I’m really considering a grocery store for catering at this point. Whole Foods. Or maybe King’s since they have event planners with wait staff and rental contacts. We’ll see!
Post # 9
I think we are going to do Famous Dave’s BBQ, it includes 2 people to set up, serve and clean up. The cost is $16 per person with 3 meat choices, 2 sides, salad and cornbread muffins and includes utensils, plates and napkins. We are going in and meeting the catering manager in a few weeks to do a “tasting” of all their menu items.