Post # 1
I have been struggling with choosing our caterer for quite some time now, and thought I would enlist the help of you lovlies. Ok so here is the scoop:
Caterer #1 –I was a guest at a wedding about 4 years ago and had the most amazing food! My Fiance and I still talk about the prime rib and risotto from the meal! Needless to say we met with them and the food exceeded my expectations, it was BETTER than I remembered! We kept saying it tasted better than most restaurants in SF! As you have probably guessed, it was more than we wanted to spend at the top of our price range. If we choose this caterer we will not have any wiggle room and will most likely go over our budget.
Caterer #2– We met with them just a couple of weeks ago. We met directly with the chef/owner, and he was very nice and accommodating. He has tons of experience and is apparently award-winning. I really liked his entrees, but his appetizers were not very good at all. One was over-seasoned and dry. The other was a pork with a jam that was way too sweet and over-powering. We were able to try two salads also, and they both had way too much pepper. I wanted to be fair and give them the benefit of the doubt, and at home tried to find alternatives on the menu that might work better. But I had no luck. In fact, both my Fiance and I had trouble finding items on his appetizer /salad menu that we would actually want to serve. The chef did mention that they are in the process of revamping their menu, and there will be other appetizers available for us to choose from.Not sure if we should take the gamble…
Here is the delimna: I love the first one, and do not have any doubts, but the price is pretty steep. The second one is doable and definitely more affordable about 2, 000 less! But— I am not confident in the food.
Who would you pick?
PS my Fiance wants #2 based on price alone, but of course I may be too focused on this whole wedding thing, and do not want to settle. What would you do? Thanks !!!
Post # 3
- Wedding: August 2018 - Oakland Manor
Is there time (or will ) left to find another caterer? I began with several in mind and ended up going with a caterer I didn’t originally consider. Checking wedding wire and other review sites really helped me narrow it down since I hadn’t really attended many weddings in my area.
Post # 4
I don’t think it’s a good idea serve food you don’t like just because it’s cheaper. Have you tried negotiating with caterer #1 on cost? Are there other menu items that may be less expensive but equally tasty (chicken instead of prime rib, cheese platter instead of jumbo prawns)? What if you chose fewer passed appetizers (typically more $$ b/c they require additional servers) and had a larger table of stationary appetizers? I suggest telling the first caterer that you would really like to chose their team, but your budget won’t allow it. Ask him to make suggestions to pare down the menu or you will have to look elsewhere. Ditto on the suggestion to find a third caterer to compare prices. Maybe there’s a middle of the road you and you Fiance will both be happy with.
Post # 5
Oh, this is tough. It sounds like the problems with caterer number 2 might be things you could work with, though, if he’s willing to negotiate and give you an additional tasting right before the wedding of the food you ordered.
You said he was kind and accommodating, so would you be comfortable sitting down with him and telling him that while you liked his food, there were a few small things you’d like to tweak for your event? You could mention that you’d rather allow guests to pepper their own salads to taste, and ask that a server follow the salad service with a pepper mill to each table. In terms of the jam, could you ask that it be used sparingly or on the side? You could request your modifications (or even just give your honest feedback), and then ask to do another tasting to your specs. If the food still doesn’t work for you, find someone else.
I’m personally from the "don’t go overbudget" school of thought. It’s just one day, and while you do want to have incredible food that you’ll love, it’s not worth it to me to break the bank for it. If it’s worth it to you, that’s great. Go for it. 🙂
Post # 6
Oh thanks Ladies! It is so nice just to get feedback from others who are also planning a wedding. I have negotiated with the first caterer and they are helpful, but still a little expensive. I did speak with the second caterer and he seemed open to doing some appetizers that were off his menu and more custom, but I still have my doubts about taste. when we did our tasting I tried items that I would generally like, and both were not even close, so I am worried to take the gamble since apps are my favorite part. I will just need to think about this more….