(Closed) Using a restaurant as your caterer?

posted 11 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
1573 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I was planning on doing this, let us know how your wedding goes

Post # 4
944 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I am having an issue finding a caterer in general who can actually call/email back in less than a month. UGH I’ve looked into restaurants also but they seem to be more expensive, at least here, and charge $11.95 for a salad and two entree choices, but beverages, side dishes and staff are all extra, along with linens, china, glassware that you’d have to rent if you didn’t want to use their plastic utensils and plates that they provide. That would make their prices MORE expensive for me than going with a caterer that provides all that stuff—if they do, not all do. This is the part of the planning I’m really not liking. Good luck!

Post # 5
3979 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 2012

I’m doing this, but we’re having the reception in the restaurant. It’s such a gorgeous venue too & we can decorate it as we want. This way we get the servers, the bartender, the linens, the dishes, cutlery, etc at no extra cost. We just had to meet the minimum requirement to rent out the entire restaurant. 🙂

Post # 6
7172 posts
Busy Beekeeper

I researched this – but when you add up the rentals of the tables, linens, etc – it really doesn’t save much money.  I was able to find a restaurant that did catering on the side and their prices INCLUDED the tables/chairs/plates/cups, etc with setup at no additional cost.  It was a FIND.  I ultimately didn’t go that route, because the site I wanted to use was causing me too much angst (too many thing to potentially go wrong).

See if you can find any restaurant that advertises their catering services – if you can find one that also provides the typical rental stuff, you’ll likely save a bundle.

Post # 7
1347 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

We’re planning on this for our early afternoon reception. We’re not planning on having servers, but we’ll likely rent linens and dishware from a local rental company after scouting around for the best price. I’ve even heard of couples who buy inexpensive but nice plates, silverware, glasses, etc. from a place like IKEA (or collect from antique/thrift/vintage stores/online) and sell them afterwards on craigslist, because they found that was cheaper than renting.


Post # 8
1023 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

We plan on doing this, but we aren’t having table linens and are planning on doing the bambu or compostable dishware because our reception is out in the middle of nowhere, with nowhere to put dishes after dinner…so, yea. I think renting those things from a seperate place or buying cheap or mismatched is the way to go.

Post # 9
1892 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

We are using this restaurant that also offers a catering service. They sent us a list of basic pricing before we met with them. However, once we set the menu, our contract actually turned out to be less than what we estimated based on the information they had given us! Plus the food is amazing.

We initially thought we would have to find our own dishes and linens since it is a restaurant and found a rental company nearby that was rather inexpensive. However, when we had our tasting and asked about tableware they told us that they use the same rental company and their fee is only like a dollar more a setting compared to use ordering directly (but that includes all clean-up on their part so hey I am game for that if I do not have to do dishes before returning the rentals!). So this is a great option and I’m sure if you check in your area there are plently of rental companies around or maybe even the retaurant can send you in the right direction. Just ask!

Post # 10
1514 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

We used a resturuant for our caterer.  They provided the dishware and servers.  My wedding coordinator rented the linens.  They were wonderful!  Everyone RAVED about the food.

Post # 11
39 posts

We’re using a restaurant, too – but our reception will be in the event space next to the restaurant. Our per person plate includes tables, chairs, table settings, and linens, and a 20% service charge is added to the final bill. For us, this ended up being a much simpler, and much more economical option.

Post # 12
63 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

We are having a restaurant (BBQ, buffet style) cater our wedding. Fortunately the venue has some items:plates, silverware and linens. After much debate we went with disposable cups, which we are not too happy about, but we couldn’t really avoid it as we don’t have “servers”. They will clean up the dishes however, which is great. Overall we are really happy with our choice because the food is sooooo yummy and we are not frilly people so it will work well with the feel of our wedding. Furthermore,  it is tons cheaper than a “caterer” in the L.A. area. I think even if we had to rent linens it would be cheaper. You can by mismatched plates and silverware for dirt cheap at the thrift store. Good luck! 

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