Whether you are serving hors d’oeuvres, a three course meal or, a lavish dessert bar, food will be the one thing that can make, or break an event. Besides searching for a caterer who can produce a delicious meal, you also have to find a caterer who is professional, organized, properly staffed, and all within your budget. A proper caterer will be able to give you a realistic quote based on your budget.
I recently spoke to Dominic Ellis, owner of Gusto Catering in Waterloo, and he had a few things to say about meeting, and selecting a caterer:
Dominic goes through three phases when meeting a client, and he believes these phases are very important in developing a strong working relationship. He says it is essential to always be straightforward and honest with the client.
1. Have an open dialogue with the caterer – start with a phone call, but book a meeting so you can meet the caterer face-to-face.
2. Meet with the caterer and have a brainstorming session. It is important that the caterer is able to develop a unique menu for you personally, and provide you with a detailed quote.
3. Inquire about a tasting – a professional caterer will want you to taste their food, to ensure that you are happy with the service they can provide!
Dominic says that through these phases he is able to get to know his clients on a personal level – what type of meal they are interested in, what style of food they prefer, etc. Dominic and the team at Gusto Catering try to use local and seasonal ingredients when possible to aid in creating a unique dish for each unique client. They strive to create the perfect menu so they can take stress and anxiety away from the client, so the planning of the event is enjoyable.
I also chatted with Dominic about food trends for 2013, and there are some interesting things happening in the world of food! This year, caterers are getting creative with starches – instead of having a side of mashed potatoes, we are seeing substitutes such as risotto, gnocchi, and potato pancakes. In addition, hosts are offering a pasta course, after the salad course, and before the main course.
We are also seeing many events incorporating tapas style food, and having more courses, but smaller portions. Last but not least, the ever favourable poutine is dominating late night buffets at weddings – delicious!
So when you’re selecting a caterer for an upcoming event, try and develop a strong working relationship with them, to make the planning a little easier on yourself. Moreover, when creating your menu, think outside the box!
If you would like to learn more about Gusto Catering, feel free to visit their website!