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With a variety of options available it is possible to find a style of catering that will suit your theme or ‘couple personality’, a caterer will make your vision real.

A huge portion of your wedding budget will go towards feeding your guests, so it’s essential that you get it right. You don’t want your guests, or yourselves, to go hungry, as it is generally a long day for everyone. Plus with alcohol consumption sometimes going on for long periods of time, food can either make or break your experience. There are a few options for catering and your choice will depend on your budget and wedding theme. We chat with Stefano and Alex, from Fiasco Catering to get their advice for finding a good wedding caterer.

Traditionally around 40-50% of any wedding budget will go on the reception and the majority of that spend is the catering. “Your wedding day is such a long day for all involved. Making sure you have enough food for people is critical”, says Stefano, Head Chef and owner of Fiasco Catering. “You don’t want people getting hungry or feeling sick from too much alcohol and no food either”, adds Alex, Stefano’s mother-in-law and marketing manager. Stefano goes on to say “Food is such an important part of the celebration. It is remembered by most people whether it is good or bad, so why not make it special?” Foodies out there will raise their glasses in agreement. Of course, if food just isn’t that important to you, then by all means, cut back here and spend your money on the entertainment or the photography. Just make sure there is enough of what you choose or you may soon find that people are hungry and organising a trip to the closest takeaway shop.

There are several things to remember when booking a caterer but first and foremost, you need to have an idea of what you want and need. “Go to them with at least an idea of your guest numbers and style of wedding. They can then make suggestions based on that information and can customise your menu to suit”, says Alex. “There also needs to be a certain level of trust. Meeting up with your caterer for an initial conversation is a great way to see if you like them and if you can trust that they will do the job you expect”, says Stefano. Both Alex and Stefano agree that this basis of trust and rapport is crucial in delivering a quality menu that will leave your guests happy and sated.

There are many catering options out there and a menu can be created to suit any budget. Cocktail parties will see various canapés and sometimes, small plates with small portions served to your guests but you need to make sure people eat enough. Buffet service is perfect for large weddings and often has more than enough food, provided people don’t take more than their share. Sit-down meals are a great way of spoiling everyone with a more formal affair and often consist of a minimum of two courses being entrée and main. Dessert can be either a third course or the cake can be sliced and used instead. “A good caterer will sit down with you and workout which style of service is most suitable for you and for your budget” Stefano says.

“The key to choosing your menu is to stay true to yourselves”, says Alex, “and a good caterer will want to create a menu that does exactly that”. Serve what you like. If you like beer instead of wine, then provide a selection of nice beers. If you are both vegetarian, then why not have a vegetarian feast? Your guests will love the break from the normal chicken and beef found at most weddings. Caterers can tend to have their own style and tell you what they think you should provide, but a good caterer will also find out what you both like and help make your wedding unique.

 

Stefano’s tips for finding a good caterer

Meet first to see if you like them

Taste everything!

Ensure your quote is for exactly what you want and need

Make sure they provide freshly cooked food at your venue, not transport precooked food

Make sure they can provide adequate staff and include them in the price

Ask them if they have their NSW Liquor Licence

 

Qualities of a good caterer

Trustworthy and easy to get along with

Communicates well and meets with you several times

Asks you all about your theme, guest list, likes and dislikes

Caters for any dietary requirements and allergies

Flexibility and ability to meet your needs and wants

Great menus and even custom menus

Ability to help you schedule the food service into your day

Good quality produce

Comprehensive quotes for exactly what you need and want

Attractive packages and pricing

Full tastings of the entire menu

NSW Liquor Licence if they are providing and serving alcohol

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