Catering & Beverage Services
Whether the event you are planning for your corporate group is formal or casual, pairing up with the right caterer makes all the difference in the flavor of your occasion.

Predominately there are three food service styles used by caterers in hosting a group dining event: cocktail, buffet and seated meals. Certainly each style invites a distinct pace, accommodation and ambiance. So, it is essential for you to consider what you hope to accomplish with the group your caterer will be serving.

For example, a gala or fundraiser may inspire you to add a dash of pizzazz to your corporate catering event such as a majestic ice sculpture of your company logo, succulent fresh shrimp, mouthwatering roast beef and decadent chocolate desserts. Or perhaps your group prefers something more casual, like an outdoor barbeque complete with brown sugar red beans, smoking brisket and apple pie. No matter what your preference, your caterer can combine your food and beverage options with an ambiance that suits any appetite and budget, creating a wonderful dining experience.

If you are unfamiliar with how to hire a caterer or just need a refresher course, listed below are 15 helpful hints to consider when choosing a catering company to handle your important corporate dining event.

1. Have you tasted the caterer’s food or received recommendations?
2. What person from the catering company will actually be available at your event?
3. Does the caterer have a permit?
4. Does the caterer have a commercial kitchen?
5. Discuss timing issues with your caterer such as set up and tear down.
6. If there is a speaker at your corporate dinner, during what course will he speak? 7. Discuss different serving styles from informal to formal, sit-down dinner or buffet, food stations, etc.
8. When discussing the menu, consider these issues: type of food, hot or cold, variety of menu, number of courses, theme-related foods and don’t forget special dietary requirements available for guests.
9. When reviewing beverages with your caterer, decide on a host or no-host bar or full, premium or well bar.
10. Be sure to also check on alcohol beverage licensing/permits with your caterer and any restrictions at the facility where you are hosting your get-together.
11. Discuss the number of catering staff to handle your event and their attire.
12. Consider location choices from dining or meeting rooms to patios or foyers.
13. Talk about room/table arrangements from round to rectangular tables, head tables, accommodations for extra guests and room traffic flow.
14. Discuss equipment considerations such as linens, flowers, balloons, china, crystal and utensils as well as special equipment.
15. Finally, determine when a final head count is due to the caterer and length of service.

These 15 steps should get you off to a good start and help to marshal exactly what you want for your corporate dining affair. Guests will savor cuisine that delights them with the steady assurance of tradition, seasoned with the evolving tastes of trendy accents.

Just remember that every catering affair begins with an experienced consultant who tailors a menu and coordinates the food, décor and presentation to best meet your needs and deliver a spectacular event.