If you’re hosting a corporate event in Toronto, one of the easiest ways to win over your guests is through their appetites. In order to do that, you have to hire a caterer you can trust with a spectacular menu that will please everyone’s taste buds. To help you achieve that, here are our tips to help you score the best caterer for your next company party.
Where To Begin
Before you go on the hunt for a caterer, make sure you’ve defined the scope of the event. Are you looking for a caterer for a sit-down dinner, or a caterer to provide appetizers for an engaging cocktail hour or networking event? This will dictate the type of caterer you want to look for as certain companies specialize in certain types of event catering.
Secondly, define your budget. Apart from the venue, food and beverages are probably going to be some of the most costly expenses. Know where you stand so you know how to approach caterers. Based on your budget, they can come up with set menus for you to look over and approve.
Set Clear Expectations
Every corporate event is different, which means the scale of each event will be unique as well. Be upfront with your potential caterers and outline what your expectations are and the services you’re looking for. Sending expectations out as early as possible can help you weed out potential caterers that might not be a good fit and what you’re looking for.
Check And Taste The Menu
You know your guests best, so make sure you pick out a menu that they’ll love. Be sure to have a diverse selection of food, especially for those who may have dietary restrictions. Be sure to include vegetarian and gluten-free options so everyone can take part in the culinary affair.
Once you’re done picking out a menu, make sure you get a chance to taste it! Menu tastings are typically offered to those who are hosting large scale events, and may not be an option for smaller-scale ones, but it’s still worth asking about. In each case, see if caterers have any menu samples available for you to try. Menu tastings can help you dictate what adjustments need to be made before event day or help you decide whether or not you should hire that caterer or not. Depending on the company, tastings may come at an additional cost. While you may be tempted to risk it and save the extra cash, it’s always better to be safe than sorry and try the food ahead of time.
Check The Fine Print
Phew, you’ve nailed down a caterer! You’re probably very relieved to get such a major event task crossed out. But now it’s all about the contract, which you really want to take a good look at before signing off. Contracts will specify the food the caterer will be serving as well as any specialty items that you’ve asked for and additional services. Contracts will also outline details around your event like date, arrival times and leaving times to ensure you know exactly when to expect them during show day. If this is a full service caterer, they may also include details surrounding table linens, table accessories and number of servers hired for the event.
Before you sign, don’t forget to take a look at cancellation policies and penalties. These are important to have in mind in for the off chance you need to cancel services before event day.
Check In With Your Venue’s Preferred Caterers
Most venues that you work with will have preferred caterers that they work with directly. Depending on the event you’re holding, checking out these options might be a good place to start especially as you might be able to strike special deals by going with them. The added benefit is that since they’re coming through your venue, the two probably have a spectacular working relationship when it comes to executing events, so you can rest assured that things will go smoothly as possible.
The Love Child Social, one of the top venues for corporate events in Toronto, only works with the best venders to make sure your event is well catered. Their go-tos include Calii Love, The Food Dudes, Peter and Paul’s Event Catering and Daniel et Daniel. Thinking of hosting a corporate event in the near future? Contact the team at Love Child Social to see how they can bring your event concept to life within their versatile space. From product launches, corporate panels and networking events — they’ve truly done it all and look forward to the opportunity to host your event too.