While your guests are technically there to witness the ceremony and see the joining of two lives in love forevermore, everyone knows they’re really looking forward to the food. A good caterer brings stunning presentation and delicious food to your reception, keeping spirits high and the mood jovial as long as it needs to be. Here are some tips to find the caterer you need for the wedding of your dreams.

Be Certain About Availability

If the caterer isn’t around for your target date, you need to know right off the bat so you don’t waste your time or theirs. First thing you should do with any caterer is ensure their availability on your wedding date, including verifying payment schedules, menu choice deadlines, and any other important dates. If you’re hosting a significant party, aim to have your caterer all tied up about nine months before the wedding date. It might seem like a long time, but the extra time helps ensure a worry-free and flawless execution.

Check With The Venue

Some venues have restrictions on caterers you can use, or they may have a list of preferred vendors that you can be sure are at least familiar with the location. Sometimes there are also special rates you can get on catering services if you’re booking at a specific venue. Once you have your location chosen, ask if they have preferred suppliers that might include a caterer you can get a great deal on.

Be Sure of the Budget

Caterers all have different ideas about what is and isn’t included in a stated price. Some quotes might be all-inclusive, covering everything related to providing and serving food at the venue. Others might only be quoting you the food price, expecting you to either provide or pay for tableware, linen, staff, or other associated costs. Be absolutely sure what your quote includes and does not include to avoid surprising bills when the date rolls around.

Check Taste – And Appearance!

Tasting sessions are common once you narrow it down to a few catering options. While it’s vital that you be happy with the menu and the flavor of the food you serve to your guests, also ask for pictures of spreads at weddings the caterer has handled before. You want to be certain the appearance of the food is up to your standards, as well as the taste.

Expect Flexibility

A wedding is a big event, and the caterer needs to be receptive to your plan and vision for the day. While all experienced caterers will have a basic guideline as to how to handle your event, they should also be receptive to your expectations and plans for the day and flexible enough to acquiesce to them. If the caterer you’re speaking to seems to have a plan in mind that they don’t want to deviate from, look elsewhere.