Known for its grand hospitality and lavish celebrations, Indian weddings stand true to the famous Indian adage “Atithi Devo Bhav”. Treating our guests as gods, they are a roller-coaster of experiences of fun, laughter, and lip-smacking food.
Weddings and food are inseparable. Some tips from WedAbout to help you take the right wedding catering decisions:
It is important to allocate a budget for serving the food to your guests within your limits. You need to decide whether to entrust the caterer with the entire package of drinks, food, snacks or just stick to plain grub. Money talks no doubt, but it is the caterer and the catering teams’ skill and vision, to deliver that makes it all come together.
Photo credit@Free stock photos
Before signing the agreement contract, please ensure that the wedding caterer possesses the relevant licenses. This also means that the caterer should comply with the health authorities’ standards. The licenses a caterer must obtain are FSSAI Food Business License by the Food Safety Standard Authority of India, Liquor License to serve drinks by the state excise department and Shops and Establishment License, to confirm where the caterer operates from.
It is imperative to zero-in on how the food will be prepared and served to the invitees. Mr. Mayank Tandon, Director, and CEO, Grillworks Hospitality mentions, “Food is partially cooked off-site. To maintain the freshness it is stored and refrigerated at a healthful temperature and is finished on-site. The final garnishing, butter infusion and cream infusions are done at the venue.”
A live-counter at the weddings is the latest trend. From stir fried vegetables, pasta, sizzlers, roomali and tandoori rotis, jalebis, Sancha ice-creams, everything is made right in front of your eyes and are a gastronomical delight.
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‘Your wish is my command’, says the Chef. They ensure that the menu is diverse in terms of the offerings. The caterer works with specialized chefs to bring in varied flavors from various cuisines including Japanese, Oriental, Italian, Indian, Mughlai and much more. With destination and theme weddings gaining popularity, Chefs have to be equipped to prepare exotic dishes to suit the tastes and preferences of the guests. “Caterers appoint Chefs based on their experience, knowledge, skills and Industry references. They are usually given a menu and are asked to prepare a dish, basis which the selection is made”, adds Mayank.
“Personally, I prefer cooks who are knowledgeable and can explain and talk to the guests from behind the counter and entice them to try various dishes and make recommendations. This not only solidifies their position as a caterer but also enhances the overall experience of the function”, says Mr. Kushagra Nagrath, President at Zephyr Hospitality Pvt. Ltd and specialize in niche and boutique catering.
A caterer with a sound experience of managing weddings must be chosen. References from friends, family, and people who are satisfied with the catering experience should be taken into account. Going through the Facebook, Twitter, Instagram pages, and their website will also give a fair idea about the reputation. A good caterer is the one who takes care of services that are apart from food which require special attention like table arrangements, food arrangements etc. to go with the entire wedding décor. The WedAbout app provides for all of the above to make it easier to find the right caterer for your wedding.
“Clients want to know what is the caterer’s standing, his credentials, his client list, etc. There are also multiple caterers that can be chosen for the same function. A growing trend is also to go beyond the tried and tested cuisines — go more exotic, international and also get foreign chefs in”, specifies Kushagra.
A good caterer keeps in mind the preferences and tastes of the guests and suggests various options in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes.
A proficient caterer can customize the offerings basis the demands of the customers. A bouquet of diverse cuisines from Italian to Mughlai and International cuisines like Moroccan and Arabic is a part of options proposed by the experts. The catering package can be designed basis the budget and preferences of the customers. “Weddings are like food festivals. There are a plethora of options to choose from. The caterers have tie-ups with big brands like Pind Balluchi, Giani’s, Naturals, Bitto Tikki Wala, Dominos and Café Coffee Day to name a few and bring them under one roof for client’s convenience.” Says Mayank.
The Caterer’s staff should be professional, experienced, enthusiastic and sensitive to the food preferences of the guests. Make sure the catering staff has the knowledge and expertise to prepare, the selected cuisines by you. They must also be aware of any restrictions that need to be taken care of while cooking for the guests.
You want your guests to go happy and satisfied from your wedding. To make sure this happens, the caterer must ensure that the serving staff is courteous, experienced and good at their job. They should be able to engage with guests when asked about the food they are serving. Caterers make it a point to invest in proper training of the staff and contractors who in turn will be able to provide polished and quality staff.
“The selection of the service staff is usually done from catering colleges and the caterer only has about 15% of the overall catering staff numbers required.” specifies, Mayank
The presentation is the buzzword today. Each cuisine counter has a different setup and lighting. The décor, props, and uniform of the chef at the cuisine counter could match with the food being served.
The creativity of the caterer can be gauged by how he sets up the food counters. Dishes are named in sync with the theme of the wedding. A Bollywood themed event might have some dishes named after actors. Instead of the mundane and routine style, the food is now offered in a more fun style – chaat papri served in martini glasses, aalo chaat served in soup spoons, gulab jamuns in cocktail glasses.
A good caterer takes the entire stress by his impeccable service and amazing food. It’s time you go book one for your wedding!
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