Do You Know Which Questions to Ask Your Caterer?

Do you know the right questions to ask when interviewing caterers? We do! And not only did we provide you with a list of questions, but also OUR answers. Keep reading to find out more about us.

The Basics

How many weddings do you do per year, and how long have you been in business?
Spice Catering has been in business for 8 years now. With each passing year, we cater more and more weddings.

Are you licensed by the state of Connecticut? Are you licensed to serve alcohol?
Yes and yes. We have a full liquor license and can bring the bar to any event!

Will you provide a banquet manager to coordinate the meal service or an on-site coordinator who will run the entire event?
Yes, all of our weddings and events include an on-site coordinator to make sure that your day is flawless.

Can you assist with other aspects of the wedding like selecting other vendors, event design (e.g. specialty lighting, elaborate décor, theme events, etc.)?
Absolutely. Our wedding planner can assist in any aspect of your wedding planning.
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Food & Presentation

Do you specialize in certain cuisines?
Our chef has experience in a wide variety of cuisines and we can customize a menu just for your event.

Do we have to work off a preset menu or can you create a custom menu for our event? If I have a special dish I’d like served, would you accommodate that?
We have a few basic menus that you can choose from, however, this is by no means the extent of our culinary abilities. In fact, we highly recommend creating a custom menu for your event, especially a wedding. If there is a dish that is special to you, we’d love to hear about it!

Do you offer event packages or is everything à la carte? What exactly do your packages include?
When creating a proposal, we lay everything out for you line by line. Some of this includes hors d’oeuvres, entrees, staff, rentals and alcohol. We create a “package” just for you.

Do you use all fresh produce, meat, fish, etc.? Can you source organic or sustainably farmed ingredients?
We often work with local farms to incorporate their fresh ingredients into our dishes. We have used mushrooms from Chatfield Hollow Farm in Killingworth, produce from Lyman Farms in Middlefield and lamb from Sepe Farm in Sandy Hook, just to name a few.
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Can you accommodate dietary restrictions, such as kosher, vegan, etc.?
Yes, we have accommodated many dietary restrictions before, including but not limited to vegan, gluten free, and vegetarian.

What décor do you provide for appetizer stations or buffet tables?
We provide linen and overlays for the bar and buffet tables, along with decor that is suitable for your theme and event (i.e.: beach decor, candles, holiday decor, etc.).

Do you offer package upgrades such as chocolate fountains, ice sculptures, espresso machines or specialty displays?
Absolutely. If you can think of it, we can provide it! Or, we may even suggest other types of specialty displays or additions if we feel it goes well with your event.

Can you do theme menus (e.g. barbecue, luau, etc.)? Would you also provide the décor?
Yes, we can. We’ve done many themed events before and you can see some photos on our Facebook page and website

What’s the difference in cost between passed appetizers and appetizer stations? What’s the price difference between a buffet and a sit-down meal?
Pricing varies based on many factors, including guest count, length of event and food choices. We’d be happy to discuss this on a phone consultation or in person over a cup of coffee or glass of wine!
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Do you do wedding cakes? If so, is this included in the per-person meal price or is it extra?
We do not make wedding cakes on-site, but we can work with one of our preferred bakeries to create the perfect one for you.
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If I decide not to serve cake, can you provide a dessert display instead?
Of course. We have created ice cream sundae bars, pie buffets and even passed desserts. We have even gotten more creative with a flaming fried doughnut station or other interactive dessert stations.
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If we use an outside cake designer, do you charge a cake-cutting fee?
No, our Chef is happy to cut and plate your cake.

Do you handle rental equipment such as tables, chairs, etc.?
Yes, as a full service event planning company, we take the guessing out of how many tables, chairs, plates, glassware, etc. that you will need for your event and will include all of this in our proposal, as well as take care of delivery, setup and pickup.

What types of linens, glassware, plates and flatware do you provide?
We have a variety from which to choose.

Can you provide presentation upgrades such as chair covers, lounge furniture, Chiavari chairs, etc.? What would be the additional fees?
Yes, we can. That would be covered under the rental pricing and would vary based on your needs and style


Do you provide alcoholic beverages and bartenders? Can you accommodate specialty cocktails?
Yes, we have a full liquor license and will provide all alcohol, mixers, garnishes, water and other non-alcoholic beverages. We love creating speciality cocktails!

What brands of alcohol will be served?
We use all Premium liquors and beer, including local craft beers.
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How do you charge for alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages? Per consumption or per person?
We charge a per person fee for our drink packages. Non-alcoholic beverages are included in this price (which is dependent on if you choose just beer and wine or full bar, and also the length of the event). Guests under 21 years old are $5 per person for unlimited non-alcoholic beverages for the duration of the event.

Is the champagne toast after the ceremony included in your meal packages or is it extra?
This would be offered as an additional item. Pricing depends on champagne brand chosen.

How long will alcohol be served?
A maximum of 5 hours.

Is coffee and tea service included with the per-person meal charge?
Yes, we include regular and decaf coffees, as well as a variety of herbal teas.

Business Matters

What is the ratio of servers to guests?
This is dependent upon the menu and style of service.

How will the servers be dressed?
For formal events such as weddings, they wear black pants, black shirts and black shoes. For more casual events, they wear khaki pants in the summer with our red Spice Catering Group shirts.

How is your pricing broken down?
We create a per person price for hors d’oeuvres, entrees, and bar. Then there is a separate flat rate for rentals and a flat rate for staff. We do not include gratuity. 

How much time do you require for setting up and breaking down my event, and are there extra fees for this?
We typically arrive 2 hours prior to a wedding and less for other events. It depends on the menu and setup required. The cost is included in the staff price.

If my event runs longer than contracted, what are your overtime fees?
We would charge our normal hourly rate per staff member.

What is the last date by which I can give you a final guaranteed guest count?
We need all final counts and meal choices, if applicable, 7 business days prior to your event.

What is your payment policy? Do you accept credit cards?
We require a deposit to secure your date. This can be paid with a credit card (Visa or MasterCard), check or cash.

How much of a deposit is required to hold my date? When is the final payment due?
We require a 25-50% non-refundable deposit, depending on the amount of time between booking and the event date. Final payment is due no later than 7 business days prior to any event.

Are there any fees that won’t be included in the proposal that we should be aware of?
We never include gratuity, however, they are welcome and appreciated. Although it is common practice by many other caterers to charge a separate service charge of up to 22%, Spice Catering Group does NOT do this.

What is your refund or cancellation policy?
Deposits are non-refundable. If your event date gets changed and we are available, all deposits paid to date will be applied to the new date. If the event is completely canceled, all deposits are forfeited.