Whether it is your first time hosting a catered event or the hundredth, there are a few essential planning steps that can help ensure your event is a success. There are a lot of moving parts in hosting any event, but using these five tips can help you get the most out of your catering from panCoast Pizza in Walnut Creek and help you have one less thing to worry about.

Get your details down

Before you reach out to your catering service, it’s important for you to solidify as many of the event details as you can. Details like date and time are must-haves while having a ballpark idea of guest count and event location are very helpful. It is also helpful to know if there will be any theme for the event, or how formal or informal it will be. When talking with your caterer, be sure to ask what date they need all the final event information by in order for them to provide their best service.

Tailor you menu

Now that you have your basic details squared away, you can use that information to tailor your menu. For example, the degree of formality of the event, the duration of the event, or the profile of your guests can all influence the type of food and how it is served. If you have a lot of adventurous palates, you can look at more unique dishes and flavor profiles. If the event is only a few hours, buffet-style might be the best way to make sure everyone is served in a timely way. Or if you will be hosting the event at an outdoor venue in the summer, you can also let seasonal and regional foods influence your menu choices.

Offer several options

With a general idea of the parameters and highlights of your menu, you can flesh it out by offering several options. It’s a good idea to work with your caterer to explore appetizers, entrees, desserts and service style options so each of your guests can enjoy the food at your event. Whether your event has a catered four-course meal or you are going to enjoy catered pizza in Walnut Creek, people love options.

Consider dietary needs

Being able to accommodate dietary needs is a big deal for those who host and cater events. Because a misstep with a food allergy can have terrible consequences, it is a good idea to ask guests if they have any needs or restrictions when they RSVP. Here are some common dietary needs to ask about: lactose intolerance, nut allergies, gluten intolerance, religious requirements such as for those who follow Kosher or Halal diets, and vegetarianism or veganism.

Get to know your caterer

Your catering service is your partner in your event, so it is essential to get to know them a bit before your guests begin to arrive. When choosing a caterer, find out how long they have been in business and if they have all the appropriate insurance and licenses. It is also okay to ask about their standing with the Better Business Bureau and if they have any references. A quality catering service will be glad to answer these questions and will also be able to communicate their needs and questions for you.

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