Choosing and hiring a caterer for your reception is a huge decision, so make the time to do your homework and research your options before you take that step.
If you’ve opted for a full-service venue, you may have committed to using their preferred or in-house caterers. If not, you will need to research and select the right caterer for your event. Whatever the case, start brainstorming menu ideas and make a shortlist of potential vendors that you’re most interested in hiring.
When you’re ready to talk details, make sure you have handy all of the information they’ll need from you — your budget, your venue, your wedding date, and the number of guests.
Decide whether you’re shooting for something formal or more relaxed. Consider these popular options:
Serve a plated meal: If your heart is set on an over-the-top formal affair, this traditional option will provide your guests with a full-service dinner. It may be the more expensive choice, requiring more servers per guest than other options.
Offer a buffet: Display your favorite foods in a more relaxed atmosphere. You may save a little money when hiring the wait staff, as guests will be helping themselves to the dishes on the table. It will be harder to determine how much food you need, so you may wind up with leftovers.
Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres: If you’d rather skip dinner and go straight for the party, you may opt for food stations, smaller plates, and passing around hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. Your caterer can help you decide how many and what drinks to serve and whether or not you need to hire a bartender.
GET TO KNOW YOUR CATERER
When you’re ready to call up potential caterers, make sure you ask the right questions so you can make the right choice based on what you can afford and what best fits your vision. Here are a few questions for the caterer to get you started:
• Do you have a license and carry liability insurance?
• Do you recommend any food choices for the style of my wedding?
• Can you offer a special menu for children?
• Can you offer special diet options like vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, or kosher? If so, will cost me anything extra?
• Will you offer me a tasting before I make my final decisions on the menu?
• How will you determine the cost?
• Will you provide the necessary wait staff?
• Will you provide a banquet manager or an on-site coordinator?
• Do you offer any rentals?
Hire the caterers that can best meet your needs and started bringing your reception plans to life. Make sure you have plenty of contact information for your caterers and plenty of time to help them choose the perfect menu.
Every element of your wedding day is a chance to reflect your personality, and the cake you choose will be no exception. Whether you’re turning to your venue’s preferred bakery or you’re bringing in an outside vendor, choosing a dessert for your reception is a time to really get creative and share your favorite foods with your favorite folks.
If you’ve been exploring cake designs and can’t seem to make a decision, here is our advice on how to narrow it down:
Keep it Classic — Nothing says sophistication quite like a traditional, elegant, white wedding cake. Go for a few simple layers or stack it sky high.
Fresh and Fruity — Weddings are all about celebrating the perfect match, right? Then it only makes sense to pair your cake with piles of fresh local fruit, which can add bold colors and something surprisingly sweet.
Fetching Flowers — You carry them, wear them, and display them on your wedding day, so why not add them to your cake? Incorporate fresh cut flowers for a little extra romance.
Go Naked — Dial back the drama, bid adieu to the outer layer of frosting, and let the ingredients speak for themselves with the honest-to-goodness beauty of a “naked” cake.
Be Bold — White cake never goes out of style, but who said you had to follow the rules? Branch out and let your favorite colors do the talking with a vibrantly decorated cake.
Get Creative — Looking for variety? Ditch the cake concept and go for cupcakes, cookies, macaroons, doughnuts, truffles, marshmallows, cake pops, crêpes, or a variety of them all.
Candy Shop — Break out a collection of sweet little snacks and add a candy bar to your display. You’ll feel like a kid again and break up your reception with lots of color.
Grab a Slice — Looking for something a little more down-to-earth? Enjoy some down-home indulgence with an array of fresh-baked local pies.
C.R. Catering co.
C.R. Catering Co. is Casa Rustica Restaurant’s sister company. We are pleased to offer the High Country’s finest gourmet catering for events on and off site. We provide fresh, distinctive food and quality service for each and every event. We are happy to accommodate dietary restrictions, and regularly prepare vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan meals. North Carolina’s freshest seafood and the finest locally grown vegetables appear regularly on our custom designed catering menus. Want a family favorite included in your menu? No problem! We can customize any item for your special event. Need the perfect space to accommodate your catering needs? We can serve 25 to 150 guests on-site with ease. Give us a call. 828-406-7721
Dominic Geraghty has been an executive chef for over 30 years serving delicacies in places as far away as New Mexico, Alaska, California, Massachusetts, Scotland, and his native home of England. His delicious creations are now available in the High Country for catering. His specialties of Beef Wellington, Boeuf Bourguignon, or Chicken Pot Pie would be a delight at any of your wedding functions. His pies and cakes are fabulous and are fit for a "Queen or King." With the help of his wife, Meryle Geraghty and their dedicated staff, your guests will enjoy some of the best food in the High Country. Please see our catering menus and photos on our website. 828-963-8228
Chef Ed Winebarger trained at the Johnson and Wales University School of Culinary Arts in Charleston, South Carolina and today resides on a seven-acre, fully operational organic farm. With more than 20 years of experiences in the Boone area food service industry, he specializes in organic farm-to-table catering and also offers gluten free and vegetarian menus. 828-773-4318
Gadabouts has been pleased to cater and plan weddings and special events for the North Carolina High South since 2004. As a professional and full-service catering and event planning company, our specialties include weddings and rehearsal dinners, as well as corporate galas, grand openings and other social events. With certified wedding planners and consultants on staff, as well as a professional catering team, Gadabouts is especially prepared to provide perfect memories for a lifetime! Convenient to all North Carolina High South Venues in Valle Crucis, Linville, Blowing Rock, Banner Elk, and Boone NC, Gadabouts is truly the caterer to call for that perfect wedding or special event! We would love to discuss the opportunity with you. 828-297-7886
Gamekeeper Catering is committed to making your event unforgettable. You can reserve the entire restaurant, the Vineyard Room, or the bar. GK also handles catered events at Camp Sky Ranch or the site of your choosing. Our staff is experienced and attentive to all of your needs. Options include: On-site grilling, Hors d’oeuvres, Buffets, Plated dinners, and Family-style Stations 828-963-7400
The Cake Lady — I am a self-taught cake artist and I work alone out of my professional home kitchen. I bake every cake, create every sauce, puree, buttercream ... that makes them delicious. I build and decorate every cake. I deliver and set up every cake (well - on really busy days, my husband sometimes helps!) I am proud to be a part of your special day, and I will do everything I can to make it live up to your dreams! I have worked with countless brides, grooms, and their families and it is a joyful business indeed!! It would be my honor to be a part of your magical day by making a wedding cake for your NC mountain wedding! 828-295-3738
Peabody’s Wine & Beer was established in 1978 and has the region’s largest and finest selection of wine and beers. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff can assist in all aspects of your rehearsal and wedding beverage needs while staying in your budget. Allow us to make planning your beverage needs fun and easy, as we have done for thousands of weddings for over 35 years. Please give us a call or visit our web site for consultation on making your celebration the toast of the town! 828-264-9476.
Proper Southern Food
Based in downtown Boone, Proper is an homage to a Southern upbringing. It is a way of life that includes an honest living, being polite and eating good food. On your wedding day, feed your friends and family lovingly prepared, locally sourced Southern cuisine from Proper. Can’t get enough Proper? Come hungry and stop by the restaurant in Boone’s historic jailhouse. 828-865-5000.
Reid's Café & Catering
At Reid's Cafe & Catering we offer seasonal menus customized for every occasion, specializing in locally sourced and handcrafted foods. We believe in the importance of bringing those you love together through food and conversation. We value the handmade and fashion from scratch details as small as the aioli and dressings we use, to house made focaccia and pastries, slow roasted meats and naturally fermented pickles. We avoid industrially grown and processed foods. This translates throughout our planning process to include varied menu possibilities ranging from traditional favorites to ethnic flavors from around the world. We love the intentional, the specific, the well-cared-for. 828-268-9600 www.reidscafeandcatering.com
Stick Boy Bread Co.
Stick Boy Bread Co. uses traditional ingredients and methods to produce a wide range of baked goods and boats a full espresso and smoothie bar, but it’s also been in the wedding business for a long time, delivering amazing cakes all over the High Country time and time again. Not only does Stick Boy offer custom wedding cakes, Stick Boy Kitchen is ready to meet all of your catering needs, too. 828-268-9900
Ugga Mugga Bakery
Ugga Mugga Bakery is a gourmet bakery serving North Carolina's High Country. We specialize in artistically crafted and gourmet wedding cakes, event cakes, dessert bars, and catering. We bake everything from scratch, fresh, and with the highest quality ingredients we can find. Designs can be anything from the simple and elegant to the crazy, colorful, and unique. Call today to schedule your cake tasting and design session. 724-799-1334
Looking for a caterer for your corporate event, wedding reception, wedding rehearsal or celebrations? Contact Woodlands. We cater barbeque, chicken, ribs, and much more. Most items from our menu are available for catering. Meals come with baked beans, cole slaw, rolls, and iced tea. Plates, plastic ware, napkin, and ice are included. Catering available for groups from 40 to 3000. Smaller orders can be picked up. Woodlands is famous for its catering services and has been serving the High Country for over 30 years. 828-295-3651