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  • Writer's pictureCrystal Ballroom

Planning Your Wedding Catering

The dining experience you create at your reception will be among the most defining moments of your wedding day. Not only will your wedding catering create the experience, it will determine how your wedding is remembered. Since we believe your wedding day should be memorable for all the right reasons, we are sharing tips for planning your wedding catering.

Types of Wedding Catering Services

Before you book your wedding catering, you should know the different types of services available and determine the ones you require for your special event. Drop-off service is one of the most affordable types of wedding catering. This type of service is designed to deliver your cuisine to banquet staff and food managers for a buffet-style dining experience. Full-service catering involves artfully designing plated meals, portioning and providing full-service to the reception tables. This involves setting up, breaking down, plated meals, staff services, bartender services and a much wider range of menu options. Once you can envision the way you want your wedding day to be and the type of dining experience you want to create, you need to think about the type of cuisine you want to serve.

Choosing the Cuisine

Choosing the cuisine is an exciting and enjoyable part of wedding planning. Bring your theme and palate to the table for a tasting. You might choose a favorite dish or cuisine inspired by your theme. If you are dreaming up romantic Tuscany, you might set your table with the flavors of Italy. A Beauty and the Beast love story brings your guests to a table of romantic French cuisine. Whether you are planning something traditional or you are letting your theme set the table, dietary restrictions, religion and allergies are the only rules to consider. Everyone has a unique palate; therefore, you will never please everyone. Balance your decisions and choose wedding catering that can provide the experience you want to deliver. Instead of searching for wedding catering, seek diversity, customization, creativity, experience, flavor and presentation.

Beverage Packages

Some catering companies have a liquor license and offer bar packages that can work to your advantage, if negotiated and packaged right. If you are hosting your wedding at an all-inclusive wedding venue with bar services, it could make sense to stock your own bar and utilize the bar services at the venue. Not every bar package involves alcoholic beverages. There are also juice and coffee stations. Get creative with your caterer and build a package that fits your vision for your wedding day.

Choosing a Wedding Catering Company

Never accept anything less than experience. Inexperienced wedding catering will result in memories you did not intend to create. Your wedding catering should arrive on time with proper presentation and portions for every guest in attendance. Inexperience wedding catering risks too much on your wedding day. Experience avoids everything from cold food to not enough food on your wedding day. It is always recommended that you use wedding catering companies that are recommended by your wedding venue. Wedding venues have cultivated relationships with preferred caterers by working on countless events together. Make sure your venue has food managers and day of event coordinators to help you create the flawless moments your special day deserves.

Budgeting for the Wedding Catering

While it is risky to base wedding catering solely upon the price of a plate, it will be a factor. Keep in mind that skimping in this area risks disaster on your wedding day. A professional caterer with a reputation will cost between $25 and $40 per plate on average. Catering can cost less or much more, depending on skill and reputation. Negotiate and customize your packages to receive the most savings. Having a drop-off service that works with the banquet staff at your wedding venue can deliver a superior dining experience for less. Drop-off service is not right for everyone. If you desire full-service wedding catering, your wedding venue will be able to recommend vendors with special packages to save you more.

Coordinating Your Wedding Catering

Coordinating the timing and delivery of your wedding catering is just as important as coordinating the ceremony. Your entire celebration will revolve around the food and the entertainment. One of the most critical mishaps that could possibly occur would be food never making its way to the venue. Next to the missing food experience would be late service of food. There are many more issues affecting your wedding catering to consider, such as temperature issues, insufficient quantities and poor presentation. Having a food manager at your venue can help you create a flawless dining experience.

Crystal Ballroom on the Lake

Crystal Ballroom on the Lake is an all-inclusive wedding venue that bundles the venue, furnishings, décor and services into an affordable luxury wedding package. This saves you thousands on your wedding day, while providing an upfront cost for almost the entire event you are planning. Upgrades can help you customize your wedding to match your budget. Crystal Ballroom on the Lake includes an in-house design team to decorate the entire ceremony space and reception ballroom, a bartender service, banquet staff, furnishings, chinaware, all the linens, centerpieces and décor. Crystal Ballroom also offers food managers and day of event coordinators to manage your entire dining experience. Plan a fairy tale and choose your wedding catering in one place.


We invite you to discover the
Crystal Ballroom difference found in the unparalleled elegance and uniqueness written into the design of each of our venues. The themes are as limitless as your imagination.

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