Wedding and Event Catering

Find a caterer near Roseville, CA

Find a caterer near Roseville, CA

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Top 10 Caterers near Roseville, CA

Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

How do you find a good caterer?

Reviews, interviews and menu tastings will help you find the right catering choice for your big day. Start by screening possible wedding caterers based on past reviews. If a caterer you are interested in has a review that concerns you, ask them about it; how they respond will be very telling. Next, ask about their availability for your wedding date.

If the wedding caterer is available on your date, it’s time to talk about menus and prices. Be clear about what your maximum budget is find out what choices this will allow you. Caterers may custom-create a menu for your event, or they may have menu templates within different price ranges that can guide your decision. A clear budget gives the caterer clear parameters within which to work and offer creative suggestions. Schedule a menu tasting to confirm you love your wedding menu. Once you have a menu and date, and have paid a deposit to reserve the caterer’s services, confirm additional details including when the food will be delivered to the site, what kind of service will be provided, how many servers will be onsite and for how long, and who is responsible for setup and cleanup. The more specific your contract, the fewer worries you’ll have on your wedding day. Get more smart hiring tips here.

How much does it cost to hire a caterer?

Catering prices depend mainly on how fancy you want the food and service to be and how many guests you’ll have. When you’re first looking to hire a caterer for your event, consider how many guests you’ll have and your total food and drink budget. The national average for event catering is $340, but catering prices can range into the thousands depending on your menu, guest count, and service.

Event catering is a broad term that covers everything from fully prepared, ready-to-eat food that the hosts plate and serve themselves to full-service, multicourse meals, including rental of linens, glassware and other items, with service staff organized by the catering company. Usually a caterer will determine cost based on the type of event you’re having, how many guests will attend, the level of service you desire, and what type of menu you’d like to have. For example, if you have a set catering budget, say $1,500, and you plan to have 50 people attend, that means you have $30 per person for food. If you have the same budget with 100 people, you have $15 per person for food. In this way, the number of people you want to attend your event and the level of food you want to serve them determines how much catering will cost.

How much should catering cost per person?

Catering prices can range from about $10 per guest on the low end to $150 or more per person on the high end. Catering costs represent the quality of food, presentation, variety, ingredients and service. But catering prices are more than the cost to cook the food that will be at your party; they also include the cost for the company to do business. Here is a simple breakdown of catering prices:

  • Menu: The food you serve your guests will directly affect the price per person. Organic ingredients, complex recipes, elaborate presentations, or high-ticket items like lobster or filet mignon all add to the cost.
  • Service: Buffet, family style, plated dinners — how you serve the food affects the cost per person. For example, a true plated meal can cost about twice the price of a staff-assisted buffet because of staffing costs. Hiring waiters, bartenders and cleanup crew will all be calculated into the per-person catering price.
  • Drinks: Providing beverages and alcoholic drinks for guests greatly increases your catering budget. Hosting an open bar can cost as much per person as the meal.
  • Rentals: Seating, plates, glassware, etc., will all have an effect on the cost per person for catering. For example, a plastic conference table that seats 10 costs about $6 to rent on average, while a wooden farmhouse table is about $80 to rent on average.
  • Business costs: Any catering cost will also include the cost for the company to do business such as insurance, employee wages, commercial kitchen space and more.

How much does wedding catering cost per person?

Wedding catering costs will always vary based on the number of guests you’re inviting, the menu you want to serve, and the way the food will be served to your guests. As you interview wedding catering companies, you’ll be presented with a cost per person for various menus. On the low end, wedding catering may cost approximately $15-$18 per person. This would include prepared food only, with no setup or service of any kind. The starting price for a simple buffet meal with minimal service typically averages $22 per person. Opting for the same menu with all organic ingredients could raise your costs to about $33 per person. A moderately upscale menu (finer ingredients, more elaborate presentation) could range from $24 to $34 per person. High-end wedding catering cost truly has no limit. Lobster, filet mignon, specialty seafood, organic ingredients — menu choices like these can boost your cost per person up to $150 and more.

What should you look for in a caterer?

A delicious meal is a critical element of a successful wedding, with happy guests fondly remembering your fabulous wedding food. The right caterer for you will be:

  • Available: Even the best caterer is no good if they aren’t available on your wedding date. Ask early before you get your heart set on someone.
  • Affordable for you: Find a caterer that you can afford. Having a spending plan ahead of time will mean you won’t overspend on food.
  • A good personality fit: Wedding planning is stressful, so work with someone that you can get along with and communicate with easily.
  • Experienced and recommended: Ensure the company has a proven track record with events of your size and the references to back it up.
  • Transparent about money: Steer clear of shady pricing. Find a caterer who is very clear about costs and is happy to talk you through budgets and pricing options.
  • Transparent about food: Find someone who is clear about where they source their food from and where it is prepared.

How much should catering cost for a wedding?

The cost of wedding catering will reflect the level of service, the menu you choose, the luxury you desire and the number of guests you invite. Where you live also plays a major role in your wedding catering costs. The regional cost to do business and local cost of food will affect your catering bill. There is no set price for wedding catering, because each wedding and each menu is different. This is why many caterers provide a per-person price. This allows you to break down what it costs to feed each person based on the menu you want. Working with your caterer, you can adjust menu items, service level and more to accommodate your budget and guest count. Keep in mind that wedding catering costs are not just for the food. The bill reflects all the components that go into commercial food catering: a commercial kitchen, ingredients, staff, insurance, marketing and more. Here are some examples of average costs:

  • Three-course plated meal, moderately upscale, for 125 in Los Angeles: $14,000. Because of staffing costs, a true plated meal costs about twice as much as a staff-assisted buffet.
  • Buffet meal, standard menu, for 100 in Los Angeles: $5,000.
  • Per-person cost for hors d'oeuvres, dinner and nonalcoholic beverages: $24–$37, depending on menu selection, in Southern California.
  • Drop off prepared food for 50: $1,000 in North Carolina. Price does not include any service, setup or breakdown.

How do you serve food at a wedding?

Food service at your wedding will affect your catering costs and influence the atmosphere of the reception. Buffet style is more informal; plated meals are a bit fancier; family style encourages sharing. Read about the different food service styles to select your preferred wedding catering choice.

  • Buffet: Caterers can drop off prepared foods for a DIY and budget-friendly buffet option where you set everything up and food is entirely self-service. For a fuller-service buffet, the caterers set up food, oversee the buffet throughout the event, and clean up afterwards. For food only, prices per person might average $16-$18, while a service buffet may start around $20-$22 per person. Adding food stations can increase per-person costs by at least $3-$5.
  • Family style: Servers bring large platters of food to guest tables in courses. It’s less formal (and less expensive) than a plated meal, but more formal and higher-cost than a buffet. You’ll need large tables to accommodate the platters, so plan accordingly when renting furniture for the event.
  • Plated: A plated event is a formal dining experience; waitstaff serve your seated guests for each course, fill their drinks, and attend to them throughout the dinner. A plated dinner is typically the most expensive option for both food and service.
  • Food trucks: Similar to buffets, with food trucks your guests get their own food and bring it to their table. A food truck gives a relaxed and playful vibe to your reception.
  • Cocktail reception: If you don’t want a formal seated dinner, you can opt for a wide assortment of passed appetizers at an extended cocktail hour reception.

Do you tip a wedding caterer?

Tipping 15 percent to 20 percent on a $3,000 catering bill can feel daunting — especially in light of all the other costs of throwing a wedding — but tipping your wedding caterer is standard practice. Be sure to ask your caterer about their specific policies. Many catering companies include gratuity as a line item on their bill. If tipping is not automatically included in your total, a good approach is to tip all the people involved the day of the event rather than paying one lump sum to the catering company. For each server and bartender, you can tip $20-$50, depending on how long they were onsite and whether they did exceptional work. You can also tip the chef; experts suggest $50. It’s also a good idea to tip the catering manager, the point-of-contact person who keeps the catering service running smoothly the day of your wedding, ensures all the food looks beautiful and is plentiful, and resolves any mishaps. Industry pros recommend tipping the catering manager $100-$200. If gratuity is not included and you’re tipping individuals, set aside $200-$500 in cash to be safe.

Reviews for Roseville caterers
Kevin S.
Chef Jon did an amazing job catering my Mom’s surprise 70th birthday party. Not only did he fit me into his schedule last minute he also stayed and prepped the all of the dishes in our kitchen when I had just expected him to deliver everything and go, he also took the time to make sure everything was plated properly and the presentation was above board. I would not hesitate to contact him again for any future catering needs
Carol F.
Three weeks before my event my cater had to cancel due to a family emergency and I found Passionate Plates on Thumb Tack. Alisa was available and I was very nervous due to last minute changes. Well the first phone call put me a ease and it was perfect from that moment on!!! She delivered the bast food I have ever had at a event that was catered!! The Tri-tip and chicken were delicious!! The beans and salad were beautiful and delicious!! The mac and cheese was out of this world!!! There was so much food and served promptly at 6pm!!! The crowd was so impressed!!! Thank you for making our 50 year celebration just perfect!!!!!!!
Passionate PlatesPassionate Plates
Elizabeth J.
From his first prompt response to my original inquiry, thru to the beautiful delicious food he and his staff served at our home reception after my father's funeral, Paul was a breeze to work with. We had maybe 10 days lead time! Paul assured me he would take care of everything, was frequently in contact, & took in all my cues on style, flavor, etc Paul & his professional staff dedicated their time and came thru for us, very classy, nothing left undone. No other caterer will get a chance with me anymore. If I can find any excuse to cater another event, I will let Paul's company come spoil us again.
Paul Michael Signature CateringPaul Michael Signature Catering
Nicole R.
Took a chance by just reading other reviews and hired David to cater the baby shower event I was hosting and he hit it out of the park ~ all the items we ordered were fresh seasoned amazing great quantity amount presentation was great as well ... my family are amazing with barbecuing so to hire an outside vendor to come in to my home was a little scary but I am so excited to say I would hire him back 1 million times over THANK YOU COWABUNGA BBQ
Cowabunga BBQCowabunga BBQ
Thumbtack Customer
I had envisioned a very special party for 56 guests and wanted everything perfect. I interviewed 3 different companies with a special plan in mind. Chef Paul Mandalou was the only one, of the top ten rated caterers, that was willing to work with me. I wanted my party to feed people during the entire 4 hours without putting them on a schedule. One caterer submitted a beautiful presentation but it was something that you would see at a wedding with stations of different food. All food would be put out at the same time and cocktail hour was limited to one hour max before the entrée was served. This is not what I envisioned. The other guy had a nice presentation too but, once again, I would be limited to so much time for cocktails, appetizers, entrée and dessert. This was not what I had envisioned. I also wanted to sample some of the things that I wanted on the menu and the other 2 companies said they would do so but they were not very happy about this request. Chef Paul put together some amazing things for me to try 2 weeks after I contacted him. He came to my home to do so unlike the other 2 companies where I had to go to their facility. Not only was the sampled food fabulous but he was also willing to tweek a certain appetizer to my liking. I wound up getting 12 appetizers, a fabulous entrée with grilled vegetables and 3 desserts. Chef Paul is Greek so he made me 2 Greek dishes that were so good I will have to keep him on retainer just so I can get more. It is now 2 weeks after the party and my guests are still talking about it. Everyone stayed during the 4 hour time span, which is a very good sign that things are good, and the party continued into the wee hours. Everyone is still raving about the food and how personable Chef Paul was and his staff. I had 2 waiters and a Mixologist that he recommended and they would all hard working, friendly, on time and great with the clean up. Chef Paul may not have a pretty presentation like other companies but his food and service far exceed any other caterer I have used in the past. His presentation of everything is beautiful and he gives a 100 percent. He was present the whole time and did not make a lot of things in advance, like a lot of companies do, so everything was fresh and made in my home. My guests are telling me that this was the best party they have ever been to. If it were not for Chef Paul, I doubt that people would be saying this. People are telling me it was the party of the year. Would I hire Chef Paul again? Yes, without a doubt. He will be my special chef for life and I cannot wait to throw another party that he will cater. If you do not hire him, you are a fool ten fold. If you want pretty presentations and mediocre food, then don't hire him. If you want a party where the caterer tells you how it will work, then don't hire him. If you want fabulous food that people will rave about with gorgeous presentations, fabulous staff and a willingness to work with you, then Chef Paul is your man. I know I will never hire anyone else. Together we pulled off the best party I have ever thrown and I know this would never have happened if I had not hired him. If you want to call me and speak to me in person regarding a recommendation, I am more than willing to do so. Chef Paul has my permission to give out my home number upon request. Many thanks again to Chef Paul and his wonderful staff for making my special event spectacular.
Paul Michael Signature CateringPaul Michael Signature Catering
Alex C.
Chef Albert, I'm not sure where to start. My experience was absolutely phenomenal. My caterer canceled last minute, and I found Chef Albert here on Thumbtack. He worked within my budget to create a high quality Mexican themed dinner. All of my guests were ranting about how much they loved dinner and appetizers. Albert and his wife are easy going, a good time, and I would work with him 100 times again. If you're looking for a chef for your wedding, he's YOUR GUY. Thank you again, Albert. You were the highlight of the night. PS: Having a Chef that's outgoing and a good time like Albert, your guests with LOVE him.
Albert J. Hernandez The Untamed ChefAlbert J. Hernandez The Untamed Chef
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