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Rockford Wedding Caterers

Browse these wedding caterers with great ratings from Thumbtack customers in Rockford.

North Island Catering
4.8
from 145 reviews
  • 32 years in business
  • 263 hires on Thumbtack
Dylan S.
Verified review

Long Story Short: If you are looking for a caterer for a smaller corporate event, graduation party, birthday party, casual wedding… HIRE NORTH ISLAND CATERING! They are very accommodating, and work their butt off to give you exactly what you want for your event. They make delicious home made food, for a reasonable price. If you are looking for something very large, more high-end, with passed hors devours, or signature cocktails, keep moving. The Details: We hired North Island Catering for our wedding reception for roughly 175 people held at the Haight in Elgin, IL. We wanted a heavy appetizer set up with hand held buffet style food options for dinner. Additionally we had desserts and a late-night food option. We also wanted a full open bar for guests, and champagne welcome. The Food: First off, Allen was very cooperative and flexible when it came to picking out our menu and food options for the event. Unfortunately, we were so busy with mingling with guests, we really didn’t get to try too much of the food ourselves! However, many of our guests gave us great compliments on the spread. Allen allowed us to come in for a ‘tasting’ at his restaurant beforehand to get a feel for the types of food they offer. Everything was delicious, everything! We ended up serving a whole gamut of different hot and cold appetizers, including jalapeno poppers, bacon wrapped shrimp, veggies, fruit, sweet & spicy jelly spread, among others. For dinner we served pulled 2 different salads, pork, tinga, and Italian beef along with a ton of other sides. We received nothing but happy reviews from our guests regarding the food. The brownies got a standing ovation! The late night food was a success, and I saw many people with a hot dog in one hand and drink in the other, working it on the dance floor. The Service/Presentation: Allen and his crew arrived to the event on time, and prepared to get the food out quickly and efficiently. We had a lot of food, and a lot of hungry people. One negative we did feel the need to comment on was the presentation. We requested heavy plastic plates and silverware, and I was a bit surprised to see small white paper plates with purple details instead. The dressings for the salad were set up in large Styrofoam cups, with a plastic spoon to ladle. I felt that this part could have been jazzed up a bit. Food was placed on black plastic trays, and the hot food was kept in metal tins (no problems there). Although not a huge deal, I would recommend having place cards or some way of labeling the food in the future, so guests know what they are grabbing. Alcohol was served in clear plastic cups (perfect), but towards the end of the night it moved to red solo cups, not a favorite of mine, but no big deal in the end. Although not the fault of Allen, I think that in the future allowing the table to be served off of both sides would have eliminated the long line of people waiting to get some grub! Allen and North Island Catering did a great job of getting food out when needed, providing great food, and cleaning up in a timely manner. Our venue had pretty strict policies regarding catering and Allen, and his team, were up for the challenge. The Bar: This is the part of the review where I was a bit hesitant to write. Everything turned out to be okay in the end, but there were some hiccups along the way. Since the beginning of communication with Allen, they let us know that they would like our input on deciding the amounts of alcohol we would like served. Allen had asked us to provide a complete list of alcohol we wanted. We did, and it included some higher end spirits. Allen gave us an updated quote for the alcohol and let us know that anything left over would be ours to keep. After running some numbers and doing the math ourselves, we provided our alcohol estimates to Allen. He stated that he thought it was completely too much. Being a catering professional, we trusted in his work, and let him make the final decision on how much to buy. When we arrived at the venue in the morning (we decorated ourselves the day of), we were surprised to see how little alcohol there was. In our minds, we knew that with our group of friends and family, they would be taking full advantage of a full bar! Our day-of venue organizer also made some suggestions that she didn’t feel the alcohol/mixers would be enough given the size of our large party. We were able to contact Allen right away and voice our concerns. We even offered to have him buy more than he thought we needed and return what was left (as opposed to having us keep anything leftover). Allen understood our concerns, and ultimately brought more alcohol to the event. This was just an unnecessary stress for us on the day of the event. On a positive note, when booze was running low, North Island Catering even went out during the event and bought more. Additionally, a small mistake was made and a different brand of beer was bought than what we previously discussed. (I had time to change the Bar Sign with the correct brand, so ultimately it was no big deal). Finally, we paid to have the bar until 12 (midnight). Not sure where the miscommunication occurred, but the bartenders started cleaning the bar and announcing last call at around 11pm. We had lots of guests coming up to us, wondering why they could no longer get a drink. We did not realize the venue wanted the caterers to be gone by 12, so we were expecting the service to run a bit later. The bartenders continued to hand out beers as they were cleaning, so kudos to them. The Communication: Communication with Allen was impeccable. Allen was always very responsive via Thumbtack, and by phone. (Even when there was a Blackhawks game on). Allen was quick to offer suggestions, answers, and solutions to our questions and concerns within a few hours of us reaching out. If there was any reason to contact them, we knew that he would respond quickly. This was very reassuring since we planned the event completely ourselves. The day of the event Allen was able to answer phone calls and texts without a problem. The Price: The price of this event was very fair, and I think it was worth every penny. Our venue planner demanded that North Island Catering bring more workers to help with the service, and the addition of these people were the only last minute costs we had to endure (no fault of North Island). I appreciated that North Island Catering provided us with a price, negotiated with us to allow us to keep under our budget, and stuck with their promise in the end.

Top Pro
Cater~2~U Catering LLC
5.0
from 49 reviews
  • 10 years in business
  • 68 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Mariusz Z.
Verified review

Mike and Matt did birthday party for us at our home, catering for 30 people. Service was very professional and I would recommend them for any next party. Thanks you Mike and Matt!

  • 8 years in business
  • 26 hires on Thumbtack
Alexa M.
Verified review

We had our tasting with Diana today and officially hired her to bake our wedding cake! Diana has been very responsive and allowed us to design our cake with her, which was a lot of fun and helped me envision the final product! I'm planning on following up on this review after the wedding, but so far we are very pleased! Thank you, Diana!

Taste The World Catering
5.0
from 10 reviews
    Lauren B.
    Verified review

    TTW Catering did a great job at our Birthday party! Thanks!

    Holoubek Photography
    5.0
    from 2 reviews
    • 24 years in business
    • 1 hire on Thumbtack
    Jamie C.
    Verified review

    Tom has done our engagement and wedding photos. All of which were absolutely amazing. He definitely out my husband, who hates having his picture taken, and I at ease and made the engagement session fun. We will continue to go to Tom for future pictures. We will be seeing him so for family pictures as well as maternity and new born pictures in the very near future!!

    Sattin's Pastry Kitchen
    5.0
    from 2 reviews
    • 6 years in business
    • 1 hire on Thumbtack
    Ann L.
    Verified review

    Sattin made the cake for my friend's wedding and it was DELICIOUS! I've had sattin's cakes and desserts before and they are always so good. I recommend her to people all the time, no one is ever disappointed!

    • 16 years in business
    Quandariius N.
    Verified review

    The food here is amazing! Great staff!

    Black Label Bartenders
    5.0
    from 1 review
    • 4 years in business
    • 1 hire on Thumbtack
    Susanne M.
    Verified review

    Chris and Carla were great. They provided the backup we needed to have a wonderful wedding venue in our backyard. They are very professional and pleasant and would use them again. I highly recommend them.

    Caterer & Personal Chef
    5.0
    from 1 review
    • 1 hire on Thumbtack
    Melissa R.
    Verified review

    Everything was beyond. A perfect anniversary! Every moment. Every bite. Every sip. All & more. ??

    LaBelleVie
    5.0
    from 1 review
    • 9 years in business
    Tachelle M.
    Verified review

    LaBelleVie catered our wedding reception in June. I could not have picked a better place. The food was delicious (we had an upscale style taco bar.) The bar they set up was fantastic! They brought a beer garden indoors, with an amazing assortment of cocktails.(we married in an old farm building so it really helped classy up the place)Chris Sutton and her staff worked with me on every thought or concern I may have had. They all really went above and beyond to make sure I had the most perfect wedding reception. I even used their beautifully decorated bar in Aledo IL. to take some of my wedding photos in.

    About

    I'm a caterer. My career began with my mother. She was a caterer. After being with her, I then had a passion for catering. She taught me everything in the kitchen. Since then, I went on to further my education in Culinary Arts. After graduating, I then began to do catering for funeral repast, weddings, parties and small and large events. Cooking is something that I love and have a passion to do. My motto is "A passion to serve".

    About

    We are full-service banquet hall and specializing in off-site catering. We can fulfill all of your personal and corporate catering needs, from edible favors to carving and action stations. All of our food is made in house by a classically trained chef owner/operator.

    • 5 years in business
    About

    About

    I am an Angelican priest available for traditional weddings. My church is in Janesville; however, I can do weddings at other locations.

    • 19 years in business
    About

    We will customize your event. Let us do the work. We have 25 years of culinary experience. We cater all foods and events.

    About

    We are a full-service catering company that provides customized menus to your specific gathering where we bring "food and more to your door."

    About

    Thank you for your interest in Wild Asparagus. Whether you are having a small gathering in your home or a large event at the venue of your choice, it is our hope that we are able to provide the most beautiful and stunning food experience possible for our clients, with emphasis on quality, professional service and the freshest ingredients available. Please keep in mind as you review our menus that we are a full-service, custom caterer and are able to modify any menu item to suit your taste and vision. If there is something that you do not see on our menu, do not be afraid to ask. We are well-versed and encourage special requests. From our sauces and dressing to our hors d'oeuvres and entrees, all of our menu items are made in-house. We do not use prepackaged goods from distributors or large retail stores and pass the cost on to you at an inflated price. We do not use hot box; we prep each item as far as we can in our kitchen and finish the product on-site, so that you are guaranteed a restaurant-quality product rather than a reheated banquet product. Although, the Chicagoland area offers many choices for on-site catering, there is a lack of services which strive for the level of excellence that we provide here at Wild Asparagus. Comments we hear over and over again from our clients are these: "You have to come up with another name other than catering because catered food is not this good," or "The food made the entire event." People often expect the food at large events to be merely edible at best. We would like to not only shatter the expectations of our clients and their guests with a product that is delicious and aesthetically appealing, but to also raise the bar within the catering industries in the Chicagoland area. With Wild Asparagus, we would like everyone who attends one of our functions to not only receive the quality foods and services that one would expect at top restaurants but to also expect fabulous results. We look forward to speaking with you about the menu and details of your event. Again, thank you for the opportunity to provide you with a fabulous fare, a beautiful presentation and an outstanding customer service. What we promise are experiences that astonish and please; what we hope for are memories you will cherish for years to come.

    About

    Truly I believe there is passion in my food, I so enjoy preparing, creating new and old recipes with my own personal influences.

    • 19 years in business
    About

    We have the best wraps in town! We have the flexibility to cater to your needs. Just let us know what you need and we'll make it happen!

    About

    A full service caterer with excellent reputation for outstanding food and service!

    About

    I am an award-winning chef. I have been on TV. I am a Frankenfood winner. I created the gyro bites. I can cook the best food you will ever eat. I can cook all kinds of food. Call me for all your catering needs.

    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.

    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.

    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 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.
    Hire skilled professionals for absolutely everything.