Wedding and Event Catering

Find a caterer near New York, NY

Find a caterer near New York, NY

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Top 10 Caterers near New York, NY

Avatar for Chef Mala NYC
Avatar for Chef Mala NYC
Chef Mala NYC
Chef Mala NYC





  • 5 hires on Thumbtack
  • 1 similar job done near you
Kavya R. says, "My experience with Chef Mala was one of a kind. I reached out to Mala for a private dinner for my best friend. It was during the pandemic and I wanted a Michelin experience at home. From start to finish the entire experience was incredible. I told Mala about my best friend's favorite foods and some meals I had previously had that were amazing and she created a menu that was just PERFECT. She was extremely professional and responsive, and had quotes for different options to me within a few days. Mala was incredibly flexible with our dietary restrictions. We have severe allergies in our group and, not only did we need a menu planned around those allergies, we also requested that Mala use our kitchen utensils, pans, knives, etc. (Of course, we purchased the utensils needed that we did not already have.) Mala was incredibly easy to work with and prepared a fabulous meal in our kitchen using only our kitchen tools, giving us a peace of mind we typically don't get at restaurants. On the day of the dinner, Mala was on-time and it was a joy talking to her as she prepared our meal. She is so knowledgeable and we learned so much about the ingredients and her techniques. She sat down with us for part of the meal and we just loved talking with her and getting to know her. The food itself was just fantastic. It was one of the best meals I have had in my entire life, certainly better than the meals I have had at 3-star Michelin restaurants. I was also shocked at what an incredible value the whole experience was. We spent less than half of what we would have at a 3-star Michelin. And it was really nice to be able to purchase our own wine for pairings. On top of the financial value, there was also an intrinsic value that I wasn't really expecting. It was SO nice to be able to enjoy this meal at home - wearing cozy clothes, drinking cocktails on the patio beforehand, getting up and dancing between courses, settling in for a movie afterwards. The experience had the things we love about fine dining (impeccable food and service) without the stuffiness of fine dining, which really allowed us to loosen up and just spend quality time with one another. TLDR: 10/10, highly recommend, can't wait to do it again."See more

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 New York caterers
Dan E.
Very high quality catering
JP Fine Foods LLCJP Fine Foods LLC
Lindsay S.
Perfect! I requested catering services very last minute since my previous caterer canceled and Chef chris came to my rescue! He was so helpful and accommodating and I felt relieved the second I spoke with him. The event was flawless and It was a blessing in disguise that the previous caterer canceled because I got to experience NY Catering Service. Can’t wait to do this again. Thanks!!
NY Catering Service & Personal ChefNY Catering Service & Personal Chef
Sam L.
Great Caterers, great food, great setup, easy to work with.
Joshua F.
Amazing catering experience! The food, cocktails and service were outstanding!
JP Fine Foods LLCJP Fine Foods LLC
Thumbtack Customer
Working with Bacco catering has been a wonderful experience. They took the time to understand exactly what I wanted/needed in a caterer before providing me with a quote. Very professional and personable-perfect for a corporate party.
Bacco Catered EventsBacco Catered Events
Nicole B.
SGS Catering did an amazing job catering my my family's combination birthday/anniversary party. They worked in a far lass than ideal kitchen and delivered for a fabulous cocktail party! I highly recommend!
S.G.S Catering & Private Chef Services LLCS.G.S Catering & Private Chef Services LLC
Esteban M.
Best cocktail party catering experience ever! Highly recommend!
JP Fine Foods LLCJP Fine Foods LLC
Myra d.
Soul Savory Catering was a pleasure to work with. They catered my “cocktail hour style”wedding reception with ease! The menu was perfect, they worked well with all the last minute changes- venue change, no access to a full kitchen, and small working area - all without a hitch! Additionally, their servers were super attentive and friendly! I would definitely recommend Soul Savory Catering for your next event!
Soul Savory CateringSoul Savory Catering
Brandon U.
Gindara was incredible. Would happily refer them to anyone looking to cater an event.
Gindara catering | EventsGindara catering | Events
Janeen B.
One of the best catering services I have experienced to date, the team worked with me in detail to select a wonderful menu, my guest loved the food, their presentation and professionalism. Overall S.G.S provided an amazing catering experience for my event!
S.G.S Catering & Private Chef Services LLCS.G.S Catering & Private Chef Services LLC
Ana W.
Perfect cocktail party catering in our New York apartment. The food and service was exceptional!
JP Fine Foods LLCJP Fine Foods LLC
Sharon B.
Marilyn and her team did a wonderful job catering my holiday cocktail party. She was very organized and a pleasure to work with. I’ve used other caterers and she provided excellent value and superb food. I would definitely reccomend her.
Juste Hors D'Oeuvres and Much More, LLCJuste Hors D'Oeuvres and Much More, LLC
Anne C.
This catering company is absolutely amazing! They catered my wedding reception perfectly, and they even wrapped up the leftovers for me at the end. Also, they were so clean, organized, and professional. They even helped provide me with a knife, plates, and forks for my wedding cake. I highly recommend them!
Startups Catering & EventsStartups Catering & Events
Leticia G.
Rasheem did an amazing job catering my event. Very impressed by his culinary skills. Thank u!
Rasheem Food With FlavorRasheem Food With Flavor
Michael F.
Chef Diane and her Crew are outstanding! We are looking forward to having her cater out future events!
Diane Douglaston CateringDiane Douglaston Catering
Thumbtack Customer
I am thrilled to have Ms. Foster cater my event, she had a very good line of communication and was able to accommodate me for the services I needed and at a very good price! I cannot wait to for my tasting!! I am excited for T&C Catering to make my wedding special!
T&C CateringT&C Catering
Lauren M.
When hiring a caterer who is coming into your home, it is important that you feel comfortable with them and that they make your guests feel at ease. Tamara was everything I had hoped for in a caterer. She is professional, responsive and warm. Her team was professional, respectful and friendly. The food was hearty, healthy and delicious. Absolutely recommend!
Thumbtack Customer
Tamara catered a company event with about 100 people and did an excellent job! The food was delicious, everything was very organized, and she can work with limited space/supplies and still produce amazing food and drinks. I would definitely hire her for our next event and highly recommend her to anyone looking for a caterer.
Jennifer J.
Germaine was great to work with. She catered an HRC Women LEAD event for us this past week. We were on the fence about hiring a caterer but Germaine definitely came through and people really enjoyed the food! She has a creative offering so you're not just getting the same ol' thing that you see at other events.
Chef Germaine Batiste  -   Executive Chef/OwnerChef Germaine Batiste - Executive Chef/Owner
Jillian R.
I hired NY Catering service for a cocktail party of about 50 people. Chef Chris was an ultimate professional - And his staff was extremely friendly and helpful throughout the night. The food was delicious! The guests were extremely complimentary and impressed with the quality of the food and the service of the staff. The event was wonderful and I look forward to hiring NY Catering service again in the future!
NY Catering Service & Personal ChefNY Catering Service & Personal Chef
Thumbtack Customer
Jaime-Faye B.
Open Skies was incredibly responsive, professional, and more affordable than most other catering options yet their service and product was top notch.
OpenSkies HospitalityOpenSkies Hospitality
Daniela P.
Wayne catered a 15 person party for me that was outstanding. Not only was the food incredibly tasty and unique, but the presentation was exceptional. I highly recommend him!
Global Chefz Catering And Private Chef Services...Global Chefz Catering And Private Chef Services...
Jen G.
All I can say is WOW! We hired chef Chris and his team at NY Catering Service super last minute, as our original caterer backed out two days before the event. We couldn’t believe what this company was able to pull together on such short notice for a large group of 150 people!! The food, staff, decor, everything was perfect and Chris was so helpful from the very start. Communicative, professional, and reassuring. I guess it was a blessing in disguise that the other guy canceled. We’ll be using Chef Chris and NY Catering Service for all our future events! Highly recommended!
NY Catering Service & Personal ChefNY Catering Service & Personal Chef
Kareem H.
The appetizers were delightful and everyone enjoyed. Particularly the mac and cheese, eggrolls, steak, and chicken and waffles. Thank you so much Brooklyn Kitchen Catering
Brooklyn Kitchen Catering & EventsBrooklyn Kitchen Catering & Events
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