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Arlington Food Service Professionals

Browse these food service professionals with great ratings from Thumbtack customers in Arlington.

Top Pro
Catering By Kevin!
4.8
from 145 reviews
  • 28 years in business
  • 187 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Alie S.
Verified review

I host our monthly all hands meeting here at Excella Consulting for 100 attendees. Chef Kev provided me with a drop of catered dinner for all guests. The food and service was amazing! I highly recommend his meals.

Top Pro
  • 24 years in business
  • 91 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Joann F.
Verified review

My guests totally enjoyed the food, his service and presentation were great and added to a delightful evening. Will definitely use him again.

Top Pro
Mercedes Jo Events
4.9
from 63 reviews
  • 9 years in business
  • 109 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Artranda H.
Verified review

Mercedes Jo Events & Catering was so delicious, high-quality buffet for our wedding. Working with Mercedes was simple and enjoyable! With a huge variety of options,Mercedes was able to customize the perfect menu. This vendor provides first-class food and service at a very reasonable price.Mercedes is worth every penny! People are still talking about the wonderful food she prepared. I would definitely recommend her to anyone on a budget, food was delicious. I will be using her again for any future events. Thanks again

Top of the City Catering
4.9
from 59 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 85 hires on Thumbtack
Natasha A.
Verified review

The customer service and food were both top notch! Maribel and her staff were fantastic to work with throughout the planning process and the day of the event. She worked with me to ensure my needs were met, my questions were answered, and my concerns were eliminated! I would highly recommend this company to anyone looking for a caterer for any event.

Top Pro
AC Catering
4.9
from 35 reviews
  • 55 years in business
  • 34 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Michelle F.
Verified review

I genuinely can’t say enough good things about this business. I hired AC Catering for two events I held in June and July 2017. Everything was excellent! I was beyond happy with everything from the food, to the services, to the people I interacted with during the planning phase and the actual events. This small, family owned business actually exceeded my expectations. They have an extensive menu to choose from which allowed me to tailor both events’ meals appropriately. The pricing was great and the amount of food I received was more than enough. AC Catering received many compliments for the quality of their food at both of my events. I took a risk and hired them without having tasted any of their food, but I have to say there was no need for worry. The food was also delicious! Both my guests and I enjoyed every bite. The serve and clean up service was also top notch. George Sullivan and his staff were extremely attentive to my needs during my banquet. They helped to ensure that the dinner ran smoothly, and cleanup was quick and efficient. I can't leave this review without noting that it was a great pleasure working with George Sullivan (principal owner/operator) when coordinating my needs. He was very responsive to the myriad of questions I had, extremely flexible as I proposed changes for my event, and just an extremely nice guy. I am so glad I found this business. I will definitely be using AC Catering if I have any catering needs in the future.

A Private Affair
4.5
from 37 reviews
  • 5 years in business
  • 49 hires on Thumbtack
Bertram B.
Verified review

Outstanding service food was presidential first to call for any function I will have

Top Pro
Clever Catering
5.0
from 28 reviews
  • 19 years in business
  • 39 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Brynn W.
Verified review

Richard was a real pleasure to work with from the first phone call to the end of a very successful party. He was very helpful with his advice on our menu and with the guidance on the beverage purchases for a party our size (50,) He and Linda (the bartender) arrived on time and had the food laid out and the cooking stations and bar set up in plenty of time to start serving some early arriving guests. He circulated with the guests to make sure everyone was happy and had what they wanted and checked in with me throughout the evening to make sure all was going well from my perspective. Richard made crab cakes on the spot and they were a favorite. He also made delicious quesadillas on the spot, as well. His meatballs, chicken satay and stuffed mushrooms were all gobbled up. I overheard a couple of guests praising the peanut sauce and expressing interest in eating it by the spoonful:) All of the dips he provided were delicious as well. And the mini cheesecakes and cookies were also very good. All in all, Richard and Linda gave us a wonderful evening, without having to worry about a thing. To a person, I heard nothing but praise for the service and the food. I would hire Clever Catering again in a heartbeat:)

PHG Catering
4.9
from 23 reviews
  • 20 years in business
  • 26 hires on Thumbtack
Sarah G.
Verified review

They were very professional, quick to respond and showed up on time. They were very easy to work with and the food was good overall.

Top Pro
MOD Cuisine
5.0
from 21 reviews
  • 31 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Bob J.
Verified review

I engaged Mary because I am recentlya retired man and, among my retirement goals, was to learn how to cook. Now, I can/could scramble some eggs or make some pancakes, and I could certainly microwave, but I couldn't do what i wanted: prepare my own meals in a way that would allow me to eat healthy and well. Even following a recipe was a challenge. Who know what it means to braise something, to parboil! Once Mary understood my goals, she prepared a tailored curriculum. She developed two-hour sessions in her kitchen, the better to get into a full meal preparation. There was a heavy emphasis on safety in the kitchen, from washing hands before handling certain items to proper chopping technique. A side benefit was that I got to take home a goodly portion of what we cooked. Our meals ranged from falafels to lasagna (of course, the pasta was homemade). It was great. After a series of 5-6 sessions, I developed the confidence to go out on my own, working from recipes to add to my repertoire. Mary does all sorts of specialized food preparation for those who have more specialty interests. I recommend her highly.

Chef Scott Sunshine
4.7
from 22 reviews
  • 14 years in business
  • 24 hires on Thumbtack
Thumbtack Customer
Verified review

outstanding service, impeccable food, professionals and gracious staff.

Top Pro
Healthy Catering Company
4.9
from 19 reviews
  • 23 years in business
  • 11 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Thumbtack Customer
Verified review

Nasrin and her crew were a pleasure to work with! She went the extra mile with a few of our guest’s dietary requirements/food allergies. All of the food was perfectly prepared and ready when my guests were hungry. That was the best food that we ever had with catering company and be that delicious. I recommend to anyone especially for Middle Eastern type of events. Everyone was well fed and pleasantly pleased with the food and service! Wonderful food from wonderful people!

Have Some Charisma
4.8
from 16 reviews
  • 3 years in business
  • 18 hires on Thumbtack
Nicole N.
Verified review

I wasn't able to work out my circumstances to actually enlist Chef Karizma's services. However Karizma's level of professionalism, diligence, communication, and flexibility is 100% in sync w the type of service I seek. Based on her attention to detail and willingness to make every effort to accommodate my requests despite my short time line - I am certain I will enlist her services in the near future. Her professionalism has set the bar high, and I am hopeful and curious to see if her culinary skills match. If so she is a hidden gem. I plan to enlist her services in March 2016 and update my review. So far 5 star experience and expectations.

Top Pro
  • 2 years in business
  • 12 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Cecilia O.
Verified review

Everything was perfect, from start to finish. The planning stage was handled very politely, with enthusiasm, flair, and patience. The presentation at the event was very clever and attractive. The food was delicious - all our guests raved about the food! The staff was delightful and very hard working. They did a great job cleaning up as well. Everything was wonderfully done from start to finish!

Top Pro
  • 4 years in business
  • 25 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Yolanda P.
Verified review

Inovalon loves having Tacos El Rey. Our associates enjoy the quality of their food as well as the inviting atmosphere.

Top Pro
Chef Nikki S. Mullings
4.9
from 14 reviews
  • 2 years in business
  • 14 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Melanie M.
Verified review

Chef Niki catered my promotion dinner at my firehouse. I appreciated how I was able to view and sign the contract online and pay through a cash app. However, I was surprised to pay in full prior to delivery of service but I admit to being naive about the process of catering an event. Nikki was fair in price. The amount of food was very generous. The food was delish and the guys are still talking about how tasty it was. I only gave four and not five stars due to the late arrival of food. (40mins after agreed time.) Overall, I would recommend Chef Nikki to cater future events.

Chef Rakita
4.1
from 16 reviews
  • 7 years in business
  • 41 hires on Thumbtack
Sharon G.
Verified review

Fabulous. Very personalized service. Excellent flavorful food. Rakita was prompt, self sufficient and pleasant. Portions could have been larger but we were all happy.

K&A Catering
4.7
from 10 reviews
  • 2 years in business
  • 14 hires on Thumbtack
Thmas L.
Verified review

K&A Catering staff was very professional. The food was awesome and the service was great. Thanks to making my event a huge success.

Top Pro
Indian Cooking Classes
5.0
from 7 reviews
  • 9 years in business
  • 7 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Claire M.
Verified review

I thoroughly enjoyed my coooking class with Manjiri! She was fantastic at explaining and also demonstrating the cooking techniques. The recipes were easy to follow and I was able to recreate them at home easily. Best part was that the food was delicious!! My daughter and I love the flavors of Indian food and Manjiri's dishes were comparable to food cooked at a high quality restaurant. I highly recommend her cooking class, you will love her!!

KB&Co. Catering
5.0
from 6 reviews
  • 1 year in business
L Renee F.
Verified review

I was introduced to Keith Brown of KB&CO through a family member, when I put out a PSA looking for a highly professional caterer for several events I had planned in the DC Area. KB&CO met with me within the next day or two, had previous menus available, had tasting samples on site, and was willing to compromise on availability and my budget. He was able to customize each menu I needed, on each budget I had, for each of my events. His service and food were IMPECCABLE. I have referred his business to several clients and I will definitely be doing business again.

Top Pro
New Gourmet Delight
5.0
from 6 reviews
  • 3 years in business
  • 7 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Ashley L.
Verified review

New Gourmet Delight did not disappoint! They came to our community Craft Fair and all our attendees loved the variety of food offered. They worked very quickly to satisfy everyone. We will definitely be inviting them back next year.

Culinary Ace
5.0
from 5 reviews
  • 5 hires on Thumbtack
Dolores V.
Verified review

He was punctual, brought his own ingredients/pots/pans etc, the food was delicious and we enjoyed having him in our home. I have already referred him to a few friends!

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.

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.

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.
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