What do you pay an amateur caterer?
June 4, 2007 11:24 AM Subscribe
How do I know how much to charge for an amateur catering gig I've just been offered? The potential client wants me to call him with an estimate, but I neither am a caterer nor have I ever hired one, so I really have no context at all.
posted by mostlymartha to work & money (14 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
The dear boy and I have been going to a certain winery in Sonoma for about two years and are very friendly with some of the employees. Some months ago, after hearing me talk about all the foods I like to pair their wines with, one of employees jokingly said that I shouldn't talk about yummy food unless they got to taste it. After bantering about since then, I finally made up a picnic (white bean and goat cheese puree with crudite and bruschetta, skewers of melon, shrimp, and prosciutto, little biscuits with herb roasted pork tenderloin and fig/mustard compote, and strawberry buttermilk panna cotta) and took it up to the tasting room.
We had a super time, and I clearly impressed the pants off them. Yesterday, we went back to the winery for an event, and another employee (who didn't actually taste my food, just heard about it and saw the pictures) said that he and his wife are having a sort of casual, neighborhood party in late June and would I like to cater it with food to pair with wine from the winery?
I made a cool, professional face and said I'd give it some thought, but honestly, I'm flummoxed. I've never cooked for that many people before, but I'm almost certain I can handle it. It's the question of an estimate where I don't even know where to start.
How to I find out what a decent price is to provide party style food for 25 people in the SF Bay Area?
I obviously won't have a serving staff or anything
I will probably need to purchase some large serving pieces
It's not practical for me to provide real plates, cutlery, etc. (but I can do paper/plastic if it suits them)
Bonus question: How do I tactfully ask if him if he'd want me to be visible and chatty at said party whilst also minding the food or if he'd prefer if I disappear?