Ask.meta.angieslist: Caterers in Chicago
May 24, 2011 10:03 AM   Subscribe

Chicago caterer? Nope, not for a wedding. Just a cocktail party not held at home. I've tried looking through the google (and reading the wedding boards anyway), but seriously, it's way too much information with no quality filter. Have you hired a local (to Chicago) caterer for a small event in the last year or so that you would recommend?

We're talking about an extended family guest list of 150-200 adults only. Passed or plated finger foods only, including sweets. Mixed foods--some vegetarian and some not--but we're not trying to impress anyone, just trying to give them something to nibble on while they drink cocktails and catch up with one another in a rented hall, for 3-4 hours on a weekend. Last time we did this was ten years ago in DuPage county, but this will be in the city limits, so Chicago caterers only.

Unfortunately, we don't have a budget yet because we don't even know what the price ranges are. Hall rental is looking like $2k and it seems reasonable to us that food should not exceed the hall rental, but maybe we're totally off-base with that.
posted by crush-onastick to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
A friend puts on an annual fundraiser and hires Hel's Kitchen for food pretty close to what you want. They're going to cater our wedding too, but that's a few months away.
posted by hydrophonic at 10:15 AM on May 24, 2011


Maurizio Malfeo catered a friend's 50-guest dinner party and my 120-guest wedding. He's fantastic, really easy to work with, makes delicious food, and is really great about anticipating (and solving) logistical issues--both food-related logistics and general event-planning issues.
posted by Meg_Murry at 10:31 AM on May 24, 2011


City Provisions is pretty good. And Lula Cafe caters, if that's of interest.
posted by me3dia at 10:53 AM on May 24, 2011


I can reccomend Bespoke Cuisine on W Randolph. I've been to one of their "cooking class events," and to several parties they've done like the one you describe. Great stuff!
posted by OneMonkeysUncle at 12:17 PM on May 24, 2011


Seconding City Provisions.

I have to disagree with Bespoke Cuisine. I felt that the "instructors" of the class that my wife and I attended were quite condescending. The food wasn't that great either.
posted by photovox at 12:24 PM on May 24, 2011


A friend just had a 60-person wedding that was catered by Froggy's. The food was great and the staff was really nice to work with (my wife and I ended up being the de facto wedding coordinators and so we were talking to the catering staff all night).

A note: part of the reason the couple choose that particular caterer was that the wedding venue had a short list of recommended caterers. I think that it contributed to the evening going so well that the Froggy's staff were very familiar with the venue. So you might see if the hall you've rented has any recommendations of caterers they've worked with.
posted by fuzzygerdes at 12:35 PM on May 24, 2011


Cafe BabaReba caters. Many restaurants do too.
posted by stormpooper at 12:46 PM on May 24, 2011


A couple of friends of mine own Artfully Delicious. I've had their food and it is fantastic. I'm not certain what they charge, but they would be someone to talk to. They are fully omnivorous, but specialize in vegan food. (I've had meat they cooked and it was amazing).

Good luck! Let us know what you go with!
posted by bibliogrrl at 4:15 PM on May 24, 2011


We booked FIG Catering for our Chicago-area wedding, and they've been a delight to work with. They do cooking classes, in-home catering, and small events, but I think they cap event catering at 150 people.
posted by booknerd at 8:45 AM on May 25, 2011


Okay, thanks for the leads! I'll definitely report back.
posted by crush-onastick at 8:55 AM on May 26, 2011


We called all the suggestions and had good conversations with Artfully Delicious, City Provisions and FIG. In the end, Hel's had the best options for our budget and availability on our date, so I'm marking them best. If the thread is still open after the event, I'll update then.
posted by crush-onastick at 1:51 PM on August 3, 2011


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