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Why You Should Talk about Business Over Barbecue

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Business talks can be nervous affairs, especially for new partners or people new to the business world in general. Even if they're seasoned veterans, a big business deal can make just about anyone a bit anxious, and it's not always easy to make people feel at ease. So how do you give people some peace of mind and still move the meeting forward? Believe it or not, barbecue may be the answer.

Doing just about anything on an empty stomach is a bad idea, so there's a certain automatic benefit in simply making sure that people are well fed, but there's more to it than that. Barbecue makes for an easygoing, even jovial atmosphere, especially since it's generally enjoyed at sports events, summer parties, family reunions, and other social gatherings. Barbecue isn't imposing or overly formal, and it can make for a good opportunity to break the ice and get to know people. That makes it a bit easier for people to overlook the pressures of business discussions, and it can give you the chance to establish a relationship and rapport that goes beyond numbers and graphs.

Yes, it's basically impossible to eat barbecue without making at least a little bit of a mess, and that may seem a bit off-putting at first, but it can actually be helpful. This can humanize people and turn the general mood of a business talk into a more amicable and less-stressful occasion. That can make it easier to talk openly and candidly with each other, which can in turn make the business discussion a bit more productive. So, the next time you're ready to talk business, make sure that you bring some barbecue to go with it.

How to Start a Catering Business

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Food lovers sometimes want to turn their passion into a business, and doing what you love is certainly something that many people find aspirational. Of course, there's more to starting a catering business than just knowing how to make delicious food.

Find Your Focus

There are a lot of different style and types of food in the world, and any of those can make for an excellent catering business, but you won't be able to do all of them well, and doing too much will make things confusing, unfocused, and overly complicated. Find the kind of food that you both make well and love to make, and you'll be able to find your niche. That's where you should focus your efforts.

Make the Menu

Every good catering company needs a good menu. Make sure to have a decent variety of selections, but it shouldn't be overstuffed, and you should make sure that you can readily source all of the ingredients that you'll need. Consider having vegetarian or vegan options available, and be sure that you can appeal to a variety of palates and preferences.

Stock Your Kitchen

This isn't just ingredients. You'll need a well-equipped commercial kitchen, and you'll have to make sure that you have adequate space. Setting up the flow of your kitchen is very important for productivity and to reduce the stress of everyone stepping all over each other, which will quickly turn into a major hassle. You'll also need a delivery vehicle and equipment for setting up on-site.

Do the Paperwork

All of the applicable permits and licenses must be in order before you can ever offer anything. This really can't be stressed enough. You can't move forward without your documentation being properly processed.

Guidelines for Calculating How Much Food to Have Catered

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When you're determining how much food you should have catered to your event, there are a few different factors to consider. First, examine any dietary requirements you food may need to accommodate. If you have five people who are vegetarians, it's important that you order a small portion of vegetarian foods for your event. You will then need to count the number of people who will be attending your event, and compare this number to the length of your event.

If you plan to have an event that is six hours long, you will want to consider a main meal with appetizers available throughout the entire event. When estimating the amount of food needed, always stay on the safe side with more rather than less. Remember that the longer someone stays, the more they will consume.

If your event consists mainly of appetizers, plan on at least 10-15 pieces per person. If you're planning a dinner will appetizers served before, plan for 3-5 each person.

You'll want to assume that each person will drink one cup each hour. Plan according to this.

People will want to eat most during dinner. The main course should be anywhere from 5-7 oz. while the breakfast and lunch meals can be 4-5 oz.

Top Italian Dishes to Serve at Your Event

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There is nothing quite like a good Italian dish. The combination of flavors, textures, and spices makes Italian cuisine a crowd-pleaser at any event. If you’re considering serving Italian to the guests at your next function, there are many entrees, appetizers, and desserts to choose from. While your selection should be based on your taste and style, there are a few tried and true favorites.

  • Pasta dishes. You can’t have Italian food without pasta. When catering an event, consider having a pasta bar. At these ready-to-make stations, a chef can prepare the dish to order. Each of your guests will enjoy customizing their entrée with different sauces, meats, pastas, and cheeses.
  • Breadsticks. No matter what the main course is, you can’t forget the bread. Breadsticks are a staple to any good Italian meal. Don’t forget to serve them with various dipping sauces!
  • Chicken parmesan. A perfectly cooked chicken cutlet, breaded, crispy, and topped with delicious marinara—what could be better? Topping it with parmesan cheese! This Italian comfort food is the perfect entrée for any catered meal. Whether you serve it alongside fettucine or mashed potatoes, you’re sure to have some happy guests.
  • Desserts. It would be a crime to serve Italian cuisine without their famous desserts! Consider serving miniature versions of panna cotta, tiramisu, and cannoli. This allows each one of your guests to try each of the delicacies without overindulging.

No matter which Italian dishes you choose for your menu, it’s sure to be memorable!

Why Italian Cuisine Is a Popular Catering Choice

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Trying to decide on cuisine for your next event? Italian food is an excellent choice! With many different delicious options, it’s easy for each one of your guests to find something that they love. Besides the various entrees, there are a number of reasons why you should serve Italian food for your next catered event.

  • It’s easy to customize your dish. One of the hardest tasks as a host is choosing a menu that suits the many different tastes of your guests. If you choose to serve pasta, it’s easy for your guests to select which pasta, sauce, and toppings they want—making it simple for everyone to enjoy their meal.
  • There are many finger food or extravagant meal options. No matter what your next event is, there’s an Italian cuisine to match it. If you are looking for something a bit more casual, consider serving Italian panini or breadsticks. For a more formal event, choose chicken marsala or gnocchi. The possibilities are endless!
  • Italian cuisine includes more than just entrees and appetizers. You can serve Italian beverages and desserts as well. Italian sodas are a popular choice for party guests as it allows them to try different flavors and create new combinations. Desserts such as tiramisu, panna cotta, and cannoli tie in perfectly with the Italian theme and are positively delicious.

Make all of your guests happy by choosing Italian fare for your next event!

3 Most Popular Catering Events

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When it comes to event planning, the last thing you want to worry about is food preparation. Having the meal for your event catered can help to relieve at least part of your stress. A high-quality catering company will be able to plan an amazing menu and orchestrate the meal beautifully. Look for a company that has experience catering to a wide variety of venues and events so that you know they'll meet your needs. Any company you consider should have experience in the 3 most popular catered events. Let’s take a look at what they are.

Wedding receptions – Virtually every wedding reception is catered. While some venues do provide food services, many others don’t and require you to find a caterer to provide the meal.

Conferences – When employees come together for conferences or corporate meetings, it’s very likely that at least one meal during the event is catered. More often than not, there will be more than one catered meal, especially if it's a multi-day event.

Parties – Whether it's for a birthday, retirement, or other important life event, these events bring people together to celebrate. For this reason, they are also frequently catered.

Do you have one of these important events coming up? Be sure to choose a caterer who can exceed all your needs and expectations.


Learn Buffet Feng Shui

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Going Down the Table

The most important arrangement point for you to consider is how to keep the diners from having to reach around each other to get everything they need. That means that, while your plates and bowls need to be at the beginning so the diners have something to fill, the utensils should be at the end. That way the diners know which utensils they need, and they won’t have to hold on to the utensils down the whole row.

Creating Rows

If you have a short, wide table and have a few rows of food, the best thing to do is to vary the height of the dishes so that the rows on the inside are higher than the ones on the outside. That way when the diners are reaching into the food, they’ll be less likely to have their sleeves drag in the front dishes or worse, burn themselves on the hotter ones. If you don’t have any tall dishes, you can always stack books or whatever else you have underneath the dishes, and then cover those stacks with your table linens.

When Opposites Attract: Catering for Two

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  • Hiring a caterer for two is an excellent way to make a date even more special. You’ll have the opportunity to choose your cuisine and opt for service if you’d like. It’s all of the aspects of a classy restaurant that you love without having to deal with crowds and reservations.
  • The food choices are endless. Unlike a restaurant, you aren’t limited to what’s on the menu. With a caterer, you can make requests, allow the chef to whip up something special, or try something new.
  • It’s not as expensive as you think. Many hesitate to hire a caterer for a special date simply because they are afraid of the cost. In reality, hiring a caterer may be less expensive than a dinner at a nice restaurant. Depending on the food that you choose and whether or not you opt to have servers, you may find it quite economical.

Try something new for your next date night. Instead of the traditional dinner and a movie, consider hiring a professional to cater a special meal.

5 Summer Appetizers for Your Next Event

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Planning an event can be exciting and exhausting if you're doing it the right way. One of the easiest things to get caught up in is deciding which items to serve during your event. While you can offer a full-course meal if you'd like, summer events are usually more casual get-togethers. Casual events require appetizers and drinks. With long lists of appetizers all around the internet, it's difficult to narrow them down to just a few. Here are 5 awesome summer appetizers you should consider for your next event: Read the rest of this entry »

Unique Hors D’oeuvres to Serve

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Whether you are planning a wedding, a celebratory brunch, a work lunch, or other event, the food is an important consideration. Whether you want the meal to be the center of attention or a classy addition that complements the event, taste and presentation matter. Read on to learn about some catering tips and unique hors d’oeuvres that will set your event apart from the rest. Read the rest of this entry »