This month I want everyone to hold on to your bouquets because I am doing a … wedding! The lucky couple are getting married in Los Angeles,Calif. They are having a midday wedding/lunch and a party that evening at the groom’s second home, so this has turned into a destination wedding. So what I have learned from planning this event (other […]
While working in Nevada last week, I went to the final meeting with the off-premise catering company who was catering my client’s customer appreciation event. This party was being held at a museum, and the caterer was from a chain of locally owned restaurants that recently started an off-premise catering division. Their first big contract […]
Planning a meeting or event in a restaurant has several advantages, especially for small to mid-size groups.
As we are winding down the calendar year, but gearing up for professional and personal holiday gatherings, the same question gets asked over and over: What to serve on a budget? For the month of December I want to take this morsel out of the banqueting kitchen and bring it into your home for the […]
The first area planners tend to trim money from is their food and beverage budget. But how do you save money without sacrificing the experience for your attendees, avoid getting hit by hidden banquet fees and best work with the director of food and beverage and catering manager to create exceptional events? In this PYM […]
I recently did a reception in Atlanta where the past history indicated 450-500 people would be attending the annual customer party. I have done this event for four years in various cities and have kept strict group history. Because convention attendance was up this year, the client and I decided that we would increase the […]
I am going to make this morsel so short and sweet folks aren’t going to believe it. Here is the deal: When we, as planners, give a third party company or facility a budget number, this is what the appropriate vendor needs to do … RESPECT IT! It amazes me when I give someone a […]
Last week I was working for a client, hosting a Friday night reception at a charming wine store owned by a husband and wife. The wine store is in a very sweet and intimate setting that accommodates up to 50 people. During the event, I had a couple of situations happen that I wasn’t so […]
Because of this rough economy, planning events at conference centers with all-inclusive packages has become more popular. There are several reasons why, with the first being the most obvious — the budget. When everything is included in the conference price, planners can understand and effectively budget their costs. Part of the package price includes the culinary experience, but […]
Recently, I went to a party to celebrate the opening of a “new rooftop event space” at an Atlanta office building along with many other event planners and vendors. Atlanta doesn’t have much of a skyline, but that wasn’t what bothered me. What bothered me is that they wanted people to experience their space, atmosphere, […]
Typically, in my Monthly Morsel advice columns, I talk about hotel catering. But for this Best Practices column, I want to go over what you need to think about when booking off-premise venues or restaurants for meal functions. Pre-planning exercise Before we begin, I want you to close your eyes and visualize what the event […]
I was in Indianapolis working an intense food weekend at the NCAA Final Four and I had something interesting occur that rarely happens. What, you ask? I met a chef. Well, that’s not the interesting part because it is only natural that I would be dealing a chef. But this wasn’t any executive chef; it […]
As we round out the year, I know many of you are exhaling a collective sigh of relief that 2009 is nearing its end while simultaneously sucking in your breath in anticipation of 2010. With that being said, I want to close out my 2009 monthly morsels by writing about the Executive Chef at The […]
As the earth is rotating into fall and we are diving in harvest season, I started thinking heavily about farm to table. After all, I was raised in a farming community and I get asked this question all the time. In searching for an answer, I decided to visit Google, and this is what I learned…
One thing that is so important to event planners, but that we tend to glaze over, is the timing of an event. When doing an event timeline, we need to take into consideration our guests and how this timeline will affect them and their experience. Let me give an extreme example of what can go […]
This month I am going to talk about décor — which requires a different form of taste than what I usually discuss. This one we experience with our eyes, not our mouths. Last month I was with a friend in a restaurant, and the décor of the restaurant was not even close to what the […]
This holiday season, we are all getting slammed by the recession, so I would like to give you some ideas on how to save some money on catering, whether you are doing a family or office gathering. I wanted to present some options you may not have considered before. If some of these ideas seem […]
This, my dear readers, will probably be one of my shorter morsels. And yet, it may save you the most time, if hotel catering managers heed my advice…
There are times in life when I feel I have the sweetest job on earth. This past week was one of those times — literally and figuratively.
Here is a situation that a lot of us have the power to do something about but don’t: service charges on F&B.
Hi, everyone, I was fortunate enough to go out of the country to do what? Nothing but eat. Talk about a dream assignment. But, I have to say it is a lot harder than it looks.
Attention Chefs and Catering Managers: This note is to you fine folks in culinary cyberland.
As we are rounding out the year, here is my wish list for 2008:
Buffet burners from Pineapple Hospitality replace traditional sterno warmers for chafing dishes, are re-usable and have an adjustable temperature setting. Properties that have made the switch include the MCM Grande in Odessa, Texas, and the Chateau on the Lake Resort in Branson, Mo.
Working an event recently, I did my usual schtick and said I wanted to do the bar inventory by counting beer caps. The property said they would make these arrangements … and then didn’t. What did they do? They served the beer in cans instead of bottles. What didn’t I like about this? A lot […]
Folks, there is such a thing as too much garlic. I know, hard to believe for you garlic lovers out there, but it is true in a banqueting situation.
Atlanta-based Affairs to Remember Caterers celebrated its 30th birthday with the opening of a new Midtown West facility, the burial of a time capsule, and predictions for the catering and events industry 30 years from now:
Don’t automatically assume you have to be held captive at hotels for evening events. Let’s face it, staying at hotels for evening functions isn’t cheap.