Throw A Great Party Without Spending A Fortune

If you are planning a party, you already know that food can be one of your biggest expenses. However, you can take several steps to cut your party food costs. It is not necessary to purchase expensive appetizers and beverages to throw a great party. A little imagination and effort can make your party a memorable occasion.

Here are some ideas and suggestions to help you save money on food when throwing your next party:

Have a potluck

A potluck is certainly cheaper than hiring a caterer and you will save a lot of time and money by having your guests prepare a dish to share with others. Potluck is fun and you will surely end up with an interesting assortment of foods. To make things simpler, include a suggestion as to what type of dish you would like your guests to bring such as a dessert, vegetable, or salad.

Finger foods are fun

Small sandwiches, chips, dips, and vegetable trays are relatively inexpensive and you won’t need to bother with place settings and bringing out your best china. Simply supply napkins and small paper plates and allow your guests to serve themselves from an assortment of bite size goodies.

Back to basics

Fruit and cheese are excellent choices for casual party foods that don’t require fancy place settings or dishes. Buy fresh fruit in season when you are likely to find certain varieties on sale and fill your table will a variety of cheeses, crackers, and perhaps olives and nuts.

Go Italian

If your party will be a dinner party where fingers foods are not appropriate, you can try spaghetti with garlic bread and salad, or you could find a good deal on pizza that you can have delivered. You will save time and it is quite easy to find a bargain on different types of pizza.

Thrifty Thirst Quenchers

For party beverages, two-liter soft drinks and bottled water are inexpensive and very easy to serve. Provide ice and cups and allow your guests to serve themselves. Tea and coffee are cheap as is lemonade that you make fresh or from concentrate.

Your party does not have to cost a lot of money to be a huge success. Look for sales on the foods and beverages you choose and plan ahead so you will have time to shop around be fore you buy.

A Catering Directory Helps You Find Local Caterers

Catering is one service where you are likely to prefer a local supplier. Very few persons would want to bring a caterer from some other country and risk a party disaster. Corporate parties might go for specialized and reputed catering organizations headquartered elsewhere. Even they might often find it necessary to go for local caterers when time is short.

Catering directories generally focus on the final consumers, listing vendors by food categories such as beverages, chocolate fountain, fruit, juice, etc; and by supplier categories like food vendors, caterers, mobile vendors, party organizers, restaurants, party shops, etc. There might also be sections on Health & Safety and Catering Tips.

Another catering directory might arrange vendors by such categories as caterers, event venues, entertainment, photography, transportation, wedding, event planners, florists, etc.

All are likely to provide the option to narrow down the lists to locations you select, such as a city or area.

Some might collect information such as number of guests, event type, services required (such as food, servers, liquor, chocolate fountain, decorations, tables/chairs, tents, etc), date and time, location and so on, and give you a quote based on your requirements.

Caterers might even help you select a menu depending on your budget per person or an event venue or other related matters. Services offered could include sit-in, food station and buffet type serving options, and also clean-ups, drop offs, beverages only service, etc.

Detailed Catering Directory Categories

A brief look at some detailed catering directory categories would help you understand what you could expect. A selection is listed below:

Corporate catering

Personal Chefs

Banquet Halls



Live Music/Bands



Wedding Planners

Wedding Financing

Equipment Hire

Catering Directories Are Not Only for Party Hosts

Another kind of catering directory focuses on the requirements of caterers by listing suppliers of catering requirements. The following sample list provides a look at the kind of requirements caterers typically have:

Refrigeration: Chilled display cabinets, Ice makers,…

Beverages: Coffee Equipment, Beverage Jugs,…

Bar supplies: Spirit measures, Bottle openers, Blenders,…

Cookware: Pots & Pans, Cooks Knives, Chefs Clothing,…

Tableware: Cutlery, Napkins, Tablemats,…

Furniture: Bar stools, Tables, Outdoor furniture,…

Kitchen planning: Assessing requirements, design, advice,…

Regional Directories

You can find catering services providers near you either through regional directories, such as Chicago Caterer directories, or through national directories that lists caterers by cities and areas. Local catering can be arranged quickly and is ideal when you are short of time. For domestic parties, local catering would be the better option in most cases.

A local catering directory like a Chicago catering directory might list such local resources as banquet halls, buffet services, corporate party organizers, and so on.


Catering directories generally focus on the consumers of catering services, listing different types of caterers by their services or locations. Thus, you could find a wedding organizer in or near your town, or a restaurant that offers Chinese dishes in city you plan to visit.

Other catering directories focus on the caterers, helping them find cookware, tableware, furniture, refrigeration equipment, and so on. Some might offer kitchen planning and design services and other kinds of consultancy services.

This article looked at the kinds of information you could expect to find in a catering directory.

The Best Ways To Discover The Right Corporate Caterers For An Upcoming Business Event

Food is a personal matter even when it is prepared on a large scale as is often the case with office and boardroom lunches in Sydney . You would do well to make sure that the food in your next corporate engagement is top-notch by finding the ideal food catering company ahead of time.

So how do you go about finding the right corporate caterer?

If you are in the market for a corporate catering service, one of the most important things to do is to locate a caterer who will deal with you on your terms, not theirs. Your catering service should listen and ask concerns about the type, amount, and arrangement of food that you want. They ought to likewise be willing to talk about how to satisfy your requirements best while staying within your spending plan. If you require catering for a group of 50 people in the office and your caterer begins talking about caviar and champagne, hang up the phone.

What to look out for in a corporate catering service?

Your caterer must be more interested in you and in what you require instead of in pushing what they want to sell. The bottom line is, your catering company need to deal with you from the first day to supply the kind of food you need most effectively. If at any point, you sense otherwise, then you would best take your needs somewhere else.

In addition to paying attention to precisely what you require, corporate caterers in Sydney must also be willing to do their best to accommodate your requirements. While not all companies will have the ability to handle all scenarios, a good caterer needs to be receptive to hearing if you need a specific product or are dealing with one particular dietary constraint. You might, for example, require a kosher, vegetarian, or gluten-free item for any occasion. Alternatively, you might need to have a copy of the nutrition or component details on hand for specific clients.

Even on the corporate scale, food is a personal thing. Your catering service ought to be willing to meet the individual specifications that you set out. If they are unreceptive to these discussions, get them out of there! If they can’t accommodate something you need, keep them on file for future events and have them advise another company that would much better fit your needs.

Serving quality food that’s right for your guests is a guaranteed method to display your service in an excellent light. Start that procedure off right by discovering caterers who are bought providing you with the food and the service you need.

Easy Party Food Planning

Parties are fun events we all look forward to attending. If you’re hosting the party, it’s easy to become overwhelmed with all the preparations to be made. Invitations, table settings, decorations and rounding up extra glassware all take time. Then there’s the party food planning, shopping and cooking. Unless you’re hosting a pot luck, a party is a lot of work! However, with a little organization, you can make short work of your menu and party food planning. Here are some fail-safe tips to make your party a success.

If your guest list is large, a buffet style party is the way to go. All the dishes are laid out and your guests help themselves. If you’re just having a few friends in, it’s not much work to set the dining table for a sit-down dinner and it is a bit more elegant.

Easy party food planning begins with careful menu selections. One main entree and perhaps two hot side dishes should be the most you need to deal with on the day of the party. Remember, some dishes taste better when cooked the day before, allowing the flavors to marry.

As a main entree, consider casserole style dishes like lasagna or manicotti for casual gatherings. Fancier dishes, like Beef Bourguignon, definitely improve in taste when prepared a day or two before you plan to serve. The classic German Sauerbraten owes its fantastic taste to four days of marinating. You then pop the roast in the oven the day of your party with little effort. You just make the gravy when the meat’s done. So think do-ahead when planning party food for your menu.

For your hot side dishes, a rice pilaf would go well with the Bourguignon and can be done on the morning of your party and warmed just before serving. For the Sauerbraten, roast potato wedges in the same pan. Gingered carrots in orange sauce is an easy dish, as are creamed baby onions with nutmeg. These elegant vegetable dishes are also good do-aheads as the flavor improves when allowed to sit overnight in the frig.

A big green salad is always welcome. Wash the greens in the morning. Keeping leaves separated from one another, layer them on paper towels in a large rectangular plastic container. In another bowl, put your tomato wedges, onions and fresh or dried salad seasonings. Keep other salad veggies, like mushrooms, olives and cucumbers in separate containers. When you’re ready to assemble the salad, your greens will be nice and crisp. The salad goes together in five minutes.

Make your menu work for you! You can see that careful party food planning is the key to assuring a sumptuous meal for your guests without frantic last-minute preparations.