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The best thing about having your next party catered?

Besides saving you all the food preparation, serving your guests, and replenishing serving platters, a proper catering waitstaff will also be responsible for the final cleanup! And what's that worth?

If you want to enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing everything will be taken care of at an important occasion or event, you may be ready to contact your nearest caterer.

Hiring a caterer is a simple solution for anyone who wants to throw the perfect cocktail party, bar mitzvah, formal dinner or wedding reception.

Besides just preparing the meals, the caterer is an expert at the quantity of dishes required, and with years of experience in transforming even simple appetizers into enticing masterpieces.

As you continue to work closely with your caterer, listen as they present a variety of options ranging from wine and cocktails to main dishes and desserts — which will ultimately help you wow your guests while you blessedly remain within budget.

With the power to make or break your event, finding a good caterer should be one of the most important considerations when you begin to plan and budget for entertaining a crowd large or small.

"Also make sure to ask if a written estimate and contract is provided. If the answer is no, find yourself another caterer..."

How to choose a caterer

To find a local caterer, begin by asking friends or neighbors for recommendations. Check the yellow pages or search the web for reputable caterers in your area. As with any service, it pays to shop around for the best caterer at the right price for your event.

Don't be shy about asking lots of questions. For instance, are they licensed? Do they provide a 'taste test' of food on their menu? Has your caterer worked at the chosen venue before? How will the waitstaff be dressed? Also make sure to ask if a written estimate and contract is provided (and if the answer is no find yourself another caterer.)

Just up ahead, find more related tips on hiring catering services, along with top sites offering searchable directories, along with related tips and advice on complete party planning for your next big family affair or business event ....

More about party catering and caterers around the Web:

Caterer -
- Check out a comprehensive directory of caterers in the U.S. searchable by metro area or state, city or zip code, plus restaurant guide features and food and beverage articles.

How to Find a Wedding Caterer - Helpful tips for the big day from The Knot.

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