The Best Caterers in Howard County MD Are the Ones Proven Safe To Hire
Caterers in Howard County MD bearing The Prime Buyer's Report TOP 10 symbol are those catering companies that have exceeded the minimum Maryland state regulatory standard. They are the ones proven by our independent research to have passed the TOP 10 requirements for value and reliability, carry liability insurance as protection for you the client, and for whom our staff has called previous clients to verify high satisfaction with them for catering in Howard County MD, including event caterers, buffet caterers, wedding caterers, and corporate caterers.
Updated September 11, 2017
The Best Caterers in Howard County MD Are the Ones Proven Safe To Hire
Catering is most commonly regulated at the city or county level, but the state of Maryland does make available a statewide license for catering companies in Howard County MD but which still requires the caterer to have already met any regulation local to the city they are in.
But while regulation usually has food safety as its main concern, (with varying degrees of actual enforcement of cleanliness) the state license for caterers is no guarantee that any particular catering company in Howard County MD is competent in catering, is doing business honestly, delivering value, or satisfying customers.
This makes it all the more significant that all caterers bearing The Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have been evaluated by our research staff, and have had to pass all the requirements for Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 status such as survey phone calls to previous clients to verify high satisfaction with their catering services, clean complaint record, verified license, verified worker's comp and liability insurance, only employees legal to work in the U.S., and more.
Good Caterers in Howard County MD Perform Numerous Services
The right caterers in Howard County MD can tailor their services to improve your party or event. Some of the caterers in Howard County provide fine catering for a full spectrum of events, from black tie galas, to luaus, to Western hoedowns. Most caterers also serve the standards, such as pasta feeds, breakfasts, luncheons, family-style gatherings, harvest parties, Texas BBQs, meetings, picnics, parties, or romantic dinners for two. Larger catering companies in Howard County MD might even host location shoots, weddings, corporate events, banquets, openings, reunions, fundraisers, and might even perform as full fledged event planners in Howard County MD.
Often prepared by personal chefs, the food served by local caterers in Howard County MD can be delivered, boxed and ready-to-heat or cooked on-site. If you'd like more involved catering services than the usual buffet, some local caterers coordinate and host elegant sit down meals, complete with hors d'oeuvres, entrees, dessert, servers, five star rated chefs on site, and custom designed menus. Many of these upscale caterers even have liquor licenses, so they can provide full bars and bartenders.
The Best Caterers of Howard County MD Can Create a Personalized Menu
The caterers in Howard County MD run the gamut in terms of tasty spreads they can prepare. As a buffet or individual platters, some of the different foods served by caterers include chicken, ribs, hand-made sausage, pulled pork, salads, steaks, turkey dinners, baked goods, tri-tip, salmon, and lamb. The catering companies may also provide oysters, vegetables, hot dogs and hamburgers, brisket, ravioli, prime rib, and pork cushions.
Some caterers can accommodate different culinary specialties at your request, such as Italian-Mediterranean cuisine, Chinese cuisine, Indian cuisine, BBQ, deli platters, or even special diets. Food can generally be served in hot or cold buffet style, or as pre-arranged party trays. In addition to the array of foods, full service caterers might furnish tables, chairs, umbrellas, or canopies if needed.
Some Caterers in Howard County MD Are Better Than Others
The Prime Buyer's Report lists these catering services in Howard County MD: . Other catering companies in Howard County MD that might still be in business include: .
Questions To ask Caterers in Howard County MD
Ask these questions of caterers in Howard County MD about their expertise, specialities, and procedures:
Step 1: Describe The Catering Services Desired
Explain the basic elements you need from the caterers. This includes a guest count, choice of food and any other goodies you've already thought of. The caterers can help you brainstorm.
Step 2: Answer Questions of the Caterers & Take Notes
After your brief description of the desired catering serivces, the caterers should give you input on feasibility, suggested enhancements and a rough estimate for the catering services. Pay attention to the manner in which the catering companies do this. If they just hand you a flyer and move on, the presence of the caterers at your event might be just as detached. So try and draw the potential caterers out with some questions about qualifications and experience in providing catering services. It might help to use the list below as a basis for your inquiries to local catering companies in Howard County MD.
How long have the caterers been providing catering services in Howard County MD?
How many catering jobs like yours have they done, i.e. wedding catering vs event catering vs corporate catering, etc.?
Do the caterers specialize in the theme or cuisine you have in mind? Will the caterers give you names and numbers of previous clients as references you can check? (All caterers in Howard County MD bearing the Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had client references called by our research staff so you don't have to.)
Do the caterers have a liquor license?
Are any city or county permits required for your event? If so, who is responsible for getting them, you or the catering company? If the catering company, is that cost included in their quoted price?
Do the caterers provide any furniture or themed props?Do the caterers have liability insurance as protection for you? (All caterers in Howard County MD bearing the Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had proof of insurance verified by our research staff so you don't have to.)
Do the caterers set up and/or clean-up?
What is the cancellation policy of the catering companies?
What is the required deposit for the catering services?
Will the caterers provide a detailed written estimate? This is important because cheap caterers in Howard County may not actually be less expensive but rather using cheaper food or less staff than another one. A detailed estimate will allow you to make exact comparisons.
Will the caterers provide a written contract?
How do the caterers determine costs?Once the catering company has a detailed explanation of your event, ask the caterer what potential issues might arise that could change the cost they've quoted, and if any, by how much?
How well do the caterers know the staff that will be working your event? Are they well-known employees or do they hire temporary laborers? Can the caterer prove that all the workers sent to your property are legally allowed to work in the U.S.? (All caterers in Howard County MD bearing The Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already signed an agreement to hire only documented workers.)
Once you've chosen the best caterers in Howard County MD for your particular needs, make sure they have either the statewide license from the state of Maryland or one from your city specifically. (All caterers in Howard County MD bearing The Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had their state or city license verified by our research staff so you don't have to.)
Now that you're completely familiar with your caterers business practices and qualifications, you can comfortably set a date and sign a contract for the catering services in Howard County. Solidify your preferences and ask the caterers to provide a written and signed pricing, quality, and warranty agreement for all desired catering services. The best catering companies in Howard County MD should be happy to do this. But don't let price be the only consideration. Cheap caterers in Howard County MD usually aren't the best ones. And if the estimate from one catering company is so much less than others, there may be reason for concern.
Resources About Caterers in Howard County MD
Regulatory Bodies & Trade Associations Relevant to Caterers in Howard County MD
ACEP Association of Catering and Event Professionals www.acep.com
American Culinary Federation www.acfchefs.org
American Culinary Federation - Greater Baltimore Chapter www.greaterbaltimoreacf.com
BBB Better Business Bureau www.bbb.com
CCFMA Convenience Caterers & Food Manufacturers Association www.mobilecaterers.com
Maryland Licensing & Regulation www.marylandtaxes.com
ICA International Caterers Association www.icacater.org
ICCA International Corporate Chefs Association www.iccachefs.com
NACE National Association of Catering Executives www.nace.net
Restaurant Association of Maryland www.marylandrestaurants.com
USPCA United States Personal Chef Association /www.uspca.com
Media Related to Caterering in Howard County MD
Cater Source Journal
Special Events Magazine
21797, 21794, 21765, 21738, 21737, 21723, 21150, 21104, 21163, 21075, 21041, 21036, 21029, 20794-2, 21046, 21045, 21044, 21043, 21042, 20777, 20763, 20759 and 20701
The Prime Buyer's Report provides information for the TOP 10 Catering in Howard County MD within the following cities.
Columbia, Elkridge, Ellicott City, North Laurel, Savage-Guilford, Savage, Clarksville, Dayton, Fulton, Highland, Ilchester, Lisbon, Scaggsville, West Friendship and Woodstock