Catering In the
time of covid
As we round out on a year of COVID-19 being an intense part of our lives, I wanted to take a look back at the changes we’ve made to our services as we work our way towards reopening weddings and events in 2021.
We initially reopened for small scale events in the middle of May 2020 – with a small backyard wedding in Louisville. An event that size didn’t require much finagling, it was all people from within the same household, but we still tried to be cognizant of restrictions and controls. It was our first full shift in a mask and two of us went through almost 100 pairs of gloves just to be safe. Larger in-venue events began later that summer, with a July wedding at The Factory 12 Event Loft first on the docket. This service was one of our live action pasta bars – which came at an advantage. While a self-serve buffet does have inherent risks – when you are sautéing every plate on site, the heat of the sauté pan kills any potential disease – so the food was safe.
Right around this time is when we started really planning our fall weddings – and we were faced with the decision of offering weddings as a served buffet or plated meal. Personally, I have never enjoyed the concept of a served buffet. It feels too much like a school cafeteria – and takes too long to get people through the line, so we made the decision to offer a complimentary upgrade to all of our clients to serve a plated meal. This was daunting – we were traditionally buffet caterers who occasionally offered plated meals, but it required a lot of planning. We were suddenly faced with the prospect of doing dozens of plated meals in a few weeks – including days with three or four going on at the same time. We needed to invest in new equipment, and train our staff on new processes. We purchased electric warming boxes so we could begin the process of plating a few minutes before service would begin and still serve hot food. We went through several versions of the best way to get the plates to the dining room before finding the most efficient. It was a lot of work, but we became better, more effective caterers in the process. I can now say we can serve a 100 person plated service in less than 10 minutes – and we’ve lowered the upgrade price to plated on our standard menu. Honestly, at this point, we prefer them.
Venue: The Wilds Wedding and Event Venue