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How much to pay for menu creation.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

How much should I pay a chef to help me develop my catering menu? Do I treat it as an hourly, or as a fee (and think of him as a consultant)?

 

Specifically, I offer 4-course meals. My clients have about 5 choices for each course (kind of like a restaurant menu). I would like to create 2 of these menus (a lower and a higher tier menu). I would need the chef to create menus that are consistent with my cuisine (American / French), and also provide recipes for each item.

 

thanks!

post #2 of 6

Perhaps I'm misunderstanding the situation.

 

You own a catering business. You are the primary cook for the business. Correct?

 

May I inquire as to why you do not develop your own menu from what you cook?

 

What do you hope to accomplish by having someone unfamiliar with your cooking, clients, and your business create something that is such a strong part of your business?

 

If you explore this avenue further, I'm fairly certain you will find there is no adequate option to a fee based consultant and that will probably run into, um, a high four to five figure fee.

 

Of course, you might find someone to do it for less, but I certainly would not stake the reputation of my business on someone who is willing to.

 

TAWTHDIK

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #3 of 6

Are you the planner or the actual caterer??? If you are only the planner, the caterer should provide the choices of menu not you. Why not you? Because you wont be preparing it, he or she will. There should be no charge for this on the caterers part.

At least this is the way we always dealt with planners.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #4 of 6

 

Quote:
I would need the chef to create menus that are consistent with my cuisine (American / French)

 

I am confused as to how you can have a cuisine without having a menu!

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #5 of 6

Do you need help developing a menu that is easy to calculate food cost and profit? Do you just need someone to format your menu into a flyer or brochure?

 

Are you requesting an executive chef design your menu and hand you an owner's manual with recipies, how-to's and shopping lists?

 

Here is some advice:

 

1. Study what other catering outfits publish on their websites for some menu inspiration.

2. Sit down with your library of cookbooks, and just inspire yourself with the images and concepts.

3. WRITE DOWN what comes to you. What you feel would "work" for standard course elements - What you would want people to pick from as standard options?

 

4. Test all the items, nail-down your actual food/production/volume costs for each item. It takes time. You can't "wing it" and expect to make any money.

 

5. Come back and ask for a peer review/input/guidance/help/verification that your (YOUR) menu is well rounded, well balanced and well designed.

 

6. Go out and make some money. : )

Do or Do not - There is no Try. - Yoda
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Do or Do not - There is no Try. - Yoda
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post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 

Love it! Thanks Trooper.

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