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Forgive me but you sound like you've never taken on anything like this before in your life.
Further, how can you expect to get accurate advice when you offered basically no facts about the event,the most important being the number of people attending?
Besides the late great Pete's posts, as our own wise and wonderful Mimi
has suggested, there is a wealth of posts on this site about that very subject. A simple search in the archives for catering pricing will return many useful discussions on it.
I'm sure he's not the only one who knows how to figure that out.

Why not ask them a few questions?

How many people are going to be at the party?

Are you going to have it completed before you get there?

Are you going to have to set anything up? Or are you just bringing your product?

I wouldn't worry about how much you charge, worry about how tasty your product is, and how well its organized.

if this is your first time doing something like this, go in there with your product complete, and be confident everyone is going to enjoy your food.

The quality of your product and the value it provides for your customer is what will decide what its worth for them to pay.

They'll ask you how much you want for your services, and I'd suggest basing your profit off the perceived value. If they didn't really eat it and its not that great, i'd ask for the price you paid for the food, and work on your recipes.

If they loved it and its all gone, charge 2x - 4x what you paid, because you won't seem greedy for doing so, especially if they loved it, it'll be worth it for them to accommodate your services.

I hope i've helped a little bit. Please feel free to ask questions. I currently run a small catering business.
 

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Alex.
By the time you walk into the venue for an event the quotes have been accepted and the contract is signed and the check has cleared the bank.
No way would I refund one dime unless there was some sort of disaster concerning my services.
Plus I require all the money up front ... half when the contract is signed and the rest 2 weeks before the date.

Do you really believe that the financials are NBD?
Unless I make a nice profit I won't accept a job and I would not accept a job unless my food and service are up to par.
To run this type of biz without a solid knowledge of how and why we figure the quote is just begging for failure.

mimi
For me, its not about the profit. That will come if the customer enjoys the service and the product enough. I'd rather have a customer loving my food and what I do for a living and pay what he thinks its worth, then over charge, because me personally I don't run a catering business, so I wouldn't know exactly how much to charge at this point, but eventually I would think that I could figure out a formula for how much I feel each person eating is worth, or each plate that I serve etc.

finances are important, without them, I couldn't do anything, but I feel they aren't the MOST important part of the business. Correct me if I'm wrong please! I'd love to see what you think because I feel you have more experience in this field than I do.

Maybe for a returning customer I would require money up front and half etc because I know that they already are in favor of what I can do.

But a new customer, I feel that I should be able to show them what I can do, because I know my service is the best and more enjoyable for the customer than others, therefor bringing up my value, allowing me to charge more possibly than I originally would have could be an option after they are happy with my products.

Alex
 

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@AlexTheChef .... I see by your pix (and a few of your previous posts) that you work the BOH someplace.

Just one question.

Assuming you are employed in a kitchen owned by someone else (otherwise you would be Alex the homeless guy ;-) ....who keeps their eye on the P&L ?

Because I am of the school that considers a chef only a cook until he/she can run a kitchen to make a profit.

And since you don't seem to care about profit when it comes down to your side jobs.... who is minding the money at your FT job?

Just wondering....

mimi
I am pretty much homeless yeah, but that doesn't change my skill level. I do work BOH yes, and i'm not sure what your acronyms stand for. P&L? FT? Not sure what your intentions of those questions are, as you never answered mine.

And everyone's definition of a chef is different, however I agree to some degree that your definition is relatively close, but not exactly correct.

Alex.
 
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