This is my second wedding cake but the first time I will be delivering to a professional venue (the first wedding was in a field and all the food was homemade so I didn't have to worry about caterers and what not). I wanted the bride to ask the venue a few questions for me to make my delivery easier - could y'all look over the questions and tell me if I am forgetting anything??
- What time should I deliver the cake?
- What door do I deliver the cake to?
- Will I be able to assemble the cake there?
wait wait wait -- i did this a little diffferently than you are proposing --
i told the the bride when i would deliver -- two hours before the reception starts -- and i assembled on site if i wanted to -- i did not ask for permission -- for example we have a riverboat that does weddings -- i think you have to deliver that one all assembled but that was eons ago and that's the only place that ever might have had a policy -- if some place does have a policy they will tell the bride -- it's unusual to not allow on site stacking -- so the venue would lead with that --
which door to deliver to is an interesting question -- i asked her at the consult -- i always tracked down where exactly* the reception was taking place and the issue of the door just naturally occurred -- but of equal importance is that i got the name & number of the wedding coordinator or whoever is going to be there first to decorate on the day of the reception -- and i requested the time they will be arriving -- so i asked the bride to please tell them to prepare the cake table with the table clothes and skirting first so there will not be any delays with setting up the cake -- plus if you ever arrive and have no way to contact the bride -- you have someone else's phone to call --
*always get an exact address even for churches -- for every delivery -- when they say, "you can't miss it" believe me you can! hahahahaha -- and they have their phones shut off out getting married so you need to gather numbers when things are not hectic for them --
best to you
I agree with everything k8memphis said! In addition, I ask for the phone number of the catering manager/wedding planner/general person who's in charge PLUS at least one additional contact. The catering manager I dealt with at the last wedding I did a cake for was notoriously hard to get in contact with, and just in case, I wanted to be able to talk to someone close to the bride, so she gave me her maid of honor's number too.
I also put a blurb in my contract about how the cake will be displayed and discuss with the bride that cakes are safest when displayed against a wall and make sure she knows that any cake stand that will be used has to be x number of inches wide in order to support the cake safely.
Oh my, I didn't even think of the cake stand! Who is usually in charge of getting that? The bride or the venue?
Okay so I tell the bride I am delivering the cake at 5 (reception is at 7). I ask for the numbers of catering manager/wedding planner/general person who's in charge and the number of the person who is in charge of decorating? Or I just have the bride tell the person in charge of decorating/setting up that the cake table needs to be set up and ready at 5?
I am so thankful to you guys! Like I said, my first wedding was small and I wasn't working with any other businesses so this is very new to me :)
YOU are in charge of everything cake related. You get the number of the person in charge of the reception - catering manager, venue manager, wedding coordinator, whoever, you call them and ask what time the table will be ready for the cake, because you will be delivering it at x time. Then call the venue manager (if it's a different person) and ask about entrance - what time the doors will be open, and if there are any steps to traverse between outside and the cake table.
Also, from years of experience bring a few pieces of thin cardboard in case you need to shim a table leg, because it's not level; a small level to check the table; all your supplies used in decorating the cake - all of them; a small container to go get water; paper towels; a knife or scissors cause you might need to cut the cardboard; spatulas; gloves; straws (handy if you get surprised with a heavy topper that you have to support on the top tier; etc. I always had a large bin packed with everything I had ever used at a venue over 12 years of cake deliveries that just stayed packed.
Also bring a copy of your HD dept catering permit (many venues want one on file).
As far as the cake stand goes, there are several ways to go about it. I know some bakers rent out stands that their customers can pay a small fee to use. Or you can have the bride take care of getting the stand, if she wants one. This is the route I go - that way the bride can choose the stand that matches her decorations best. I just make sure she knows what size to get. From my perspective, if the bride wants to use a cake stand that the venue is providing, I would ask her to contact the venue and arrange that, and then let me know.
Okay so recap - just to make sure I got all of this right haha
- I tell the bride I am delivering the cake at 5 (reception starts at 7)
- I get the phone numbers of the venue decorator and the venue manager and also let them know I am delivering the cake by 5, so the cake table needs to be ready by then.
- I make sure the bride has a cake stand picked out that will hold the cake.
Thanks so much!! This really helped :)
So I just about to email the bride when I received an email from her. She said "they said that wedding cakes can be arranged in their banquet room 30 minutes prior to the starting time of the function." . . . I feel like 30 minutes before the reception is kind of cutting it close . . . what do y'all think?
How much assembly do you need to do on-site? If you know you'll have to do a lot there and thirty minutes won't be enough, then talk to someone at the venue directly and let them know when you'll need to be there. They shouldn't have any problem with it.
It will depend on how long you think it will take you - how much 'finishing' work needs to be done or is it just a 'plop & leave' design? I agree w/the other poster - take to the venue directly. I'm rather interested in knowing why such a short time to set up......I have set up as much as the night before a time or two... Don't like to be there were times when it was the only way due to other orders that needed delivering.
two possible reasons for a short setup time - the venue books events back to back to back -- the venue doesn't necessarily know what they are doing -- and a third could be the venue sets up when the previous event closes so they don't have to get there early --
i'm just thinking out loud too early in the morning
Yah K8 I considered those things. Was just interested in why. Call me nosie :)