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Help! Need kosher catering (full service) for sunday brunch on a budget

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I've been having some difficulty finding a restaurant or caterer who can do off-premises dairy brunch for under $25/head incl. service. Dairy King and Levy's Italian (Manalapan) have come in under that, and Menagerie slightly over. I am not from this area, so would really appreciate your input, either about any of the above options or someone else.

THANK YOU!

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  1. Try Hunki's in Plainview, Long Island. Steve does an excellent job.

    1. We used Capstone Caterer (formerly Mom's Bagels) for catering twice, and were really pleased. Bagels, assorted smoked fish and fish salads, egg salad, fruit salad, delicious little muffins and pastries, juice and coffee. Very attractively set up and everything was tasty. Waiter service is available, but we didn't need it. All of the serving and eating materials like plates and utensils were disposable, so we were able to take care of that. (I'll confess that my favorite part was the leftover mini-muffins and pastries, which we got to take home after the breakfast) Their number is 212-494-0440.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Clarissa

        Clarissa,

        Thanks for the tip. I spoke with them today and he's going to send me a proposal - apparently northern NJ is within their range.

        1. re: rebeccafriedman

          One recommendation: be very explicit about what you need in terms of service. We didn't prearrange for them to set up, and found out that they were planning on dropping off the food and not setting it up. We hadn't requested full service because we were in a synagogue and didn't need it. Discuss fully with them what you need for set-up, full service, cleanup, etc. (I didn't mention this before because I'd forgotten, but just got reminded)

      2. As I mentioned earlier, Hunki's of Plainview does excellent catering. They provide good service and are easy to work with. Here is the link:
        http://www.hunkispizza.com/

        1. Capstone - Mom's - Out of Business

          1 Reply
          1. re: RichardGee

            Not as of Friday. I called their number to doublecheck before I posted it here.

          2. Try Back to Nature on Kings Highway in Brooklyn. Should work for you.

            2 Replies
            1. re: sultan

              Thanks to all of you for your posts and your help!!! Much appreciated. In my haste, I neglected to mention my location - Ridgewood, NJ. I am not sure if it's worth it for Brooklyn/LI caterers to shlep out to northern NJ with all the waitstaff (I am expecting more than 200 people so will definitely need full service) but I will check. In the meantime, got a very nice proposal from Levy's (Manalapan) so that's a start. Thanks again and Happy (Secular) New Year to everyone.

              1. re: sultan

                Sultan,

                I had never heard of this place before but what a great idea! My fiance and I love health food and it never occurred to us we might find that in an actual Kosher restaurant. I talked to Albert and he partners with someone else to do the off-premises work, so I'll let you know if this works out! Thanks for your help. Rebecca

              2. Try Main Event Caterers in New Jersey.

                38 W Forest Ave
                Englewood, NJ 07631
                (201) 894-8710

                2 Replies
                1. re: jeterfan

                  try the caterers in elizabeth . i would see what kind of restaurants are in shamash and go form there. levys in manalapan definitely has good food. is tax included too. make sure and dont forget about silverware. make sure it is soup to nuts no pun intended.

                  1. re: janetldd

                    Hey Janet -
                    Can you suggest anyone in Elizabeth? I am not from the area so don't know any of these catering services personally.... $25/head includes service but not tax, gratuities, linens, or china. I am providing the linen and disposables. Thanks for the feedback on levy's - anyone used Dairy King?

                2. In Ridgewood you are close to both Teaneck and Monsey, you could talk to the guys at Shoppers Haven in Monsey they certainly do drop-off catering at a reasonable price, I don't know if they do full service. ANd maybe Glaubers on Mapple AVenue in SPring Valley.
                  But how about Maadan in TEaneck, they do nice work and while not especially cheap would probably work with you.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: EvanM

                    I got a proposal from Maadan, finally, after having to call to remind them about it several times - and after explicitly giving them the budget to work within, got something very uninspired at double the price. Not exactly condusive to doing business!

                  2. There is a caterer in Teaneck who does mostly brisim for a very reasonable price. It might pay to call them- I have seen them do an occasional engagement party. You can get their info at www.8thdaycaterers.com

                    1. My friend just suggested the mane event in englewood. i also will find out the contacts in elizabeth for you today.

                      1. I attended an affair that had over 200 people catered by Main Event. The food and service were very good. When my family had a party catered by Main Event with a smaller amount of people, they also did a really good job.

                        5 Replies
                        1. re: jeterfan

                          i worked for main event when i was in high school as a waiter, and they are terrific, i would rank them second best glatt kosher caterer in the tri state area. but first place deffinetly goes to Prestige caterers.

                          1. re: jeterfan

                            I am sure Main Event is very good - but they don't do this price range, very very few Kosher outfits do - thus the posting!!! Thanks for all your help, everyone.

                            1. re: rebeccafriedman

                              how many people are you having? i did a brunch myself on chanukah for about 25 people and it came out very cheap. i prepared everything the night before and had everything out when the guests arrived.
                              if you want, you can do that, and then just hire a waiter to keep the place neat and clean, and refill trays etc....

                              1. re: kiddush hopper

                                She posted above that she is expecting more than 200 people.

                                1. re: Clarissa

                                  good call

                          2. Try James Caterers in Cedar Knolls. Jimmy does a nice job, particularly on dairy. Google for the website.

                            -Rick

                            1. I am not a big fan of Prestige. I attended several affairs that Prestige catered and I didn't care for the food. For example, we were served lettuce that had ice on it. The presentation was nice, but the food was not that good. This was several years ago. Maybe they have improved since then.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: jeterfan

                                I have to agree. His presentation is always very nice but the taste leaves a lot to be desired. Very very inconsistent with the food and overpriced as well.

                              2. Thanks to all of you for your great insight and help - I did investigate pretty much all the options you mentioned, but in the end went with Levy's of Manalapan, NJ. They had the best prices, flexibility, and attitude. Very nice people and glowing references. FYI, the brunch event in question is actually my wedding! :->

                                1. Highly suggest you buy and read this book:

                                  Never Drink Red Wine Under The Chupah- (Just In Case It Spills On You) -And Other Invaluable Tips For A Perfect Wedding

                                  http://www.fetchbook.info/compare.do?...

                                  Saved us a lot of aggravation.

                                  1. BTW - book is also available direct from here:

                                    SIMANTOVPUBLICAT@aol.com

                                    (and I have nothing to do with the author/publishers - everyone I know who has read it says it is an invaluable guide to planning a Jewish wedding).

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: Kitchenman

                                      I bought that one, yes very practical. Thanks :-)

                                    2. Hey Y'All!

                                      Just wanted to let you know that my wedding Sunday brunch idea worked out really well - Levy's of Manalapan NJ did a great job at a very reasonable price and everyone was very pleased with the food - not to mention the fun of having dairy at a wedding! I'd recommend them highly.
                                      Thanks for all your input. Here's a picture from our chuppah.

                                      Best,
                                      Rebecca

                                      PS we are in Chicago now, Kosher restaurant wasteland! :-(