good, cheap catered food??
My fiancee and I are getting married in Chicago this fall, and we are looking for a good, affordable caterer. If possible, we'd like to stay away from traditional catering companies in favor of a local restaurant that has catering capabilities.
We would love to do Mexican food, but we're having trouble finding Mexican restaurants that can cater a wedding. Any recommendations, for good Mexican food or other affordable options?
If you want cheaper than almost all of the "standard" Mexican restaurants, with quality just as good, if not better, please at least price out a Jimenez grocery store. You might also want to check if La Casa Del Pueblo on Blue Island caters. If you are looking to do a buffet with no servers, I'd bet these will be right up your alley. Jimenez does trays of food, and not much else. I'd miagine if LCDP caters, it would be very similar. I used Jimenez ni Wheeling or Buffalo grove for a big work party we do every year at the house in the summer. It was STELLAR for the price. I think the prices were pretty much ridiculous. A 1/2 hotel pan of guac was 15.00 if I recall correctly. They wouldn't include tortillas, but you can't really blame them for that - you'll have to do that yourself (warming logistics.) I'd really try to check with LCDP for a whole bunch of their tamales, their tinga. Seriously, I think you won't go wrong either way if you are really looking for low frills, and affordable catering. As an aside, I see "catering available" at almost every mex resto I go to in/around Chicago. I'm surprised to hear about a scarcity.
Check out Chuck's in Burbank. They've catered a lot of their own large events, and hosted some private parties. The food is always at least good, and some things are fantastic. They've also got a pretty wide selection of mexican (the cochinita pibil is outstanding) and non-mexican (barbecue, cajun/creole) and are very reasonably priced. That said, if you're looking for wait staff to manage everything (beyond delivery+setup), you'll need to find that elsewhere.
For full-service catering by a local mexican restaurant, I really don't have any ideas. Some of the more upscale places like Adobo Grill might do it, but it would probably be fairly expensive. I also know Nuevo Leon on 18th does a lot of catering-sized orders, but I don't think they even deliver.
For chuck's catering menu, etc: http://www.chuckscafe.com