ISO Reasonable Kosher Caterer for Bar Mitzvah Brunch In Northern NJ
Can anyone help a friend of mine find a diamond in the rough? She is searching for a reasonably priced caterer to do a bar mitzvah brunch in northern NJ. Someone who can do more than smoked fish and bagles. She has eaten at affairs done by the usual caterers in Bergen County. Thanks.
We were on a budget, but also, since our events were not in a synagogue, had some flexibility (did not need a mashgiach). We self catered - hired our own wait staff, rented our own linens and purchased the food from a caterer (we used Josh's Place in Manhattan and saved money by picking it up ourselves). We purchased silverware at a restaurant supply house and used fancy paper plates. It is more work for sure, but the waiters did all the set up, clean up; the food was outstanding and abundant, and everyone was happy. Josh's Place will also do full service of course.
I find most of the food by local caterers passable, but lacking in creativity, quality and taste; not up to foodie standards. Note that we purchased or made our desserts - caterers buy 95% of their desserts all from the same bakeries, none of them particularly good.
I did a bris brunch a few years ago with Menagerie in Englewood and was very pleased. It was bagels and lox and whole smoked whitefishes. But we also got three types of Kugel and omelet stations, fruit, appetizer salads. We also chose real plates and utensils as opposed to plastic, which I think is key to making it more upscale. It was very inexpensive for what we received and I think will likely be in your budget. They set up all the food so beautifully and there was a lot of it, the presentation and quality of the food was really the same as in a non-kosher event (and I mean that as a compliment!).