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catering recommendation for Mpls/St. Paul?

We're thinking of a catered outdoor party for my parents 50th wedding anniversary. At this point it could go any direction from more sophisticated (but still outdoor) to a pig roast. Since I live in Atlanta now, I haven't a clue who might be a good caterer up there. The event would be at my sister's in Eden Prairie.

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  1. People seem to really respect Chowgirls for catering. I have no experience with them as a planner, but my wife is in the wedding industry (no connection to Chowgirls) so I tend to absorb a lot of chatter and knowledge about what's good.

    http://www.chowgirls.net/

    1. I'll put a plug in for Solo by Bonicelli. Good food, lots of locally sourced ingredients, and she has excellent suggestions and dishes to fit any style.

      http://www.solobybonicelli.com/

      1. I haven't quite - yet - worked with Chowgirls, but I liked my initial contact with them. I had a small party (20-25) last summer, and my budget was too low for Chowgirls. The cheapest they could do, including tax and a required gratuity, was about $75/person without serving staff on-site. The food would have been awesome, though. I love their menu selections and the fact that they use local and organic when possible.

        P.S. For my little party-on-the-cheap, I eventually went to Holy Land for Middle Eastern food, which was appropriately wonderful given our much lower price point (under $20/person, including a birthday cake from somewhere else, but no delivery charges - I picked everything up myself). Luckily, my guests were fine with aluminum vats of food and plastic serving spoons. I love my super-casual family. :-)

        1. Another source to check on is Taste Bud, aka Molly from Kitchen in the Market in Midtown Global Market. She is also a good bud with Steph Meyer from MSP Mag.

          http://www.tastebudtart.com/

          She has a really good sense of taste and an great eye for making her food look good too!

          1. I think you can hire many (if not all) of the food trucks to cater, too, and they'd work well for an outdoor event. Some of my faves (though admittedly I haven't tried a whole lot of them) are Sassy Spoon and Chef Shack. Other, more knowledgeable people please chime in. . .

            3 Replies
            1. re: diesel

              Yep - food trucks were going to be my suggestion too. Gastrotruck I know does catering and they have excellent chow! And if you want something fun and sweet - Marie Antoinette's Crepes! She's done for the season and I already have withdrawals.

              1. re: Seige

                For people who suggest food trucks -- how do you all envision this working? I was standing in front of the Fitzgerald Theatre last weekend while a single food truck waited on customers ... one at a time ... and could not quite envision the logistics.

                Or, rather than made-to-order on the spot, were you thinking the vendor would make all the dishes ahead and simply serve it from the truck?

                People do get excited about the creativity & variety of having food trucks at their wedding reception; etc.. How do you make it work so Great-Aunt Delia doesn't fall out of her dress pumps waiting in line for empanadas?

                1. re: KTFoley

                  It works fine for a fairly unstructured event. . . Where people aren't all trying to eat at the same time.