Catering Advice

from the Pros!

In order for your party to be a success, you will want to be prepared for all phases. The following are some basic tips to ensure the success of your event:


When Placing Your Order with Mardi Gras Staff, consider the taste and eating habits of your guests when planning the menu.

Have you requested service staff?

Be sure to confirm with them on their arrival time and who is getting the food to your house - you or them or Mardi Gras delivery service. They should arrive approximately 2 hours before the event starts in most cases.

Equipment & Supplies

Are you equipped with all you need for coffee?

  • Coffee urns
  • Filters
  • Ground coffee
  • Half & half or milk
  • Sugar
  • Substitute sugar
  • Stirrers
  • Tea
  • Lemon wedges for tea


(Mardi Gras will pre-measure your coffee for the size of your pot). Remember it takes 1 minutes per cup to perk the coffee so don't wait until dessert to start it.

Are you equipped with the proper dishwashing elements?

  • Sponges
  • Dish soap
  • Paper towels
  • Dish towels
  • Drying racks


Buffet for food items

  • Serving platters
  • Large bowls
  • Small condiment bowls
  • Cutting boards
  • Serving spoons
  • Forks
  • Tongs
  • Cake plates
  • Bread/roll basket
  • Cookie platter
  • Cake cutters
  • Carving knives Some people find it easiest to take them out and label them all beforehand. Make sure your knives are SHARP



  • Meat thermometer
  • Heavy duty garbage bags
  • Clear garbage bags to identify linens (to not throw away by mistake!),
  • Saran wrap,
  • Foil,
  • Zip lock bags and containers for leftovers


To Do

  • Print up directions for your guests and send/fax/email them to avoid having to repeat them many times.
  • Turn on and use all refrigerators in your house and know what foods need refrigeration and what can remain at room temperature. Proper storage is VERY important. If you are unsure, ask the Mardi Gras staff what items require refrigeration.
  • Be sure your oven is calibrated properly. When heating food in your
    oven, follow the heating instructions as a guideline ONLY and remember that all ovens are calibrated differently and that the more you put into an oven, the longer you will be heating things.
  • Equip your bathroom with enough toilet tissue and hand towels. Check it throughout the event to be sure it is clean.
  • Contact your neighbors (or the police in some cases) if there will be a lot of traffic and cars the day of your party.



  • Have plenty of ice - at least 1 pound per person plus what you need to chill beverages in your coolers. Remember that ice melts quickly in the summer and you can store it outside in the winter!
  • Make a beverage list and get the beverages shopped way before the event - do not store them in the heat. Ask Mardi Gras for its BARLIST for suggested items and utensils to outfit your bar. Don't forget your cocktail napkins for hors d'oeuvres and beverages. Order/purchase enough glasses so you do not have to re-wash them - 3 - 4 per person.
  • Have pitchers ready for juices or water. Use a separate cooler for "clean" ice for drinks. What you use to chill drinks in is not acceptable for a beverage as well. Renting a bar is better than using a table for a bar if you have a bartender because the appearance is neater.