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-   -   I have been requested to BBq for a wedding:) (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=93389)

Theboz1419 10-03-2010 10:39 PM

I have been requested to BBq for a wedding:)
 
My Aunt just sent me a message to ask if i would be the cook at my cousin wedding in July or Aug.

Im so excited, I never been asked to do anything like that and to top it off, i live in Chicago and they would fly me to the wedding to be the Cook.

I do have a question about Smoking on a UDS

About how many people could I possibly feed on a UDS or two of them, with two racks? I only ever done enough for me or my roommates and never thought about it. I would think Pulled pork would yeild the most food per person then anything else I could possibly smoke on one, if they go that route and make two UDS before I get there. Or they could decide to rent a bbq'er but I would think that could be expensive and a UDS could be cheaper to make.

Any thoughts of what I should ask besides knowing the amount of people and what they would like to smoke or BBQ

Grillman 10-04-2010 12:32 AM

Well I suppose you have two choices.

1. Run away....far away.
2. Go ahead and do it.......If you decide to do it; get a FIRM count from
the BRIDE on exactly how many people will be there. Do two or three
practice cooks to see how much work it will be and how much meat you
will need. It sounds like you don't have any catering experience; and if
anything goes wrong; the bride will never forgive you for ruining her
wedding.
Have the bride E-mail, or regular mail you the information....how many
people, how much meat of each type (ribs, brisket, pulled pork, etc.)
she wants. Don't go with verbal figures...get it in writing. Don't assume
anything...are you supposed to make the side dishes too? What about
beverages? Plates? Forks, knives, spoons? Cups, napkins?

Is your cooking going to be your "gift" to the bride...or will you be paid?
Figure out what it will cost...chaffing dishes, canned heat, tablecloths
and everything else.

If you go there and use cooking equipment (UDS) that you are not familiar
with...there could be problems. Be careful.

Good Luck!

Theboz1419 10-04-2010 01:31 AM

Yeah, i figured it would be not a easy thing to do. But, They will get everything and fly me to Washington, so to me its a free trip to see family and I have always wanted to show them my skills of BBQ :) anyways.

mikeTRON 10-04-2010 02:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Grillman (Post 1420516)
Well I suppose you have two choices.

1. Run away....far away.
2. Go ahead and do it.......If you decide to do it; get a FIRM count from
the BRIDE on exactly how many people will be there. Do two or three
practice cooks to see how much work it will be and how much meat you
will need. It sounds like you don't have any catering experience; and if
anything goes wrong; the bride will never forgive you for ruining her
wedding.
Have the bride E-mail, or regular mail you the information....how many
people, how much meat of each type (ribs, brisket, pulled pork, etc.)
she wants. Don't go with verbal figures...get it in writing. Don't assume
anything...are you supposed to make the side dishes too? What about
beverages? Plates? Forks, knives, spoons? Cups, napkins?

Is your cooking going to be your "gift" to the bride...or will you be paid?
Figure out what it will cost...chaffing dishes, canned heat, tablecloths
and everything else.

If you go there and use cooking equipment (UDS) that you are not familiar
with...there could be problems. Be careful.

Good Luck!

Im quoting this because it is worth reading again!

I have only catered once and it was amazing how many details you COULD easily leave out. IF you have ANY miscommunication you will have a brideZILLA on your hands. haha Seriously though it would be a shame for someone to overlook a detail or two because that is a very important day for them. Get it all in writing and confirm everything for everyones sake. Do a few practice runs like Grillman said. Its a big responsibility and an equal amount of fun :becky:

NRA4Life 10-04-2010 06:37 AM

I've done weddings and it is a huge responsibility and stressful time even when I'm using my own pit that I'm familiar with. I would not want to be responsible for someone's wedding food when not cooking on my own pit, knowing I had all the wood/fuel I needed, all the dry rub I needed, knowing where to purchase all the meat I need, and having everything I needed in the event something came up like poor weather or I needed to buy something at the last minute. I'd re-read everything in the previous posts and approach the whole thing apprehensively. I wouldn't look at this as a free trip to see family, I'd look at it as the most important BBQ you've ever done in your life...because it is. If you screw this up for any reason, even for reasons that are beyond your control, you will be responsible in the eyes of everyone, especially the wedding party. Good luck, I hope it works out, but if it was me...I'd pass on the whole thing.

Koopdaddy 10-04-2010 10:44 AM

I recently did pulled pork for about 160 people. I was able to fit 6 8lb butts in my UDS and it took about 14 hours to get them all to 200 degrees. We ended up with about 1 butt worth of meat leftover (we also served grilled chicken thighs and someone else provided the side dishes).

My advice, is to get everything in writing...even if it is a gift and you are not charging for the service. Have everything detailed out. Everything. The last thing you want is to run out of food, especially for a wedding.

Once you have it all in writing, be realistic about it and say no if you have to.

Patrick C. 10-04-2010 11:21 AM

What about cooking for the rehearsal dinner? You still get to cook for all the relatives, with the benefit of fewer total people to cook for, a little less stress, and "He ruined my rehearsal dinner!" isn't nearly as bad as "He ruined my wedding!".

Definitely go a few days ahead to do a trial run and try to get everything figured out.

Gore 10-04-2010 11:50 AM

I only did one wedding, steak and shrimp. It worked out quite well, but the headcount was only 3, bride, groom and best man. I don't think I'd like to cook for many more and it sounds like you've got a logistics nightmare. I hope you're planning to go out at least a week early. Grillman's advice is excellent (especially point 1), but I usually try one more option and that is to convince them to elope. Usually they don't take this advice but afterward tell me they wish they had.

LGHT 10-04-2010 12:01 PM

I would be very flattered, but I think I would pass. Just too much pressure and too many details to pull it off without any hitches. Like NRA4Life mentioned it's hard enough to do in your own backyard with your own pit, but in another state on equipment you've never used before is just setting yourself up for failure. Do them and yourself a favor and humbly suggest a local vendor, maybe even someone here.

mikeTRON 10-04-2010 02:07 PM

Yeah I was conflicted when I wrote my original message... I wasnt sure if I would suggest that you pass on the wedding or ask for rehersal dinner instead, but the fact of the matter is you will have a VERY short time to locate parts, tools and drum to build your UDS and then you have to learn how to smoke with it or atleast make sure its operating properly. I'm not one to tell someone what to do but I want to make sure you are fully aware of the potential complications involved.

Do you know how many people will be attending?



Check out this link for a cool excel file that helps you determine how much to cook for a catering event : http://www.crankybuzzard.com/CrankyB...BQWorkbook.xls


Oh well actually I opened that and its not the one I was looking for but cool none the less. I'll see If I can find the catering one...

mikeTRON 10-04-2010 02:11 PM

Here is the catering spreadsheet: http://bbq-review.com/planner/catering1.xls

chambersuac 10-04-2010 02:13 PM

Like said before, get it all in writing. When you get the head count of people eating, figure out how much food you'll need and then add some more to cover last minute add-ons, overeaters, mistakes, dropped food, etc. Are they expecting you to serve, too? Side dishes? Or...just meat.

Once you get the facts, make a plan, including a time table and stick to it. Many here will help you get through it.

Blessings on your preparations and future cook.

landarc 10-04-2010 02:29 PM

I have catered over the years and weddings scare the bejeebers out of me, I have also shot video at weddings. You only get one shot to get it right, it is incredibly important to many people, they will not understand if you blow it, the time table is often difficult as folks are partying and not inclined to stick to a schedule. I have cooked on my own cooker and on others cookers (sometimes you just have no choice). It is not something I would recommend a novice in catering take on. And for the record, cooking for a Superbowl party or a bunch of friends at a house party is not the same.

That being said, organization is the key, I start preparing for a wedding cook weeks ahead, I start assembling my gear at least one week ahead and revisit the gear often. I make sure I have all the seasonings ready to go, make sure I have the food ordered at least a week in advance (and paid for). If I am working in someone else's kitchen, I arrange to visit the day before, drop my gear and settings at that time and make sure I know the layout.

Finally, if I am cooking, I am not a part of the party, I dress for cooking, I work on the food and I make sure things work out. I do maybe two or three parties a year anymore, I refuse all religious and wedding events and I still find it stressful. I wish you good luck if you take this on.

gtsum 10-04-2010 03:05 PM

I would pass on this...too many variables..it might be different if the wedding was in your home town, where you kinow where to get supplies, have your own cooker, etc...no way would I go across the country with no materials and go into it blind...

armor 10-04-2010 03:18 PM

I have done 4 wedding rehearsal dinners but never the actual wedding. They are scary as so much depends on you. Just did one last week actually. Every time I do these I tell myself that this is the last one. As in all of these events it's all about timing and thinking everything through over and over. What if something is dropped...do I have enough in backup to replace it. Last week we were asked and provided deserts for the first time on top of everything else. Even it was only for 85 people it was still a lot going on. Not having my own equipment would make me shy away as I can on occasion still screw stuff up with equipment I am familiar with. Good luck with your decision.


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