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The Holidays are coming!

Be Prepared For the Holidays

Believe it or not, now is the time to start planning your next holiday party. Whether you want to throw a party to thank your employees, to bring together your neighbors, or an intimate affair for family and close friends, Andora has you covered. We’ve compiled some tips to make it easy!

Holiday Catering

Set the date

Everyone gets busy around the holidays, so book your date now and get the word out through email, Evite, paper cards, or Facebook. The sooner the better so your guests can block off their calendar before it fills up.

Choose a venue

Once you have a guest list and date together, decide what kind of party you envision. Will this be a weekday office luncheon or an intimate dinner party in your home? Or are you thinking a spacious ballroom will accommodate your size group best? Are spouses attending? Children? All of this will dictate your venue and the next step in the party planning process.

Luncheon, afternoon mixer, or an at-home party?

You have options. Depending on budget, some party planners opt for the weekday luncheon format that, by nature of the time of day, limits (or eliminates) the expense of alcoholic beverages.

  • Day-time Luncheon — Did you now a catered lunch at the office is less expensive than a restaurant? The cost of catered foods do range based on menu and your selection, but by setting the time of your party for a weekday, you will keep costs down. For one thing, it’s for employees only. You also won’t be serving alcohol.
  • Afternoon Mixers are gaining in popularity. These parties typically run from 4:00-6:00 PM and include heavy appetizers and beverages. Spouses and children may join the fun.
  • Keep it Dessert only — another creative way to keep your costs down, is to theme your party as a dessert party or a chocolates and wine party. You could even hold a contest for the dessert—a bake-off. Winner gets a paid day off or a gift card to a local spa.
  • Home parties — Often, at-home holiday parties are best. They’re personal, comfortable, and you get to maximize your dollar where it counts: the food. Rather than spend a portion of your budget on venue or bartending, you can put all of your money toward the food—either prepared by yourself or through a third-party catering company

Cost-savings tips:

  • Get an accurate head count; don’t pay for “no shows”
  • Hold your party on any day other than Friday or Saturday
  • Consider pushing the party off until January or February, after the holiday craze
  • Order off a menu of standard offerings to save money, rather than asking the chef to create something new from scratch
  • Consider buffet or themed stations as opposed to needing a wait staff to serve everybody sit-down meals
  • Pick a signature cocktail with beer and wine as opposed to open bar
  • Opt for butler-style serving where staff walks hors d’oeuvres around on a tray (people tend to eat what they take and not fill a plate unnecessarily)

Secret Weapon

No matter when or where you decide to hold your party, you can always enlist the help of a professional such as Andora catering. Pittsburgh-based Andora will partner with you to pull of the holiday party you envision.

Think of us as your secret weapon. We can work with you to select a menu. Then we can arrange to deliver the food and stay to set-up and serve, circulating while you mingle with your guests. Or, if you prefer, we can drop it off and let you serve your guests and we arrange to come back another day to pick up the chafing dishes and other equipment.

Do You Have a Rehearsal Dinner Coming Up?

Be Prepared for the Best Rehearsal Dinner

The rehearsal dinner proves that a wedding celebration spans more than just one day. Today’s bride and groom love to pull out all of the stops at their rehearsal dinner—viewing it as an opportunity to celebrate the family and friends who have supported their union.

Wedding Rehearsal

But before you begin to stress over planning two events, remember that the rehearsal dinner is just that—dinner—and food happens to be our speciality. Consider working with a special event catering company such as Andora to ease the process of planning your rehearsal dinner.

Where do I begin?

Andora’s Catering provides a wide range of special event catering. Pittsburgh-based Andora has been whipping up themed menus and a beautiful decor that sets just the right tone for the prelude to your big day.

Menu Options

Andora will be happy to work with you to develop a menu that matches not only your size group and venue, but your personality. Our rehearsal dinner catering chefs are eager to try something new or incorporate hometown favorites. It’s your day and we want it to be everything you’ve ever wanted. Whatever you envision, we will work within your budget to serve up a festive meal while you relax and enjoy your guests and each other.

Who’s Invited to a Rehearsal dinner?

Traditionally, the rehearsal dinner included only the wedding party and close family of the bride and groom. Out-of-town guests were also invited. This custom dates back to the days when weddings took place in the same town where the bride and her family had always lived. Now, even when it seems the majority of the guest list is coming in from out of town—including the bride! And the rehearsal dinner has expanded to encompass more than a simple meal at the end of the day. It’s an extension of the bride and groom’s gratitude.

Decor, Presentation, and Ambiance

As part of the event, our rehearsal dinner catering services would not be complete without set-up and creating atmosphere. We’ve worked with the most popular venues in Pittsburgh and know how to transform a space so that it’s all your own. Shouldn’t the presentation of the food look as pleasing and memorable as it tastes? We think so. Besides, you have enough on your plate between the wedding day and spending time with your guests. Leave the rest to us.

Four Catering Ideas for the Season

Making Your Catering This Season Great!

If you are fully immersed in the fun days of summer, why not throw a party! Whatever event you have in mind this summer, Andora Catering in Pittsburgh has what it takes to make your event one to remember. Here are four catering ideas that will make your next bash sparkle!

Catering Trends

Fruity and Fun Beverages

The key to summer catering is to keep it fun, relaxed and refreshing. Whether you are planning a wedding reception, a birthday party or a corporate event, start with your beverage and work around that. Mojitos, margaritas, or daiquiris are always a fun fruity way to offset the hot days of summer and embrace something with a laid-back, no pressure feel. If you’re looking for a premade cocktail with nonalcoholic options, we are happy to work with you to stir up the right mix.

Summer Sizzling Appetizers

A sure way to beat the heat this summer is to serve up appetizers that sizzle and have a kick. One trend is spicy and international finger foods. Not only will it help keep your guests mingling, it provides a variety of options for your guests to have fun trying. The key is to keep it unique and interesting so that your guests aren’t expecting the same old thing.

Farmer-inspired Entrees

Home to many of the finest farms in the area, Andora Catering loves to tap into the locally-grown fresh produce available this season. Don’t be surprised to see our chefs trolling the local farmers’ markets for new entree inspiration. Our entrees are not only local, they’re fresh, and they’re sure to impress even the most discerning foodie in the room. In the case of allergies or special dietary requirements, we will create just the right thing that is safe and allergen-free.

Dessert Bars are all the Rage

If you prefer to skip the appetizers and entrees and head straight for the dessert table, we’re right there with you. This is the season to take advantage of fresh fruits and berries and herbs after all. You can theme your party to be all about dessert. We could put together a make-you-own sundae bar station or a crepe brunch party if that’s your desire.

Is it time for your next summer bash? Call Andora Catering today and let us make your next party an affair to remember!

Hosting a Summer Event Made Easy

Summer Catering, The Easy Way

Everyone loves a good party, but not everyone loves throwing one. But what you serve and how doesn’t have to stress you out. Leave that to us—and check out our easy entertaining tips this summer so that get-togethers with your friends is as relaxing as the season. And at the end of the day or night, you’ll be asking yourself why you didn’t do this sooner!

Seasonal Catering

Prep Ahead

The easiest way to entertain in the summer is to grill. You can prepare all of your cold sides ahead of time and have them ready to go while the rest comes hot off the grill. Even better, have your local catering business handle the bulk of the items while you supplement with appetizers or desserts. Or, ask your caterer to do it all while you focus on the guests.

Pre-mix a Themed Cocktail

Pick a themed cocktail that you think would appeal to a wide range of guests and premix this ahead of time. For summer, maybe a mojito, sangria, or any fruity beverage would work well. You can serve them up in fun vintage shakers out on display on ice and keep the rest behind the scenes in a pitcher inside your refrigerator. You can even offer a chilled red wine for a summertime twist.

Get Creative with Presentation

How you serve the food is almost as important as the food itself. Try using serving ware at various heights, such as a vintage cake stand to present appetizers or desserts. Also, fruit skewers are a fun way to serve it up. Consider placing shrimp cocktail in shooters or use martini glasses for fruit parfaits. China is lovely for smaller groups, but for larger groups, keep it simple and safe. You can always use cotton-linen napkins that are washable to add color and texture.

Distribute the Food and Beverage Stations

To keep your guests from crowding around the kitchen island, spread the food and beverages around for better mingling and conversation. Set up little gathering spots on the deck, porch, and other outdoor areas near games such as croquet or horse shoe toss. Keep shade in mind and set-up accordingly. Don’t forget the music!

Establish an Ambiance with Twinkling Lights

Choose two colors and thread them throughout your party venue. You might not need much in your blooming garden, but a label or two or votives or lanterns with candles can complete the picture and set the mood. Have a few blank labels on hand for the items your guests may contribute. Also, because your party may extend into the evening as all good parties do, make sure you’re ready with lighting. String paper lanterns or hang twinkling lights. Use hurricane candles or torches to light the way to the ladies’ room.

Keep your Guests Comfortable

Don’t forget the citronella candles or porch ceiling fans to keep the pesky mosquitos at bay. Lemon candles or canisters of seafood scraps to attract the meat-loving bees work as long as they are out of reach from pets and children.

Remember to Wow Your Wedding Guests

Keeping Your Guest on Their Toes

Your wedding day is the best kind of celebration—and there’s no better way to immerse your guests in the excitement than through a spread that pleases the eye as much as the palette. Chances are, you’ve attended to more wedding details than you can count, and your reception is the pinnacle of it all.

Catering Pittsburgh

By partnering with a Pittsburgh-based caterer like Andora, the big decisions will seem easy. Here’s some catering tips that will help you make a big splash on your monumental day:

Serve the Bride and Groom’s favorites

Have you considered recreating that special meal you had on your first date? Or serving up the bride’s favorite side dish? How about offering the main entrée he cooked for you while you were dating? By adding a little personal touch, your guests will long remember this day and enjoy celebrating it with you. A little goes a long way. You can offer unique catering food items such as your hometown signature dishes or a themed menu.

Present it with a Twist

From the moment your guests step foot inside the doors of your reception venue, they’ll know they’re in the right place. By displaying the food in a way that enhances your personality and style, you can take everything to a whole new level.

For example, you can introduce your favorite foods and your new spouse’s favorites in a fun bar style. Or serve up shrimp cocktail in shooters. Your caterer will help you by taking care of the behind the scenes aspects of entertaining—such as how to set up the tables with risers under the tablecloth for a pleasing presentation. It’s the attention to detail that counts.

Offer hometown or seasonal favorites

Based in Pittsburgh, Andora is all too familiar with these hometown favorites that are likely yours, too. Showcase your personality and your hometown city’s too, by serving up the dishes historically loved by ‘burghers. Or, marry the two backgrounds, bringing in your fiancé’s favorites, ethnic foods, or maybe incorporating a family recipe. By personalizing here and there, your reception will be even more your own.

Consider Andora Catering for your wedding. Andora Catering can help you deliver a memorable meal at any budget, impressing your guests with any one of the creative ways you choose to not only serve it up but accent this special day.

Choose your Catering Menu Wisely

Creating Your Menu

Planning your special event is no small feat. You have to choose the venue, the entertainment, guest list, a theme. When it comes to your menu, Andora Catering recommends a few helpful tips to make this important element of your next affair a breeze.

Catering Menu

When selecting the type of food you want, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is whether you want to incorporate both hot and cold foods or stick to one or the other. From a catering perspective, each presents a unique set of challenges, but nothing that Andora Catering isn’t equipped to handle.

Hot Meal Catering Option

How large is your venue? Are you envisioning a buffet line with carving stations or a sit-down meal? When you choose hot meal options for your event, we’ll use chafing dishes, lighting and food warmers to ensure everything is available at the right temperature. So, you’ll want to make sure you have ample space and set-up time for this type of arrangement. Buffet style is often an easier way to serve hot meals to large groups of guests. For serving 50-100 guests, for example, the buffet option makes sense.

Cold Meal Catering Option

Outside of drinks, which are easier to transport and manage using coolers and refrigerators or chilled on ice, serving cold meals poses its own challenges. You’ll need plenty of space and energy to keep the food cold, and for potentially long periods of time. For example, a chilled gelato must be scooped all at once in order to time it for serving.

Trust Andora Catering

We’re here to help you serve up a memorable meal at your next event, no matter what you select. We will work with you and your venue of choice to ensure that what’s hot stays hot and what’s cold stays cold. This way your guests’ meals will become a delightful—and delectable—extension of their total experience.

Treat Mom to High Tea this Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day!

With Mother’s Day around the corner, Andora catering company wants to help you celebrate with the special women in your life in high style.

Leave the kitchen work to us while you enjoy all of the trappings of the day together—from pretty china teacups to delectable triangle sandwiches and sweet cakes fit for a queen.

Our goal is for you to focus on what matters most—your guests of honor—and leave the detailed preparation and clean-up to us. What better way can you create memories to last a lifetime?

Mother's Day Photo

Are you celebrating a baptism, prom or graduation this spring? Andora catering provides specialized menus to suit any occasion from wedding catering, baby showers, birthday parties, and anniversaries to memorial or bereavement luncheons and family reunions.

We offer in-home dining, buffet-style, or full service delivery. Choose a menu of hors d’oeuvres and cocktails or full dinner. With so many selections to choose from, you can easily please your guests in a creative and meaningful way.

Nothing says “I love you” to your mother or bride-to-be or mommy-to-be than a serene, lovely High Tea—considered one of our favorite time-honored traditions.

Call us today to book High Tea this year with your mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, or children. Andora catering is available to help you plan all of your springtime celebrations. We’ll work with you to create an unforgettable menu that matches the occasion.

Andora Catering offers private and corporate special event catering, as well as wedding catering, at venues of your choice. Be it a grand bridal shower or an intimate tea for two, we specialize in tailoring the menu and service to meet your style and budget. Our culinary experience, knowledge and attention to detail will ensure that we not only meet, but will exceed all of your expectations.

Popular Reasons to Use Catering For Your Event

Advantages of Catering Your Next Event

The catering market is a place where businesses, individuals, schools and churches can get the finest food produced for any event. Working with a catering company is a business relationship that goes far beyond a check for services rendered. When working with a catering business, the customer has a chance to get custom-created menus that will work for any function and any party size.

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