Wedding Cakes & Food Forum

Chipotle Catering

My fiancé and I met online and we decided to have our first date and meeting at Chipotle. We are now engaged 3 years later and deciding on catering options. We want to have chipotle cater because we love it and because is fairly cheap (ranging $12-1350 per person.) in comparison to other places around here. We also work for a photobooth company and have seen many different wedding with so many different food options. Yet it is all the same.. Chicken or beef. We want to be different yet my soon to be mother-in-law, thinks it's trashy and equal to KFC. She also mentioned 2 people don't like the food. not sure what to do? Don't want to disappoint but then again it is our wedding. 
Advice welcome.. 

Re: Chipotle Catering

  • I agree with FMIL. Not everyone likes Chipotle/mexican food (I personally do). Also with all the bad publicity they have received lately, I don't know if it is such a good idea.
  • I agree with FMIL. Not everyone likes Chipotle/mexican food (I personally do). Also with all the bad publicity they have received lately, I don't know if it is such a good idea.
    ^^This^^.. I love Chipotle but the repeated incidents have me more than a little leery about patronizing their restaurants at the moment. 

    OP, inexpensive does not mean it is cheap or trashy.  Unless your MIL is footing the bill for the food, stop telling her of your plans.  There are many ways to incorporate a mexican "homage" into your food without serving an exclusive mexican meal.  If you look into Panera Bread, for example, for catering, you could include their tortilla soup as an option.  You could serve chips/guac/salsa, or mini tacos as an appetizer. 

    Chicken or beef options are common because they more than likely satisfy most palates.  Remember, the food options should be good and universally acceptable to the majority of your guests.  It should not be chosen based upon a personal theme or memory.
  • Hey, OP!  I agree with PPs that Chipotle might not be your best option for catering but for different reasons.  

    First, there isn't a lot of customization available.  Their own website says that even their largest spread is pretty locked in and you are limited to their options and items.  You can't, for example, order extra lettuce to give people who may dislike tacos a salad option.  So while you could offer chicken/beef/veg, Chiptole is essentially deciding that people will have two tacos or a "bowl" portion.  

    Then, there's the figuring only two tacos per person.  I'd probably want to over estimate on numbers because there are some people (like my DH) who would want another taco or two.  

    And, you are still left to provide any apps or dinner items you would want beyond their included items.  If you want more than chips and salsa during cocktail hour, you've got to provide them separately.  Same with any additional buffet items and dessert.

    Add to that you have to do your own set up, and it may be cheaper to consider another vendor - I think MobKaz has good ideas about someplace like Panera, or you could consider a Mexican restaurant willing to do more customization.

  • PROS:  Inherently, it's not a horrible idea.  I don't think it's necessarily tacky, and I actually know plenty of people who would welcome KFC at a wedding over what is thought of as a traditional wedding dinner, so Chipotle is NBD.  Even my friends who are the pickiest of eaters as well as those with dietary restrictions (dairy-free, gluten-free) could find something to eat at Chipotle, so long as you provided hard and soft shells and the option for bowls rather than doing burritos and stick with chicken and steak rather than barbacoa.  While the recent bad press and outbreaks may make people feel a little sketchy, this might in fact be the perfect time to eat at Chipotle because very well may be hyper-aware and taking extraordinary measures to ensure food safety (sort of like after the red card hacking at Target, it was probably the safest place to use your card because the FBI and numerous security agencies were all up in there). 

    CONS:  Like PPs mentioned, you're still stuck for sides and if you're doing a cocktail hour then food for that unless you're just doing chips and salsa.  And that's probably fine - people just need to not be hungry, they don't need to gorge themselves.  But honestly, for $13.50/person, you could probably get a lot more bang for your buck if you scout around (unless you're in NYC, LA, or Chicago, and even then there might be deals). 

    For example, we have a crazy delicious family owned Italian Restaurant that offers a pasta, two meatballs, salad, and breadsticks for $7.95pp (less if you have over 100 people), and they deliver and rent you the equipment for a very affordable fee.  Another family owned Mexican restaurant (well regarded in my neighborhood) offers items a la carte, by the tray, or they have a taco bar for $6.15pp, taco and enchilada bar for $6.25pp, or fajita bar for $9.55pp and delivers for only $25.  Another family owned restaurant that offers a wide variety (American and Italian) has 18 packages starting at $9.00, 10 of them under $13.50pp and all include cake or cookies, a salad or relish tray, and sides in addition to the main.  And the fancy pants Greek restaurant that is a well-regarded wedding venue in my city also does catering, with a buffet they will deliver for 10.95pp that gives a few different options.

    I think if you shop around some more, you're going to find a much better value than Chipotle.
  • I'm big for sentiment, but I think PP have given you lots to think about. Have you considered holding a rehearsal dinner (if you are having one) at Chipotle instead? It could pull in your history but not be at the main event.
  • downtondivadowntondiva member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited February 2016
    I wouldn't say say serving Chipotle at your wedding is trashy (though I assume you're not having a very formal wedding, because I'll admit it would be an odd choice for that). However, it is true that there are people out there who don't like or, even more importantly, can't eat that kind of food. The reason a lot of the catering options for weddings are so similar is because they're trying to appeal to/accommodate as many people as possible. It may not be exciting, but it does make sense. 

    If you're really set on incorporating Chipotle into your wedding, I'd suggest having them cater your rehearsal dinner, or if your wedding is going late enough and it's in your budget, use it as a late night snack sort of thing. But I wouldn't do it for dinner at the wedding. Chipotle is not for everyone, and since they've been having problems lately, some people may not be comfortable eating their food for a while. Don't risk leaving your wedding guests in the lurch for dinner.  

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