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Re: On catering and other food issues

I read from the minutes some caterers might want to receive a written
request for an offer. 
Once we have more clarity on the number of people and special
requirements (e.g. vega) I can send such request using Linux-
Aktivaattori's paper.


On Sun, 2005-02-13 at 18:20 +0200, Lars Wirzenius wrote:
> According to Andreas, we should have 20-25 thousand euros for food. We
> expect to have about 80 people until the 10th, and about 200 after that.
> The goal is to feed those people three times a day: breakfast, lunch,
> and dinner. Snacks and night food are not included; everyone will have
> to pay for those themselves.
> There are so many meals that the average price per meal is not high.
> Therefore, fancy food is out of the question. Simple food that takes
> away the hunger, yet is nice to eat, is the goal. Only water and juice
> ("mehu") for drinks, for example, not a variety of soft drinks and
> colas.
> Some random points:
> * preparing food for this many people is almost certainly the work of
> professionals; it may be able to get a cheaper price (read: more food)
> if we can provide helpers, e.g., for serving, carrying things, and other
> thing
> * we need to gather information about allergies and diets (including
> vegetarianism and veganism); any competent catering service will be able
> to handle these with ease, as long as they hear about them in time, say
> a month before the event
> * having a professional kitchen on the premises would be excellent; 
> having to transport the food is possible, but not a good option
> * we need some place to actually eat the food, which should be separate
> from the hacking areas and such (too much risk of hardware damage)
> * plates and glasses may have to be rented; paying for paper cups and
> plates and plastic utensils may be cheaper, even if it ecologially
> unsound
> * cleaning and washing dishes and so on will probably cost extra; we
> should arrange it outselves if at all possible
> * July is high season for catering services, as most marriages happen
> then; arranging things early is good
> I have called the following catering service, which is a small company
> that I happened to meet last year in another context. They seem willing
> to take the job, but other places should also be called: Pitopalvelu
> Lagerblom, 041 530 27 77, Petra Lagerblom, petra.lagerblom@welho.com
> (mention my name if you contact them so that they are not confused).
> They, like all companies, will probably want to have a written request
> for offer (request for quote?), where we tell them what we want,
> exactly, and they respond with what they can provide, and for how much.
> Other places to call: 
> * All other catering services, obviously. Some normal restaurants also
> do catering outside their premises. Calling or mailing them to check
> whether they are interested at all in this kind of even is probably a
> good idea. Calling several places before sending any written requests
> for offers is good, makes it easier to write the requests with all the
> necessary details.
> * Restaurant schools in the Helsinki area, but also further away.
> Schools are probably closed in July, but (according to my sister, who is
> a professional cook) they often have students who have failed a course
> during the semester and need to do some extra credits in order to
> graduate or continue the school in the autumn.
> * Possibly, though this is pretty far fetched, calling the "Otaniemi
> gourmet society" that I have heard about. They're tech students, so they
> might be willing to help, but I doubt they're competent to run the whole
> show. I don't have contact information for them, sorry.
> If there is going to be a gala dinner, it may have to be negotiated
> separately, or possibly as part of the package. I don't know if the sum
> mentioned at the top includes the gala dinner. Serving alcohol at the
> gala dinner may be a problem, but we can probably do without.

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