The best catering services in Canberra

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Temporada catering

Let Temporada restaurant come to your own home with its new catering business, Tempo. Photo: Supplied.

The most memorable part of an event is often food. Whether you’re hosting a massive sit-down meal or an intimate cocktail and canape event, you’ll want a fantastic catering company dishing up delicious produce.

Selecting a professional, experienced and imaginative catering service can make planning and managing your event much easier. Top-notch catering services will support you on every level.

In this article, we’ll outline the qualities to consider when choosing a catering service company, and share where to find the best in Canberra.

What makes a great catering service?

Many types and styles of catering service companies operate in Canberra so you have plenty of choice. With so much riding on your decision, you want to be 100 per cent sure you’ve picked the best caterer for your style of event and budget.

It can be helpful to keep the following in mind when choosing a catering service.

  • Delicious food. Food is an important part of an event, so you’ll want to select a catering service that creates dishes that look as amazing as they taste, whether canapes or large buffets.
  • Experience. Search for a catering company with the experience to enhance your event. You’ll want a company that serves on time so your event isn’t disrupted or put behind schedule.
  • Professional and polite. If you need caterers to serve food and drink to guests, check that wait staff are professional, polite and know what they’re doing. This make guests feel important and well taken care of.
  • Imaginative and flexible. Often with events, food is ‘themed’ to enhance the overall experience. You’ll need a caterer who has imagination and flair in designing menus. You’ll may well need one who can also deal with food allergies or intolerances.
  • Proactive with advice. Stuck trying to figure out how much food and drink to serve per guest? Many variables go into deciding, including if the food is hot or cold and where and when the event is. A seasoned caterer will advise on quantities, saving you from ordering too much. They’ll also advise you on wine and beverage matching.

The best catering services in Canberra

RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 20 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.

To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on RiotACT and maintain a minimum average of 4/5 stars on both Google and Facebook reviews.

Topgun Catering

Topgun Catering provides high-quality, boutique catering to the Canberra market. With a passion for food, Topgun Catering provides flexible service and is always willing to create personalised menus to suite any need, dietary requirement or occasion, Catering is available for morning teas, lunches, cocktail parties and seated fine-dining events for up to 1,000 guests.

On Google, Raltisa Dimitrova wrote, “Very good quality of food at a very good price. The food always comes very well presented.”

Tempo Catering

Temporada, the award-winning casual restaurant and bar in the CBD, first launched its catering service back in November 2020, allowing them to take their fresh and seasonal menu beyond their restaurant doors. Whether you’ve got a large corporate event or just a small dinner with some friends, Tempo Catering can tailor their services to suit your needs and help create a unique experience for you at home, at the office, or in a function space. There’s no set menu with Tempo Catering – you can choose what you’re getting from the restaurant menu!

Google reviewer Gemma Wykes recently ate at Temporada, and left the following review, An amazing culinary experience. Each course was beautifully prepared and presented. The variety and purity of flavours in each dish was exceptional.”

Hudsons Catering

Hudsons Catering provides full catering services to suit every occasions and budget. Fresh produce is prepared daily for a quality catering experience. Menus are adapted as required, including for dietary needs. Hudsons Catering caters for intimate gatherings, weddings, celebrations of life and other occasions.

On Facebook, Kylie Williams wrote, “The Mother’s Day High Tea at Albert Hall was so impressive. Our family had such a great time dancing and being entertained. The food was amazing!”

Swirl Catering

An established, professional hospitality service, Swirl Catering creates delicious, contemporary and innovative food and delivers quality, caring service. With more than a dozen menus to choose from, Swirl Catering pleases guests at government, corporate and private events and occasions. The team provides quotes promptly.

As Sally Troy wrote on Google, “I could not recommend Swirl Catering more highly – they should have 6 stars. The food was lovely and the staff were extraordinarily pleasant to deal with …”

Kitchen Witchery Catering

With more than 20 years in the catering industry, Kitchen Witchery Catering produces visually interesting food that tastes great, whether for morning teas, buffets, corporate events or major celebrations. The company services Canberra and region and provides recommendations on dietary requirements.

Katrina Summerell wrote on Google, “Kitchen Witchery is a company I have been using for personal and work catering for over three years now and they have never disappointed!”

If you’re looking for more information on catering and events in Canberra, you might like our articles on the best function venues, best event planners, best wedding venues and best florists Canberra has to offer.

Your experience with catering services in Canberra

Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback. If you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.

Have you had experience with any of the catering companies listed above? If so, share your feedback in the comments below.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I provide my caterer with my own menu?
Usually, no. Catering companies will provide you with their own catering packages and menus, so there should be something to suit your tastes. However, if some of your guests have allergies and dietary requirements, or you want to provide your own cake for a birthday celebration, then caterers should be able to accommodate those needs.
Do caterers prepare food on-site?
This depends on your venue and the caterer's menu. If your venue has kitchen facilities that your caterer has access to, then they will be able to prepare hot food on-site. That being said, caterers may prefer not to do this for convenience's sake - cooking hot food for a large group of people can prove difficult. Talk to your caterer and find out what they're comfortable with.
How do caterers charge?
Caterers will charge you for the produce and staff wages - for a several-course meal, expect charges of $80 per person or more, as well as alcohol and occasionally cakeage if you are providing your own dessert. Caterers will usually offer fixed-price packages for events, so start with those and if you make any changes to the event, make sure your caterer is upfront about overall cost.
How can I cater cheaply?
Any rice or noodle-based cuisine is usually the cheapest food to cater - Mexican, Indian and Thai dishes are all easy to make in large quantities, and their ingredients are inexpensive to source. If your event is during the day, consider a breakfast or brunch-time event - earlier meals tend to be cheaper than lunches and dinners.
What questions should I ask my caterer?
Your top two questions should be about how the food will be prepared and served - will the caterer provide serving staff, or will there be a buffet table? Is there flexibility in the menu? Do they require any information from the venue? All of these questions should be asked at least two weeks ahead of your event.

What's Your Opinion?


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13 Responses to The best catering services in Canberra
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John J John J 2:42 pm 30 Apr 21

I hope to see Daana Catering ( https://daanacatering.com.au/ ) also in this list, their services was also great as these catering services mentioned in the article.

Elboy Elboy 9:38 am 11 Jun 19

Foodish recently catered a business function for our company. They were really good and the food was excellent and really good value. Highly recommended. This is the link to their catering page. They are a cooking school so the quality is very high and they can custom make stuff for you as well. http://www.cookingclassescanberra.com.au/index.php/catering

batmantrilogy batmantrilogy 2:19 am 10 Nov 15

Hi Louis,

Got some catering done for our office recently by http://www.edgecatering.com.au

was impressive and yummy.

zllauh zllauh 9:12 am 07 Feb 13

No Hickups when you got http://www.hudsonscatering.com.au ! Hopefully all goes well as planned 🙂

Thank you Hudsons Catering.

poetix said :

zllauh said :

crabb said :

Hudsons seconded. Have used them for several work functions and an engagement party. Always reliable, easy to deal with, reasonably priced, and the food is of good quality.

Would surely recommend http://www.hudsonscatering.com.au , They also saved our back when we had a hick up with the dates ! Also the new cafe at War Memorial is one of our fav spots .

They are excellent, I agree.

By the way, it’s hiccup. A hick up is a person visiting from the country.

poetix poetix 1:30 pm 08 Jan 13

zllauh said :

crabb said :

Hudsons seconded. Have used them for several work functions and an engagement party. Always reliable, easy to deal with, reasonably priced, and the food is of good quality.

Would surely recommend http://www.hudsonscatering.com.au , They also saved our back when we had a hick up with the dates ! Also the new cafe at War Memorial is one of our fav spots .

They are excellent, I agree.

By the way, it’s hiccup. A hick up is a person visiting from the country.

crabb crabb 12:27 pm 08 Jan 13

Hudsons definitely. They’ve done work functions for us and a 50th party at home. Reliable, efficient, flexible, good range of foods. They’ve been around a long time. I was sad when they pulled out of running the restaurant at ANBG, it’s gone downhill since. Must try the War memorial cafe.

astrojax astrojax 12:03 pm 08 Jan 13

have used swirl catering [ swirlcatering.com.au ] for work functions on several occasions; always very satisfactory and i had initially had them recommended from a colleague who used them privately…

Madam Cholet Madam Cholet 10:22 am 08 Jan 13

zllauh said :

Would surely recommend http://www.hudsonscatering.com.au , They also saved our back when we had a hick up with the dates ! Also the new cafe at War Memorial is one of our fav spots .

+1 for the War Memorial cafe. Great food and fantastic prices. Great spot for kids to run around safely. Haven’t used the catering service but if the cafe reflects quality, quantity and service, then you should be fine.

zllauh zllauh 8:01 am 08 Jan 13

crabb said :

Hudsons seconded. Have used them for several work functions and an engagement party. Always reliable, easy to deal with, reasonably priced, and the food is of good quality.

Would surely recommend http://www.hudsonscatering.com.au , They also saved our back when we had a hick up with the dates ! Also the new cafe at War Memorial is one of our fav spots .

Cantily Cantily 8:08 am 03 Jan 09

A Taste of Honey does the catering for my work functions – always good food and good service. I’ve used them for years and they have never let me down.

crabb crabb 10:44 am 02 Jan 09

Hudsons seconded. Have used them for several work functions and an engagement party. Always reliable, easy to deal with, reasonably priced, and the food is of good quality.

Danman Danman 10:11 am 02 Jan 09

Aussie spit roast ?

I’m not kidding, they do an awesome job.

sepi sepi 10:09 am 02 Jan 09

Hudsons catering are reliable and nice food.

Not sure how their prices rate but the food is nice.

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