We launched MiumMium.com on Dec. 12, 2015. Since day one, we have served thousands of meals across the world, from Los Angeles to Milan, Montreal to Bali. Our policy is clear; the price of the chefs needs to be fully transparent.
The quotes given by the MiumMium Chefs must include everything: Chef's time, transportation, grocery shopping, food costs, preparation, cooking, service, cleaning and taxes . Only the tip remains discretionary and is never requested.
To get to $49.84, we calculated the price of all the reservations made on the site and divided the sum by the number of clients we have served. The cheapest meals were priced between $20 and $30 p.p. and consisted of brunches (around 5% of our business) and light lunch. The most expensive were 7-course meals served in the largest US and European cities.
On average the chefs fed 8.5 guests for a total amount of $423.64; and this is how we get to a price of 49.84$ per person.
What's interesting is to realize that the price of a personal chef is similar, if not lower, than the price of a three-course meal in a good restaurant...and remember, this amount doesn’t take into consideration the savings realized on wine, parking, and a babysitter!
Simply because we mix up what is a Personal Chef with what is a Caterer. A Personal Chef is a cook, or a chef, who works in a restaurant and offers his services during his free time to generate additional income and meet new and interesting people. Believe me, it is much more fun to have a glass of wine with the guests of a bachelorette party for 3 hours than working in an overheated kitchen for 10... for more money. A caterer is someone who owns a catering business.
If the Private Chef is the Airbnb, well the Caterer is the Hotel. Like everyone running a business, the Caterer faces fixed costs such as rent and payroll. For the same reasons a hotel room is more expensive than renting an Airbnb, a caterer services will be pricier than a chef.
Historically caterers were servicing large events, such as weddings or corporate functions. With the rise of the demand for Personal Chefs, the catering industry saw an opportunity to increase its revenues by entering the market. However, the caterers continue to carry the same heavy cost structure; which explains the price difference between the two.
A search of the most popular Catering companies operating in Montreal, (MiumMium's largest market with close to 200 chefs servicing the city) shows the following price structure:
Price p.p.: $50 x 8
Cost for the Chef: Included
Price p.p.: $48 x 8
Cost for the Chef: $200
Caterer's prices are at least 50% more expensive than the cost of hiring an independent Personal Chef.
The good news is that we expect the spread between both providers to shrink as time passes and the Catering industry adapts to the emergence of chef marketplace platforms. Like hotels gradually evolved to compete against Airbnb.com by dropping their prices and offering rooms on vacation rental platforms, Caterers are adjusting their offers and have started listing their services on marketplaces.
Today, it may be difficult to differentiate a Private Chef's website from a caterer's website. To avoid any surprises, always ask for the full price of your dining experience before entering into an agreement.
…in general, Caterers prices are at least 50% more expensive than a true Personal Chef…
When hiring a Chef to come and cook for a dinner party in your home, the quote you received should always include:
Shopping time and cost of the ingredients.
“In your home” cooking.
Be certain to discuss with the chef if plates, utensils and glasses are included. Usually they are not, however, the chef will show up with his knives, pans and cutting board.
Tip should not be included in the price and should be left at the discretion of the client. In average, when pleased with the experience, a tip of 15% shows your appreciation for the chef's work.
…be certain to discuss with the chef if plates, utensils and glasses are included…
Communicate with more than one chef.
Read independent reviews from past clients when available.
Never give more than a 50% deposit ahead.
State from start the dietary restrictions and food allergies of your guests. The chef will design his menu around it.
Establish a directing line for your meal, are you looking for local flavours? A seafood feast or some steaks on the b.b.q? Than, let the chef present a menu.
Avoid all surprises by asking what is included in the price in writing.
Hiring a Private Chef is truly something unique. Having a chef to come and cook for you in the comfort of your home or when travelling abroad is all about the experience. It gives you the opportunity to share a special moment with your guests without having to spend time cooking or cleaning. You can learn a few cooking techniques or ask for a full blown cooking class, while having a glass of wine with your friends and the best: you have nothing to worry about; the chef takes care of everything.
…always ask the details of the price quoted…