Frequently Asked Hog & Spit Roast Questions

How do I choose a Spit Roast Company?

The majority are part time "weekend caterers". When you call, if an answer phone greets you, move on until you find a full time caterer that answers your call and gets back to your e-mail enquiry within an hour or so.

How long does a Spit Roast Pig take to cook?

Our machines will cook 10kgs of Pork in 1 hour.

How long does a Spit Roast Lamb take to cook?

Our machines will cook 10kgs of Lamb in 1 hour.

I spoke to one Hog Roast Company who said they would bring a gazebo FOC?

Professional caterers will require shelter from the wind, rain and sun, arranged prior to your event. Or alternatively ask your caterer to arrange a proper catering tent to be brought on site.

How much does a Hog or Lamb Roast cost?

The cost of a Hog or Lamb Roast depends on the size of the animal and how many cooking, carving, and serving hours are required.

Is it necessary to refrigerate the Pig or Lamb?

The law states that meat has to be chilled. If your Hog Roast arrives in a car or tatty old van, seriously consider sending it back.

What is the difference between CE approved spit roasters & the illegal machines that are being used all over the UK?

Look around the Internet to see pictures of burnt pigs proudly presented. It is common knowledge that the converted wheel barrows either under or over cook…risky business.

Why is there a big difference in catering prices?

Most ’one man bands’ operate at weekends for some "extra cash". Their pre-prepared food is often bought at the local "cash & carry", or at worst is warmed up meat from previous catering jobs. There is no back up if something goes wrong or an illness occurs. "If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is".

Should I visit the caterer and see what facilities they have and get a feel of how professional they are?

If they are not an established caterer, then yes. Either visit their advertised address or check their premises out on Google Earth. If their website does not have an address, or they always use an answer phone, they are not serious – don’t touch them with a barge pole. Especially if there is no evidence of a fridge van being owned or used.

I’ve heard Spit Roast and Wedding Caterers don’t need refrigeration?

There seems to be a lack of refrigeration by outside catering persons. I understand 95% are happy to pre-cook food and warm up on the day, but reheated food can be dangerous and tastes bland.

Should I send in a deposit to book my catering?

Every year thousands of clients make enquires for event catering. If you have got a quote from a professional caterer, book straight away and pay a deposit. The caterer knows where they are in respect to bookings and so do you. If you leave it for weeks and go back the chances are that your caterer will already be booked up or have several clients ’in the pipeline’.

What if my numbers change?

Costs associated with outside catering such as labour, produce, fuel, transport, taxes, administration, and general running costs for each job represent a big chunk of your quote. Guest number reductions only reduce produce costs.

My caterer has let me down after they said they had me booked in –?

Some clients agree to book but fail to send deposits. Confirmed bookings are accompanied by a deposit payment. That seals the contract between you and the caterer. We insist on a deposit with booking. As soon as your deposit is received we will allocate that date and staff to your event.

I’ve seen Hog Roast chefs frying meat on a hot plate, why?

With the cheaper catering the meat isn’t properly cooked, therefore they finish cooking the raw meat off on a hot plate which makes it tough – so it seems pointless having a Hog Roast when you are having a "fry up". I saw one guy arrive at a street venue in Bristol with a pig he cooked the day before, he carved the cold meat and fried it on the hot plate.

Can the pig be pre-cooked?

We are coming across pre-cooked pig enquiries more and more. With established food hygiene laws I can’t see how warmed up pigs can be served safely by a "cash & carry" caterer. The meat core must make 70°C for at least 2 minutes, and hold at +63°C until serving. We are geared up with Turbo ovens and blast chilling equipment if we need to chill meat. We have our own meat storage walk in fridges that hold meat at -1°C for up to 30 hogs and lambs prior to delivery to your venue.

Do you take credit cards for hog roasts?

With the banks in such a turmoil trying to claw back their losses via merchant service charges of up to 5%, we have to exclude the likelihood of accepting credit card payments for the time being. We do continue accepting cheque, BACS, direct bank transfer, or cash.

How will I know you will show up on the day?

We are a family run business established for many years. We recognise the importance of each event and have systems in place to confirm your order. We also have standby staff available should any member call in sick. We have an office of 5 people who have copies of each booking in their electronic diaries. We all work together as a team and discuss the work we have every week.

How many clients call you after being "let down"?

As the spit roasting bubble gets bigger it attracts more and more unscrupulous people looking to make a ’quick buck’. Last year we received 83 calls from distressed clients either let down by a caterer or let down by a spit roast man gone bust. Backing a one man band seems to be risky when you need teamwork to run efficiently and do a good job.

How long does it take to cater an outside event with a Chef & Assistant?

Professional catering up to 100 guests, taking into consideration preparation, loading, travelling, unloading, cooking, carving, returning, cleaning & washing van & items - 32 man hours ’start-to-finish’ to cater professionally & safely.

Will your Chef and Assistant serve our food?

The assistant will serve your meat. The chef will be carving or preparing other courses if booked. Front of House plate waiting is not done by our trained Chef & Assistant team.

Is there support with your DIY option?

Comprehensive instructions are included with booking confirmation, along with contact telephone numbers.

Is Gas included with your DIY option?

The spit roaster runs on LPG gas. Enough gas will be provided to cook your meat.