Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a private dining experience cost?

The cost depends on the menu you select, the number of people in your party, the date of your event and your location. For example, a weekday dinner party is much less expensive than a seven course tasting menu on New Year's Eve. Prices start at £40 per head for a simple three course meal and go up to £120 per head for my signature tasting menu. Some customers prefer to pay my day rate of £300 plus costs.

Do you cater to vegetarians?

Yes! Many of my regular customers are vegetarian and most of them are fans of my quinoa salad and other vegetarian specialties. I catered my first vegan wedding in 2019 and am happy to cater to any dietary preferences or requirements you have.

Do you cater to people with allergies?

During the menu discussions, I will ask you for allergy information for all diners. While I take the greatest care to avoid these allergens while preparing the food, I cannot guarantee that menu items will not contain or come into contact with allergens.

What exactly is a private dining experience?

When you book a private dining experience with Chef Arup, this is what happens: 1. You and I discuss your requirements - number of diners, date, location and, most importantly, what you would like to eat. I can cater to any style of food and almost any cuisine. 2. I create a bespoke menu for you based on your preferences and send it to you for approval. 3. I make any changes you want to the menu and we finalise it together. 4. I do all the shopping and some of the preparation in my 5* certified kitchen. 5. On the day of the event, I arrive at your home 2-3 hours before the event start time. 6. I cook the meals in your kitchen and serve them to your guests. I am happy to answer any questions about the food, the ingredients etc. 7. Once you have finished, I do the washing up, tidy the kitchen and leave you to enjoy the rest of the evening with your guests.

Do I have to make payment in advance?

Once we have finalised the menu, I ask for at least 50% payment in advance. This is to cover the cost of ingredients and my time should you need to cancel the event for any reason. I ask that you make the remaining payment when I arrive at your home on the day of the event. Many customers prefer to make the full payment in advance but I appreciate that new customers may not feel comfortable doing so.

I only have a small kitchen; can I still book you?

I have worked out of kitchens smaller than my bathroom and bigger than my house! When we have our initial call, I will ask about the size of your kitchen and the type of equipment you have (oven, stove, pots and pans). Your answers will determine how much preparation I do in advance. It may be that I only apply the finishing touches in your kitchen. Rest assured that all preparation is done in a 5* certified kitchen.

Which areas do you cover?

I am based in the London Borough of Bexley and cover a 25 mile radius from my base. This includes London and many parts of Kent, Essex, and Surrey. I am happy to travel further afield but will need to charge a travel supplement. I have catered functions as far as Lincoln and have acted as a vacation chef for families further away as well.

Do you provide wine and cocktails?

Alcohol is not included as standard as part of the private dining experience though I am happy to suggest good wine pairings for the food. Most of my customers relish being able to arrange for their own favourites rather than being restricted by a wine list. For larger functions, or at your request, I can recommend a freelance bartender.

Do you bring serving staff?

I prefer to serve the food myself as I find my customers often have questions about the ingredients, cuisine, and cooking techniques. I am passionate about food and love talking to diners - it's my favourite part of being a private chef. For bigger functions, I bring a kitchen assistant and can also arrange for wait staff.

Do you provide the crockery and cutlery?

I bring my own crockery so that I can present the meals beautifully. You will need to arrange your own cutlery, glassware, and table decorations. For larger events, I can arrange these on request.

How much control do I have over the menu?

Total control! I design each menu in consulation with the customer and no two events have the same menu. If you are a spice-loving carnivore and your guest is a vegetarian with a less adventurous palate, I can design a menu to please you both. Once you have approved the menu, no further changes can be made (other than changing the number of diners).

How early should I book you?

Because each menu is customized to your tastes, you should ideally make your booking at least a week in advance. This gives me time to consult with you about your likes and dislikes and create something you will love. I can sometimes accomodate short notice bookings, so please contact me even if you have less than a week available.