Whether you are planning for a Wedding Event, Corporate Event, or Social Event, choosing your event style can be challenging ; however, gaining knowledge of your various options can simplify your choice. Choosing the food service style of your event is much easier if you understand the correct terminology. Let’s take a look at your options.
Plated Dinner Service
Plated dinner service is ideal if you are envisioning a formal evening. There are options of allowing your guest to make their choice by sending them RSVP cards which they will choose and return the card to you. You will create a spread sheet that shows the guest name, table they are sitting at and their food choice. Now you have another job…You need to create placecards with the guest name, table number and a symbol for their choice of food. Each guest will then place the card at their seat. This allows the wait staff to know which meal each guest has chosen. Your other option for a plated dinner service is doing a duo plate…No extra work for you.
Your food cost will be a little less for the plated dinner service but the staffing cost maybe higher.
A Good Thought: The place card is very important for the serving staff to easily know who has chosen which meal. You can use any symbol that goes with your theme of the evening…BUT do make it easy for the staff to see.
Family-Style Dinner Service
Family Style is similar to a plated dinner service, with the added benefit of allowing guest to interact. Large serving platters are placed on each table for guests to fill their own plates. For the “picky” guest this style allows them to choose. Food costs tend be a little higher.
A Good Thought: It is important to keep in mind that this style will require more space on each dinner table to accommodate the various platters and dishes.
Buffets (or as we like to call them Tablescape Buffet)
A tablecape buffet features a design to complement the theme of the evening with candle light, greenery or floral pieces. Hopefully you will find more caterers using beautiful bowls and platters to serve the food and NOT chafers. Staff will constantly be replacing the platters to ensure the food is hot and fresh. Guest should be invited to the tablescape buffet by table to ensure there are NO long lines.
A Good Thought: It’s an excellent idea to have the salads served at the table before the guests are seated so guest have something to nibble on as they wait for their turn in the buffet line.
Food stations have become very popular for wedding receptions as well as corporate events. This allows you to share your favorite foods with your family and friends. There are times where you want a more relax feel and will have stations open at the same time as guest are dancing.
A Good Thought: You want to make sure you have enough staff to remove the empty plates as each station will have its own vessel