10 Nov Let the Food Fly
Say, you are in the midst of planning your perfect event and you have a vision for the style of food that you want to serve. Each style of service greatly impacts on the flow and energy of your day. Here are 4 of the most popular types of service with pros & cons to help you make the right decision for you and your guests.
1. The Buffet- the standard Buffet is a great way to offer your guests many options without breaking the bank. The Buffet is set up and guests come at their leisure to select their choice in cuisine So, they can choose exactly what they want which is great. There is a low to no service level here though so keep that in mind. Its a bit more casual so consider that as well when making this choice. Also keep in mind that though you may save on staffing here, you will probably balance that as you’ll need more food to accommodate your hungry guests. Grazing Guests will also take longer in the line, you have to estimate that 100 guests may take up to 30-40 minutes to be served. Guests that serve themselves will typically take more so the kitchen has to account for that. The worst thing for your event would be to run out of food.
2. Presented Buffet- This type of service is a fusion of the standard buffet & a seated service. With this selection the buffet is manned by a chef and service staff actually creating each plate. Benefit, your Kitchen can count out exactly what your needs are while being mindful to plan up 10% or so to accommodate any return guests. This speeds up the line and 100 guests can be served in about 15 minutes. Also, if plate presentation is important to you, as each plate is created as your guests arrive by the team, this can give an some aesthetic continuity between your food and decor.
3. Seated Service- Ah, your event is more formal and you want your guests experience to be at the highest level. You get the same advantage of presentation with the presented buffet but staff comes to your tables
4. Stations- I Love love love stations, and they are hot right now. What better way to create an eclectic menu and serve your guests completely unique cuisines. This type of service require a chef per station as well as staff to back them. Guests are invited up 2 tables at a time and have the option of going to one station or both. I just finished creating a fun Russian/ New Orleans style menu with a couple which is really cool because each of their cultures was represented with some really tasty offering. Service can take a bit longer but this type of buffet is usually geared for a more casual event.one by one in unison. I recommend 1 staff per 15 guests for this type of service, so for 100 guests 6.5 shifts. This allows for two teams of three and a runner just getting plates for guests who change their minds or have moved, it happens. Assuming all guests get exactly what is expected, service should take about the same 15 minutes..
If you’re still not sure, talk to your caterer- they will let you know what types of food will work best for the style and service level you are considering- happy planning!