The guests have been invited. The RSVP slips are in. Now all you have to do is take in a final count of the number of guests and then decide on the amount of food needed to satisfy them. It is in here though that the host faces the most potent question. Will you want to be the host who runs out of food for all the guests? Or do you want to be the “over-order, over-pay and then throw over leftovers” kind of host? No matter which you choose both turn out vile for you.
On one situation you lose your repute, on the other you lose your money. So how exactly do you walk away being the perfect host? How do you map out your party and its needs? Here is how:-
First Things first
When trying to gauge the food amounts for any event, first you need to ask yourself a few questions:-
- How many guests are supposed to be attending
- What is the type of event you are planning
- How long is the event supposed to last
These are stepping stones to benchmark any catering event. If you are looking to schedule food and drinks for any event, these basic questions almost always will take you through. Now it is common sense that any business cocktail party that lasts few hours will surely need much less food and drinks than a full-day event. Once you have fully defined the event, you can start working with the caterer to figure out how much food is needed and then go on to design the menu.
Quick Catering Tips for any event
- If having just an evening function is your plan, with no dinner following, plan on at least having 10-15 pieces per person. Keep the rounds going; especially if it is a buffet.
- If pre-dinner appetizers are your plan then the pieces can be reduced to 3-5 pieces per person.
- Or if you are planning to have a mid-day function with a meal following, offer 1-3 pieces per person.
Plan about 3 rounds per person. Coffee drinkers will go for an average of one cup every 1.3 hours.
- Plan on 1-3 servings per person.
- Offer one slice of tart, cake or pastry or 4 oz. of a creamy dessert like mousse. For a large variety its best to serve smaller portions.
- Coffee consumption peaks once dessert is served.
- On an average people tend to take 2 beverages. Coffee, tea or juice will suffice.
- The main entrée should be served about 5 oz per person, along with two sides that include bread. Fruits make an excellent breakfast dessert. Per person the availability must be about 3-5 pieces. Just one cup or less of fruit salad will also suffice.
- For pastries it is best to plan on 2 pieces per person.
- For hors d’oeuvres, having 2- 4 per person ready will suffice
- Follow it by a main entrée of about 5 oz with 2-3 sides, including a dessert and a starch.
- Add in to this, a selection of drinks like beer, pop, lemon water etc.
- Sandwiches must be determined at 1-2 per person.
- Plan 3-5 hors d’oeuvres per person, depending on the total number of courses.
- Add in small portions of salad, bread or soup.
- Plan on a main entrée together with 2-3 sides (5-7 oz) with beans, pasta or veggies.
- Always have enough water available along with other beverages.
Yes definitely, the last word in the game is always what your caterer has got to say. Keep no stone unturned; ask as many questions to your caterer. After all, your money can’t be put at stake and it is only knowledge that guides you to spend rightly.