dinner options and rsvp'ing

posted 3 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Wording for RSVP/Dinner options
    Write out the Menu exactly so people know exactly what they are getting : (2 votes)
    7 %
    Keep it brief , but enough so they know what to expect : (17 votes)
    57 %
    Just write chicken , fish , vegetarian , beef : (9 votes)
    30 %
    Give them PB & j and save a ton of money on the whole thing ! : (2 votes)
    7 %
  • Post # 3
    Member
    173 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: March 2014

    We kept the actual card as chicken, beef, etc. but included the full description on a details card (or could put it on the website too if you don’t have extra cards to spare).

    Post # 4
    Member
    9949 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2013

    We did icons (a cow, a chicken, and an eggplant) on the RSVP cards, and then provided descriptions on the informational insert.

    Post # 5
    Member
    1768 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    I would do a variation on what you have – just put beef, chicken, etc on the RSVP card, and a small note at the bottom that says “for a description of entree choices, please visit our wedding website”. A friend of mine did that and I really appreciated it – normally I’m fish or beef all the way, but when I read the descriptions I opted for the veggie entree.

    Post # 6
    Member
    9949 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2013

    Ours looked like this:

    Post # 7
    Member
    11379 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: April 2012

    @asb983:  i think what you have is good.  there is no need for full description of the menu item.

    Post # 8
    Member
    1681 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    @asb983:  I would leave it how you have it. I wouldn’t just say “Chicken” because it’s too vague, but a full menu description isn’t necessary either.

    Post # 9
    Member
    10748 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: February 2014

    I did pictures of a cow, a fish and a carrot on mine with a full description on the website. 

    Post # 10
    Member
    1649 posts
    Bumble bee

    @asb983:  The following is not actually an answer to your question, so please ignore it and certainly do not take it as aimed at you. But I am confronted by that fallacey of “begging the question”, and am enough of a pedant that I cannot just let it go.

    First, of course, is that pre-printed R.s.v.p. cards are not in the very best formal form in the first place, since  guests might be presumed to own their own stationery and stamps and know how to right a polite reply to an invitation. But that is beside the point.

    The second concern is that lading down pre-filled plates in front of guests, with different meals presented to different people, is not how things are done at an elegant private party. It is how things are done in the convention industry, since the people being served are not so much guests as paying customers and there’s a profit margin that most convention organizers are trying to maximize. And I do “get it” that most brides also have an eye on the bottom line and need to make some of the same compromises on proper table-service, and that most guests have developed a sense of entitlement to choice respecting their meals.

    But the fact remains that at a social dinner, the hostess — not the guests — decides what to serve. Since she is obliged to know her guests at least at a superficial level, she should have in mind which guests have obvious dietary concerns and ensure that her overall menu includes items they can eat that will be kosher or halal or vegan or peanut-free (because realisitically, in this day and age, if you have a hundred guests the PBJ option will cause at least one guest to go into anaphylactic shock). And then, having designed the entire menu, the hostess has her guests presented with a bare plate, and are offered their choice of dishes from a platter or tureen — dished up under the guest’s direction by a waiter, if service a la Russe is being used; or offered by a fellow guest from serving dishes set in the middle of the table if service courtesan is being used. Detailed menus set on the table for the guests’ perusal allow the Jewish, Muslim and gluten-free guests accept the roast kid but not the caesar salad with the bacon bits; the Atkins guests and peanut-free guests accept the salad but leave the croutons on the side of their plates; and the vegans sigh with relief to see there’s a nice side dish of fassi. And there’s no stress of trying to manage a guest-list full of individual pre-ordered preferences.

    Many brides go to great effort to provide very elegant meals; and then serve them up in a mass-production commercialized style a la convention industry, which detracts from the general air of elegance that the menu choice would otherwise achieve. I know that the commercial style is more familiar, both to brides and their guests who nowadays go to more professional-association receptions than social receptions, and to caterers who know where the money is to be made. And that being the case I do understand that, while commercialization is not an indicator of formality and in many cases is quite the opposite, sometimes it is the only style of service that can be managed. And if that is the case, by all means put a brief name for the meal choice on the response card you are sending out, but still put the detailed description on a menu on the tables so that guests with actual dietary restrictions can safeguard their health by choosing what to eat and what to leave.

     

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