Post # 1
I know this question has been asked many times before, but I am starting to plan my reception and I honestly cannot choose between a plated dinner and a buffet. With my venue, the plated dinner and buffet cost about the same; however, you get a lot more with a buffet.
For example, if I choose a plated dinner, I can get two options (three including a veggie option) with the more expensive option being about $25/pp. If I choose a buffet, I can pay $25/pp, but I could essentially have 4+ main entree choices (chicken, beef, fish, ham/pork, and veggie). The main entrees and sides would be the same as the plated options, the buffet just allows you to have 4+ for the same price as two plated options. I personally like the buffet option because it gives you more choices and I like the idea of not having to keep track of everyone’s menu choice. But I feel like having a buffet makes the reception less “nice.”
So, bees, what do you think?
Post # 3
We have the same situation. Plated and buffet cost the same but soo much more food with buffet. For us it was a no brainer, buffet all the way! As a guest I prefer buffets much more than plated meals.
Post # 4
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
@casey219: Wedding food is pretty much all the same to me so I would prefer picking and choosing my entree and side items over being served a specific meal. Choosing between a buffet and plated dinner doesn’t really matter to most guests unless you are having a really formal wedding. It also deletes the need to have people choose their dinner on the RSVP cards.
Post # 5
1) If your wedding is more formal overall, go with the plated option. You get one less option but if it’s not a huge price difference, go with the overall ‘feel’ to your wedding.
2) I would venture that many guests (outside of the Bee) don’t have an opinion between plated and buffet. But they do have an opinion on waiting in line for food. So just make sure if you go the buffet route, you have enough stations that no one is waiting in line too long.
Post # 7
I prefer buffet. I hate alternate serve.
Post # 8
I am 100% FOR plated. It’s just my style. I think it feels more special because guests are being served. I’m also super picky about how looks on a plate, so I’ve always been anti-buffet because of the way it presents. So I would pick buffet 10/10.
Post # 9
@casey219: What is the tone of your reception? Is it a formal event or is it more casual? You should ask about the buffet and see if it’s one line or several or stations. That makes a big difference for your guests.
FI and I chose plated because of the vibe of our venue (1930s/40s style jazz club). We were pleasantly surprised to find that guests will choose from three options (steak, chicken, or butternut squash ravioli) once they are seated. It works for us, but I can say that I’ve been to buffets that were rockin.
Post # 10
I’ve always been a big fan of buffets at weddings — way before weddingbee, just as one who has attended a ton of weddings. You never know which entree really is the best until you’ve tried them all (or at least get a chance to look at them). Buffets let you do that.
I also worked in wedding catering and still think buffets are the best. Food for events is often made well ahead of time. With a plated dinner, the food is also plated well in advance and stored in a hotbox. It often leads to dishes drying out, which does not happen with a buffet. Plus, people have to wait to be served regardless– that’s just the nature of the beast when 100+ people need to eat at the same time.
Full disclore — we had a buffet for our wedding. People still rave about the food.
Post # 11
We didn’t want the formality of plated meal or food sitting out in a buffet, so we had a family-style meal. Guests had tons of options and the food came out hot and fresh!
Post # 12
As a guest, I don’t like waiting in long lines for buffets or for them to call my table. I voted plated! My FI is a foodie and grad from culinary school and he doesn’t like buffet because some food can get overcooked- so he said he only wants plated. As a hostess, plated dinner is a nice service to provide if you can afford it, and it’s the same price, so why not?
Post # 13
i have always preferred plated. i am just not a fan of buffets. i like to be served and i don’t want to be walking around with a plate of food in my hand.
@remijp: family style is a great alternative. op, you should look into that option.
Post # 14
I had the same dilemma, but went for plated in the end.
It adds to the formality of the event as you said, but there were too many cons with buffets that we couldn’t overlook:
Older/less mobile guests may have trouble with the setup, those called last to the buffet may not get to try everything available, and guests not eating at the same time. Also, my parents HATED the idea of guests lining up “like in a cafeteria or soup kitchen”, so that was a no.
The beauty of plated is that you get to sit back and be served 🙂
Post # 15
I would definitely go with plated..I don’t like standing in line and then carrying my food around when i am all dressed up..I think it is much more classy to have a plated meal. And I also think that having 3 options (together with the veggie option) is a good variety. Matter of fact that is what we are having…We have a beef (steak) option; seafood (salmon) option; and a vegeterian option. I mean I will be very surprised if people wouldn’t be able to chose something that they will like..
What are you doing with the appetizers? What are your options for that??
Post # 16
Family style is also a good option. ..I agree with people who already mentioned that….Especially if you have sitting chart..and will put close people sitting together