(Closed) Caterer Advice!

posted 10 years ago in Food
Post # 3
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

We are still planning our wedding (and in fact, we have not even booked our caterer, but we have talked to lots), so take this for what it’s worth (maybe nothing?):

I had one caterer tell us that for a buffet for 300, we’d need (at least) two tables with two servers at each, but the reason was not for portion control, it was to keep the line moving as quickly as possible.  

Another caterer indicated that we wouldn’t have any "servers" at the buffet, but there would be people watching to replace things as they became low ("runners" I am guessing).   

My gut reaction is that the amount of service they’re advising for only 125 people seems excessive… but I don’t know for sure!  It’s just my feeling.

Post # 4
752 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

Hi Leaver! I’d say that from everyone I’ve spoken to, one server per fifty people has been the standard that I’ve heard. Three per table on two tables seems excessive to me. Have you tried telling the caterer that you’re not as concerned with portion control as you are with staying in your budget?

Personally, I think "portion control" sounds like one of those BS justifications that vendors use to try to force you to spend more money. Kind of like a sketchy bridal salon claiming that the designer requires that their labels be removed so that you don’t know who made a particular dress or what it should cost. Total bull! 

I’d be wary and ask to speak with former clients that this caterer has worked for. Ask them about the number of servers they had for their guest counts, and find out whether they thought it was necessary or excessive. 

Good luck!

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