“Food, in the end, in our own tradition, is something holy. It is not about nutrients and calories. It is about sharing. It is about honesty. It is about identity.” –Louise Fresco
Part of what makes any event successful is what you serve to your guests.
In fact, it can be argued that catering plays an integral role in contributing to the success or failure of any event. For this reason, planning a catered menu that is sure to wow and impress guests would put undue pressure on you. After all, you are not only considering what type of food you should serve, but you are also looking for the best possible affordable catering service that would offer you exemplary food and beverage. In this regard, how can you ensure that you can give your guests an extraordinary experience? One that would keep them talking for days? Well, for starters a delicious meal should be in order.
Unfortunately, most catered events are notorious for serving subpar food which can really diminish the overall experience. You should not fall victim to this scenario of serving less than stellar food, and there are ways of preventing just that.
If you wish to ensure that you provide your guests with an excellent menu and have an event that stands out, here are some of the things you ought to consider:
1.) Know your guest profile
Before choosing a menu, know who you are inviting first. What is the profile of your guests? And in relation to that, what sort of events do you think they will be attending throughout the year? More often than not, by knowing what they do, you can already tell what events they may attend. In this regard, you would already have a subtle hint of what they might always be served at these events. In any case, some of the things you should take note of are the professional level or your guests, the frequency of which they attend similar events, ethnic background and where they reside. From there you can customize a catered menu that will suitably delight them.
2.) Know their preferences
Of course, anyone would enjoy a meal that is filled with their preferred food and favorites. In this regard, it would be best if you took some time to understand the general profile of your guest list. With this in consideration, you would be able to prepare menu options better. However, to narrow it down, consider that older groups might choose a milder menu. Fitness and health buffs would favor a menu with vegetarian options as well as seafood while younger or middle-aged attendees would be more adventurous and may prefer spicy food. The key here is to take into consideration what your guests would enjoy the most depending on the type of event you are hosting.
3.) Provide menu choices
Unfortunately, no matter how much you try to anticipate your guests’ food preferences and plan your catered meal or buffet around it, you cannot realistically expect to please everyone. With this in mind, event planners should at least plan to offer several entrees or at least have a menu choice to ensure that guests will be satisfied with the meal offerings.
4.) Anticipate special needs
Know that allergies are a thing and several of your guests will probably have it which is all the more reason why you should offer a varied catered menu. In this way, they would have a lot of choices and would not be restricted to eating one dish just because they are allergic to the other–or worse, restricted from eating at all because you only served one particular dish—which they happen to be allergic to. In this regard, it is your responsibility as an event planner to know if there are dietary preferences and concerns to consider. Find out if any of your guests have a special dietary need so that the catering management can address this prior to the day of your event.