BabsandBear
Expert October 2018

Buffet vs Plated

BabsandBear, on December 18, 2017 at 8:57 PM

Posted in Wedding Reception 62

Hey Guys, so I'm not sure if this a dumb question or not, but I was wondering if it's better to have a plated 3 course meal vs buffet style. It's going to be Italian food and yes it will cost more per person to have it plated. But that doesn't bother us. Some things on the menu are a choice of...

Hey Guys, so I'm not sure if this a dumb question or not, but I was wondering if it's better to have a plated 3 course meal vs buffet style. It's going to be Italian food and yes it will cost more per person to have it plated. But that doesn't bother us. Some things on the menu are a choice of Chicken Marsala or Palermo Steak, Cheese Tortellini or Vegetable Lasagna and a choice of Garden Salad or Cesar.

We are going for a more elegant style of a wedding and I was wondering if plated would match better with that sort of theme or if I should have my guests be able to serve themselves with however much food they'd please.

62 Comments

  • FutureMrs.L
    Master September 2018
    FutureMrs.L ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Same Smiley sad

    Buffets in my area are actually more expensive. Our cocktail hour all have an abundance of hors d'oeuvres, and we have appetizers, salads, and entrees for dinner time. Plus dessert bar and cake. Smiley smile

    • Reply
  • Must Love Cats
    Master October 2017
    Must Love Cats ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    Well whatever you decide to do just make sure you and your guests are well fed. Though at the same token you may not eat like me and my husband. The venue actually gave us quite a few leftovers from that night thank goodness. So with that said especially if you have leftovers from the buffet most venues will package them up so you can bring them home or to the hotel which came in handy in our situation because my husband was starving when we got back.
    • Reply
  • Meg
    Dedicated February 2018
    Meg ·
    • Flag
    We chose buffet. We were also told buffet saves on time too rather than plated having to wait for everyone to be served what they chose.
    • Reply
  • muriel
    Champion June 2018
    muriel ·
    • Flag

    If you choose buffet, you can still have a line on the rsvp card for Dietary Restictions. You can work with the venue to ensure that these are accommodated within the buffet or a separate plate is available.

    • Reply
  • BabsandBear
    Expert October 2018
    BabsandBear ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Yes, we will have some dishes that will be made separate for my mom who has celiac's disease, my bridesmaid who is lactose intolerant and my sister and her bf who are vegan.

    On our wedding website rsvp we also ask who else may have diet restrictions. We don't want anyone being unfed at our wedding.

    • Reply
  • firstoneat56
    Master August 2017
    firstoneat56 ·
    • Flag
    If you are truly having an elegant wedding than plated is the way to go. There’s nothing elegant about standing in line to get your food.
    • Reply
  • BabsandBear
    Expert October 2018
    BabsandBear ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    That's true, and they told us for the dietary ones that it wouldn't be an additional charge (which was very nice of them).


    • Reply
  • BabsandBear
    Expert October 2018
    BabsandBear ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    That's the kind of mindset I'm at right now.

    • Reply
  • Mrsbdg
    Champion August 2017
    Mrsbdg ·
    • Flag

    Plated is more elegant, generally. We chose staffed buffet due to our budget but if money isn't a concern a plated meal is a great choice.

    • Reply
  • BabsandBear
    Expert October 2018
    BabsandBear ·
    • Flag

    Yeah just spoke to FH and he would like to do a more plated style vs a buffet style. He's looking for more like a formal dinner party vibe, so I will ask my caterer about the portion sizes and go from there. Thanks for all your help you guys.

    • Reply
  • HowCo Industries
    VIP September 2018
    HowCo Industries ·
    • Flag
    Ok, weird answer. With the exception of one, I cannot remember what was served at any wedding I've ever been to. I always remember if it was plated or buffet though. I tend to prefer plated at more formal events.
    ** The exception to the rule was surf and turf at The Biltmore. Probably one of the most expensive meals I've ever had.
    • Reply
  • Charli
    Expert May 2018
    Charli ·
    • Flag
    Plated seems more elegant but I prefer buffet. I'm a little weird and I don't like for my food to touch. I would prefer to go up to the buffet multiple times to make sure that my food isn't touching than to have everything mixed together and having to eat around the touching parts.
    • Reply
  • Orchids
    Master March 2018
    Orchids ·
    • Flag

    I'm on team buffet, alas my venue only offers a plated dinner for small groups so that's what we're doing.

    • Reply
  • MiniMe
    Savvy September 2016
    MiniMe ·
    • Flag

    I prefer plated meals and think they are more elegant. We had more of a dinner party style reception, so plated was a no-brainer for us.

    • Reply
  • Chandell
    Dedicated August 2018
    Chandell ·
    • Flag

    We are doing buffet i feel i get my moneys worth since the venue is all inclusive. I also rather people plate themselves.

    • Reply
  • Susan
    VIP December 2017
    Susan ·
    • Flag
    I'm team plated, always. Every wedding with a buffet I've ever been to, someone has always tripped and spilled food. (And there is nothing elegant about trying to dodge spilled spaghetti!)
    Ask your guests on your RSVP for their meal choice and any dietary restrictions. Then use escort cards and indicate their meal choice on it (we just used coloured star stickers) and gice your caterer a list of who has what and what table they are at. We had 170 at our wedding, and no problems with this setup, including accommodating a variety of allergies.
    • Reply
  • WED18
    July 1993
    WED18 ·
    • Flag

    Team plated here. I think they're more elegant and people get served at relatively the same time. With the buffets I've been to the last tables are just getting their meals after the first few tables are done eating. I also don't like walking with a plate of food in my best attire (I'm clumsy!).

    • Reply
  • stephanie
    Super October 2017
    stephanie ·
    • Flag
    Plated is more elegant, but I prefer buffet for all the reasons mentioned here.

    Another thing to keep in mind is it sounds like you have options for each of the courses, which sounds very complicated for plated. Typically with a plated meal guests only choose the entree, and the sides/salad/etc. are standard. If you want to give guests all of the choices you mention, plated might be a nightmare for the staff, and your seating cards will have to waste half the space identifying the many choices your guest made for the courses.
    • Reply
  • EngineerInLove
    VIP September 2018
    EngineerInLove ·
    • Flag
    Not a dumb question at all. I prefer plated since it feels more wedding to me, and because I'm a klutz that drops things all the time so I worry at buffets. This is one of those things that's really up to the couple.
    with Italian food though, I think a buffet would be great because you can try a little of everything rather than lasagna OR ravioli.
    • Reply
  • Future Mrs M
    Super June 2018
    Future Mrs M ·
    • Flag

    I prefer plated meals. I do not like the waiting in line for a buffet and going table by table. However, with a buffet, you can get more if you want.

    • Reply

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