Buffet style food service has been a staple for wedding receptions for a long time. It's a very economical and efficient way to feed a lot of guests with different dietary preferences at once.
<-- Perhaps buffets have a bad name as you think of this kind of thing happening when someone shouts "food is served!" but I promise you it doesn't have to be like this!
Depending on what stage you’re at in your wedding planning, you may not have given much thought to your wedding breakfast just yet. This is an especially easy part of your wedding day to ignore if you ‘re getting married at a venue with in-house caterers or a preferred catering company, as that takes a lot of the responsibility out of your hands. The wedding breakfast is, however, an important thing to start considering sooner rather than later, especially as food and beverages are going to comprise the biggest share of your final bill (usually around 40%!!). Choosing what dishes to include in your menu is one thing, but it’s also often forgotten that you have to decide how you want your food to be served; a small detail that can make a big difference to the flow of your day.
So, here are my thoughts on why you shouldn't rule out a buffet style meal;
Perfect for a relaxed, informal wedding
Buffets tend to be a cheaper option as they require fewer waiting staff to serve, so if budget is a concern, then a buffet should be something to consider. But, that doesn't mean it has to feel generic. Why not have something different? A hog roast, or a barbecue?
You can choose a lot of different food options
Following on from what I said in my last point, you can be different. You can have multiple dishes for each course, you can share different foods from your favourite travels with your friends and family, you can make sure dietary requirements can easily be met and it allows people to eat what they like!
You can have themed 'stations'
Building on the advantage of having different dishes, you could even have themed stations covering different cuisines. Maybe your favourite dish from each adventure you've been on? Do a "my choice" and "their choice"? You can have a dessert station too, and I mean, who doesn't want that?
It gets people talking
The people who aren't sat next to each end up chatting when stood in a queue to collect their food, and it gets the people at the table chatting when someone asks "what did you go for?". I personally think a buffet is a great ice breaker!
It will probably be different to the other weddings everyone has been to
Because buffets are slightly frowned up, your friends and family probably haven't been to a wedding with a buffet in a long while, so it will make it different!
Not quite a buffet, but have you considered family style?
It's not really a buffet as people don't have to get up and serve themselves, but what about family style food? It reduces the need for lots of staff (therefore reducing costs!), as large platters are served at the table for the guests to then share those, it gets people talking and you can still have different food options as everything is sharable.
So, have I convinced you yet?
Here is a little buffet style reception FAQ:
How can I minimise waste?
There are several ways! Why not supply takeaway boxes so your guests can leave with leftovers? Or, you could consider food donations, so leftover food can be given to homeless families?
What foods work well for buffets? What food don't?
Dishes that have a lot of moisture are good for buffets, like curries, meatballs, ramen? Things that aren't in sauces can very easily dry out if they are kept out for a long time. Maybe if you want something along them lines you could go for family style dining?
How should guests get their plates and utensils?
Well, if the table is all set beautifully (by your on the day coordinator or wedding planner 😏) your guests don't have to collect their plates or utensils from anywhere other than their table!
So, have I convinced you now? Get in touch so we can get planning!
Here is some more inspiration for your travel inspired wedding --> Moroccan Romance at Mount Pleasant Ecological Park