When planning a celebration one of your first decisions is most likely going to be in regards to your menu. Many times people put a lot of thought into what they want to serve, but not necessarily how they want it served. The service style decision is equally as important as what is on the plate because it sets the tone for your event and can be a fun, whimsical reflection of your personality or a formal, elegant representation of you.
There are many styles of service, the more popular ones being seated, buffet, stations or family style. Whenever guests are invited to stand up and move about the room, as they would for a buffet or food stations, it provides for a more social atmosphere, encouraging people to mingle and meet more guests. Small intimate tables are more casual than the larger, traditional round tables, and long, communal tables reflect a more “home-like” dining experience.
Having a hard time deciding which style will best fit your event? Don’t be afraid to mix and match – in fact, sometimes using two different styles will actually improve the flow of your event. Having a seated first course will eliminate long lines at a buffet by naturally staggering the time that guests visit the main buffet and it will allow for any formal introductions or announcements to be made while everyone is seated and you’ll have their full attention but then lightens the mood when people do get up to browse the buffets.
If your budget is a concern, please keep in mind that, though you’ll save money with staff using a buffet set-up you may actually spend more money on equipment rentals for the additional service ware and décor that will be needed for the buffet. Make sure to ask your Jewell event consultant if you’re not sure which style best fits your event needs and budget.