You are planning an event that will always be special to you and have come to the realisation that you cannot afford a lavish sit down dinner for your engagement or wedding. In most cases, food and beverages are the greatest expenses of an event such as a wedding or engagement and can lead to stressful times when planning. When considering an alternative to a sit down meal you can always offer a buffet, finger foods, cocktail and fork menus to suit your budget. Your guests will be more than happy if you can offer them a meal to celebrate this joyous occasion in an atmosphere that is representative of the Bride and Groom.
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A SALAD LUNCHEON/RECEPTION
A salad luncheon reception is wonderful if your engagement or wedding is late morning. In addition, this type of meal is cheaper than a sit-down meal or buffet. Offer a wide selection of salads such various pasta salads, potato, rice salads, Chinese salads, coleslaw, fruit salads, gelatins with fruit, and green salads. Provide a few salad dressings, fruits, and breads.. If you have a little extra in the budget a Platter of King Prawns, allowing 3 per person, can really jazz this buffet up.
FINGER FOODS OR FORK MENU RECEPTION
This type of reception/event is appropriate between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. or after an evening wedding. Provide light finger foods such as chips and dips, fruit and vegetable platters, cheeses, and crackers. If you would like to include more substantial foods that are more filling include meat and cheese trays, or a fork menu.
SPIT ROAST MENU
This type of reception or party is held at main meal times and is similar to a buffet with an added smell and theatrics of a spit roast cooking prior to eating. Menus vary from standard to deluxe with most offering choices to suit individual needs on the number of courses.
This menu can be similar to the above with the exception of the cooking of meats. You can also offer your guests a larger variety of meats and seafood cooked this way. Remember to cater for those who may not wish to have a large or no serving of red meats including chicken and fish and salads.
DECADENT DESSERT RECEPTION
This type of reception is suitable between 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. or after an evening wedding. Serve an extensive assortment of rich desserts such as cheese cakes, tarts, tortes, cookies, pies, cakes, pastries, and candies. Serve coffee, tea, and other beverages.
Other Cost Considerations Location/Rental Equipment
Does the site include tables or chairs or do you have to rent them? Do not forget that you many need to rent tents, linens, and kitchen facilities. You many cut costs by using paper and plastic goods instead of glassware, china plates, cloth napkins, and silverware.
Waitstaff/Duration of the Event
How long is the event? If the event runs over you may have to pay overtime charges. How long do you have the reception site/facilities for? Does the time of the rental of the site and the waitstaff include the time of the set-up and clean up? Ask you caterer to start cleaning up while your guests are still there. If you cannot afford waitstaff consider ordering drop-off food or self-serve buffet food.