Catering for a Plated Dinner or Buffet

Catering for a Plated Dinner or Buffet

Catering for a Plated Dinner or Buffet

Planning for a special function is very important.  There are so many decisions that need to be made, and sometimes it does come down to space, money or time.  If you are looking to have a special dinner and are not sure the difference between a plated dinner and buffet, here are a few tips to save you time on enquiries, money on the overall bill and confusing yourself with multiple enquiries to different catering companies.

At weddings and special functions, there is generally an order of service.  If one part of your function is running late, like photos taking longer than expected, this may have a flow on effect to speeches and dinner having to be delayed.  This is to be expected for catering companies, however they do try and minimise this as much as possible.


A buffet dinner is perfect for many occasions; however some brides do have the expectation of a plated dinner.  A plated dinner will be served directly to the table by wait staff, without having to move from your table.  This can run in order of Entree, Main, and Dessert and to finish Mini Chocolates and Tea/Coffee service.  Plated dinners can allow a great evening for guests, as they don’t have to move from their seat unless required.  This may include an alternate drop with two selections for each course during the night.   When planning a function, do allow for additional costs and extra wait staff to serve the meals.  Generally plated dinners are served at venues with an in-house catering team, that have plates, staff and everything they will require for a smooth service.  Mobile catering companies may be able to provide plated dinners, however everything required for the job will need to be brought with them.  This may increase costs more due to staff travel and any special requirements you may have with service.

A Buffet is different from a plated meal.  All the food is beautifully presented with guests being able to select the quantity and choice of the food presented.  Not all buffets are the same, as the presentation can play an important first impression.  Guests will be required to move from their seats; however a buffet will allow guests plenty of choice.  If you have special dietary requirements, a buffet is perfect as it will not restrict you from eating a dish due to certain ingredients.  Buffet Catering are generally much more cost effective as the number of staff required to serve and clear is minimised.

Consider the advantages and costs between a plated dinner and buffet service.  Many guests will not mind either way, however some functions are more suited to one or the other.

Australian Caterers has FREE Business listing across Australia for all Wedding and Function related companies, so check out the our website if you are planning a function or event.

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