What do I need to consider when selecting the Gala menu?

There is a lot to consider when selecting your food for a special event. The first thing to note is that if you hold your event at a hotel, oftentimes, the hotel catering service will provide the food. This will save you a ton of time and stress. The flipside, is that you can't be quite as creative with the menu as you might want to be.

I am going to outline a few important items to keep in mind when booking your caterer. 

  1. Do you want hors d'oeuvres? If you are having a VIP reception, I would highly suggest 2-3 passed appetizers. For the main event, a nice cheese and cracker station in the entry area is fine.
  2. For a lower price, consider a buffet. For 300 guests, you will need two, double sided buffet lines. You can fancy up your buffet by adding a carving station. 
  3. You can certainly opt for a plated meal. The main concern here is that you will serve every guest the same option. If you ask for a meal selection, please note that you will end up with guests that cannot attend at the last minute. At the same time, you need to fill their seat so the room stays full. Do you just offer that new guest, the original guest's meal since it is too late to take a special request? 
  4. Ice tea and water is fine. Do not feel like you need to offer a full array of drink options. If you have the option for a cash bar, that is even better. 
  5. For an event with 150+ guests, I would suggest presetting the dessert at each seat. Alternating between a chocolate and a pie dessert will ensure every couple is able to try each one. 

These are a few quick tips to help you preplan and work out those potential kinks ahead of time. Now let's get to work on planning that event menu. Good luck!

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