Venting: Petite Food

(Carrot image via Malias)

This post really should have been called, “Venting: When we pay for a meal, and get an appetizer.” Last week I went to dinner at this new, amazing, hip restaurant in New york.

I was so excited to go there that when the only reservation available was at 5:45pm, I took it (even though it felt like the early bird special).

The decor was glamorous in an old world kind of way and there was great service with the right pinch of attitude…but my main course was $35 and I only received two small shrimps on a big, over-sized plate. That was it.

I’ve noticed the same thing with prix fixe menu options for event catering. A lot of caterers or venues have these great prix fixe prices, however I have heard more than once that guests end up leaving the event completely hungry.

I remember being at an event once and asking for seconds at dinner. (Okay folks, I do have a big appetite.) The server rushed back to the kitchen then came back 10 minutes later (completely ashamed) saying, “That’s it sir, you only get one serving.”

Gauging the right amount of food for any event is always tricky. Many clients will also do the complete opposite and have an over abundance of food–which is perfectly okay if that’s what they want.

Here are some of my recommendations when it comes to food:

  • If you choose to have a lot of food during the cocktail hour, you might want to consider having a lighter dinner. If guests fill up during cocktails, they will hardly touch their dinners. What a huge waste. I see a lot of uneaten steaks and lobster at the end of an evening. Or, you could consider having mostly appetizers in beautiful trays for the cocktail part of the evening, and serve a generous sit-down meal for the reception.
  • You might not think so, but even the most glamorous guests would be open to taking home uneaten food. Offer your guests food to take home in a beautiful container.
  • If you have an abundance of food left over, make sure it’s donated to an organization like Feeding America or, if you’re in New York City, City Harvest.

You’ve probably heard the expression, “You get what you pay for.” That’s all I am asking for when eating out–feed me properly PLEASE. What do you think?

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