Unlike other menus, the reception catering menu can be suitable for any kind of event. It’s perfect for corporate events, gala dinners, openings, presentations, seminars, networking events, and customer appreciation parties. It’s a great pick for outdoor wedding receptions, posh or cozy weddings, anniversaries, and other social gatherings.
Reception catering menu is best for events in which the food is complementary to the agenda (e.g. hors d’oeuvres during a networking event) or the venue lacks space for guest tables, or serves as a cocktail hour preceding a formal dinner.
The reception catering menu is served on platters or chef stations. Platters can be either carried by the waiters or placed on a stationary buffet. Use the chef stations and buffets to draw the guests around the space and create flow through the event.
Reception Catering Menu Setup
Depending on the items you select from the reception catering menu, the buffets will be set with plates and flatware, available to the guests where necessary. Where items like sliders, canapes, and skewers are butlered by waiters, cheese boards, charcuteries, crudites and sushi might be offered on a stationary buffet with plates and flatware or chopsticks.
Used in reception-style service, cocktail menus aim to feed your guests in small portions, typically no more than two bites each. Because your guests will be standing as they mingle for the majority of the event, each item must be created to be consumed comfortably without the aid of utensils or structured seating.
You aren’t serving a formal meal, so you’ll need to consider the timing of the event and order enough pieces per person from the reception catering menu, so that your guests will walk away feeling well-fed. For example, if your event falls between or after usual meal-times, we recommend the reception catering menu consisting of less than 10 pieces per person, but if you’re inviting them right after work, you’ll need to increase this to more than 12 pieces per person, plus add a few platters (like crudites or cheese boards) since they will be hungry, having not eaten dinner.
The items you choose for reception catering menu should cover an array of proteins, vegetables and carbs. Choose satiating stick-to-your-ribs items, paired with a few lighter palate-cleansing selections. The food itself and the serving should be designed in a minimalistic manner, butlered by the waiters or placed in a designated space where guests can easily pick the items they love. An interesting addition to any reception is a chef-attended station, where the food is prepared live. Doubling as an activity where guests get to interact with the chef, top their own plates with special condiments or select from a small menu of similar items, action stations add value to the reception.
Alternatives to the Reception Catering Menu
There are several alternatives to the Reception Catering Menu, based on the event type, the allocated budget, the event facilities, table setup and number of guests. Please find several alternative menus below. Keep in mind that our catering experts are ready to assist you along the process of designing the menu for your event. Feel free to contact us at any point and we will be happy to help you!
Please check our Plated Dinner Catering Menu for a plated dinner setup. It may be a better option for events where guests are seated at the tables and when the number of guests is well known in advance. It can either minimize the food serving time or integrate the food serving into the event’s agenda (e.g. Fundraising Dinner).
You can also check the Buffet Catering Menu for a quick and easy service for any size of event. It may be a better option for large events, especially when the number of guests is unknown (e.g. Open Events, Fairs).
Additionally, we are proud to offer one of the top quality BBQ catering services in Calgary through our Rare Cut division. Check the amazing BBQ Catering Menu selection and prepare for a most-entertaining and unique culinary show!