The Top 3 Guest Food Complaints and How To Avoid Them


The Top 3 Guest Food Complaints and How To Avoid Them

Brian Kiefer, senior sales consultant for Food For Thought, deals with party guests and hosts on a daily basis, receiving insider information that us commoners would kill to know. What do brides tell him they hated at their best friend's wedding? What does he overhear guests grumbling about? What does he urge all of his clients to avoid? His knowledge of the business absolutely floored me, and what he had to say demonstrated that he knows the ins and outs of the wedding catering industry like the back of his own hand, better even.

Learn how to have the best wedding ever by avoiding the gripes and guaranteeing the grins. Not only will you learn what to avoid, but you'll also hear the best wedding ideas.

I asked Kiefer the three biggest guest complaints he hears repeatedly regarding catering. Here is what he had to say:

Complaint #1: Not enough hors d'oeuvres
Solution: Kiefer suggests that hosts should order at least 5 pieces of hors d'oeuvres for every head. If you know that your family loves appetizers, play it on the safe side and order 8 per head. Guests are more likely than not to come to a wedding hungry, so you want to ensure each guest feels amply fed when entering the reception hall. Otherwise, they're going to starve their way through the speeches, begging for some kind of nourishment.


Complaint #2: Lines at the bar(s)
Solution: For every 50 guests you should have one bartender. Kiefer explained that many couples are wrongly informed that there should be one bartender for every 75 guests and insists that this will lead to unhappy and empty-handed guests. Brilliantly, Kiefer suggested that if all guests are arriving to the reception location at the same time, drinks should be passed in the same way that appetizers are. This will ensure that every guest has a drink in his hand within 10 minutes. Keep in mind that the same server-to-guest ratio should be maintained when drinks are being passed.


Complaint #3: Crummy food
Solution: More staff. Chances are the reason for the crummy food is that there isn't enough staff. Whether that means there isn't enough manpower to cook the food on site or there aren't enough hands to get the food out quickly enough, Kiefer maintains that this will lead to unsatisfactory meals. Kiefer's company, Food For Thought, cooks everything on site, and as soon as the food is cooked, it's carried to the table. This requires enough staff to be able to grab a dish as soon as it's completed. Kiefer also explains that if the kitchen is on a different floor than the dining room, more staff is needed to be able to get the food out efficiently. If it takes the servers longer to bring the food to the table, more meals will be sitting on the line for an extended period of time. This will lead to cold, "crummy" food. Kiefer declares, and rightfully so, that when it comes to wedding catering, you get what you pay for.


Time and time again, Kiefer explained that everything comes down to budget. He also explained, though, that there are places to put your money and places you can save. It is more important to have sufficient staff than it is to have the top-of-the-line steak. Food For Thought can create an absolutely divine meal out of beef medallion; they simply use their knowledge to marinate it the right way to make it melt in your mouth. They will work with you to cut down costs in creative ways so that you can put your money towards avoiding the big three complaints.




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