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Pros and Cons of Plated vs. Family Style with Scot of Sage Catering

How do you begin the food coversation with couples? At Sage, we like to start with a client's ideas and preferences and build from there. Whether that be plated dinners, family style, small plates or stations - we find it best to start with their vision. More than anything we look for our clients to be part of the process.  We strive to incorporate their ideas with our style and experience.  We find that it is through this collaborative effort we build the best menus and create the most memorable events.

What do you find to be the most popular catering style? Family style eating has become a favorite among brides. It offers a great social component, the opportunity for variety and the feeling of abundance - thus making family style an increasingly popular direction for events in wine country. One of our favorite ideas is a combination of both a plated service with the addition of "must-have" accompaniments offered family style.  In this dual format we feel like guests have the best of both - a thoughtful, focused menu with fun, perhaps unexpected extras!

What are the pros and cons of family style, buffet, plated, etc?  Each format and style has its own benefits and reasons why it fits a particular bride or groom's style and why it may work best for a given event.  For us, presenting a seated or small plate menu allows us the ability to be the most focused with presentation and menu ideas.

Finally, when you go out to eat in Wine Country, what are your top 3 spots to grab a bite to eat or a glass of wine to enjoy the tastes of Sonoma and Napa? Bistro Don Giovanni, Bottega and although it's not in Wine Country, Picco in Larkspur. It's ingredient driven with simple preparations and the right mix of farm to table.

{All photos courtisy of Sage Catering, a member of The Collection Event Studio. Say hello here.}

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