When you host a special event meal, your top priority most likely is to impress your guests with an experience they’ll remember. Hosting a corporate function can be a challenge, but careful planning can go a long way toward ensuring its success. Here are some dinner meal ideas to consider when you plan your special event meal.
Is Your Event Social or Professional?
Is your event social or more professional? If your guests are business professionals who regularly attend similar events, you want to offer them something unique that’s not the carbon-copy meal they’ve experienced so many times before. Provide them with a memorable event meal.
Know Your Guests’ Lifestyles
You’re more likely to please your guests if you consider such factors as their age group and lifestyle. Are they younger, middle aged or seniors? Sometimes older guests prefer traditional food, while those younger might enjoy trendier cuisine. Are they fitness or health conscious? If so, you might think about including natural selections when considering your dinner meal ideas. Some of your guests may be vegan or vegetarian, so you should also offer meatless choices on your menu.
Know Your Guests’ Ethnicity
Closely related to your guests’ lifestyle is their ethnicity. There’s little so embarrassing as failing to offer alternative menu choices to certain ethnic or religious groups who observe strict dietary restrictions. Also, if you’re focusing on a specific region, you might consider an ethnic-themed menu to further help your event stand out from the others.
Consider Your Guests’ Special Dietary Needs
As more people are becoming aware of common food allergies and intolerances, it’s also becoming standard practice to consider such needs when planning meals. When you send out invitations, for example, leave a space for guests to list their food allergies or intolerances on the RSVP form. Nothing can ruin an event more than needing to call 911 for a life-threatening anaphylactic attack.
Offer All Your Guests Menu Choices
Even among general audiences, you should offer several menu options from which your guests can choose. Give them a choice of two or even three entrees and at least three choices of salad dressings. It’s also best to serve salad dressings and condiments on the side. Your audience profile will probably dictate the choice of dessert. Generally, most will be pleased with a choice of either a healthier or a heavier dessert.
Estimate How Much Food to Order
Try to estimate as accurately as possible how much food and beverages you’ll need to order. You’ll pay for all the food you request, even if it’s more than the amount your guests will consume. It’s actually better to underestimate the amount, as any venue with a kitchen should be able to accommodate the additional unexpected servings. There will probably be leftovers, however, so why not donate them to a local homeless shelter or food pantry?
Consider the MIT Endicott House for Your Next Event
When planning your next event in the Boston area, consider the MIT Endicott House. Secluded on 25 acres fewer than 12 miles outside the city, our award-winning conference center is the ideal facility for holding corporate special events. The MIT Endicott House offers both practicality and sophistication, which is why we’re among the finest venues in the area for hosting your next conference, meeting or retreat meal.