The Art of the Buffet: How to Create the Perfect Buffet
Creating the perfect buffet, it’s an art form! We all know a ‘Buffet Champion’! That person who can truly ‘put on a spread’, the one to end all spreads! Food as far as the eye can see, cubed items on cocktail sticks and plates crammed full of homecooked fare - we asked our Buffet Champion, Joanie gal Rosie East, for her top tips on how to create the perfect buffet.
The buffet. Something often taken for granted, an indispensable part of any event (or non-event), seems to have fallen under sudden threat of extinction. I hope this important part of our social culture can survive these changing and challenging times.
Imagine with me for a few moments, that social gatherings are no longer prohibited and allow me to share a few tips on planning the perfect spread.
Creating the Perfect Buffet - Know your Crowd
Whether it’s style over substance or vice versa, it’s important to cater for the clientele. Take into account the mood of the occasion; happy/sad, fun/serious, sophisticated/casual, think about who will be attending and know how to wow. Imagine what your guests will be expecting: great food? On-trend ingredients? A flamboyant display? Exceed this, then put knobs on. Even the dullest party can be elevated by a great meal, don’t hold back, go all out.
This leads me to...
The Buffet Centerpiece
“The party was spoiled by the swan ice sculpture”, said no one. Ever.
Party food ideas - Think exotic fruits, elaborate pastries, everything on sticks. Whatever it is make sure its unmissable.
The Buffet Display
Remember, we eat with our eyes, presentation is everything. Extra points for novelty shaped canapes and fancy garnishes. Don’t overlook your serve-ware. There's no better occasion than a buffet to get out your 'best' crockery. This is where all of your car boot finds come into their own. That pickled onion jar in the shape of an onion! Get it out and let it do the job it was born to do.
Any good buffetier knows these three golden rules;
1. Repeat - Sometimes you can't mess with the classics. Bread, veg, meat. Repeat. And again (oh, and don’t forget the condiments).
2. Replenish – Have a good back stock. One lonely vol-au-vent is never that tempting and there's no greater disappointment than finding out that all the king prawn skewers were long gone before you even graced the table.
3. Retract – Know when it’s time to stop, you want your cold table to remembered in all its glory. Pack up the leftovers while they're still fit for tomorrow's breakfast. Pop out a few sweet treats and nibbles and enjoy the rest of the party.
It takes effort to put on a great buffet but it’s even harder still to get one wrong. Good or bad, we love them. They provide a talking point, a (hopefully) tasty spread and they force us to mingle which, let’s be honest, is a lot harder without food. Long live the buffet, and in the meantime it's a cheese hedgehog for one.
Get ready for a queue of greedy eyes, plate in hand, cutlery and napkin strategically balanced ready to pounce! Our Phoebe Buffet (LOL) tee is a celebration of the 1970s beige buffet. A vintage fit T-shirt with short sleeves and ribbed neckline, in a pale pink jersey with retro buffet graphic featuring cheese on sticks, stuffed olives and bottles of fizz. Ding ding! The buffet is open*.
*This item was designed prior to buffets being vetoed by COVID-19, but as we’re still making micro buffets in our own homes, we decided to release this anyway!