Menus vs. Buffets Menus are more popular in a continental restaurant than buffets because a has variety of choices. Discuss. In today’ s economy, where people are continuously striving to work more and more and make the world a better place to live, it has become difficult for them to spend time cooking and preparing meals at home. For this fact, the food industry has been the most successful industry around the world. People nowadays cannot live without restaurant food as many individuals depend on restaurants for their regular meals.
Restaurant and Hotel industry has become an integral part of people’ s life. Regardless of the age, gender and occupation of people, restaurants have become equally important for the whole population. This industry is equally popular among youngsters, working population and older people. Each individual has a different taste in food. Thus, some people like to mix many kinds of dishes in their course which they will choose to eat in a buffet, and others chose to eat one course and order from menus. When we come to different religious beliefs, each person differs in what they eat therefore some choose to order food from menus, as for others chose buffets.
As it all in the end depends on the person itself. This paper aims to analyze the popularity of menus among customers and prove its success factors in detail providing evidence from literature. The paper draws its conclusion by logically incorporating information in different paragraphs. Personal views are also included in the concluding paragraph to further illuminate the concepts used. Customers prefer menus over buffets in an international restaurant because they have set price.
For that, each individual tends to order according to their budget. For example, a customer enters a restaurant with only £ 10. He or she will order a dish with the budget they have. He or she would not prefer going and eating in a buffet, as no buffet costs 10 pounds. The argument here is some customers prefer buffets over menus as they can eat starters, main course and dessert with one price. Unlike menus, one dish might cost a customer the same amount in a buffet.
The problem when comparing buffets and menus is people will always look at the price and quality of the food. No matter how high or low the price, is what matters for most customers is the quality of food. As stated that “ Some people will not be able to afford to eat out, others will only be able to eat out occasionally, but for others eating out will be a frequent event. ” (Fosket & Ceserani, 2003:46) In the light of this argument there are a few claims that may be proved.
Firstly, the busy schedule of modern era’ s people does not provide them with the time to prepare meals and take in the healthiest and most nutritious food at home. Most of the population, including students, working population and even those who are retired opt for restaurants rather than home cooked meals which require more time and money to be ready to eat. The choice of buffets and menus, however, depends on the financial stability of the individual. A student may not afford to have buffets every day, however, a businessmen may be able to afford it easily.
Most of the people opt for menus rather than buffets because they are either too choosy about their meals or they have limited resources available to spend on their regular meals. However, people also prefer menus over buffets because they are customized. Some people like to add or remove some toppings and add sides to their dish. For example, adding or removing cheese, or adding corn on the side. This cannot happen in a buffet as buffets are set according to the chef’ s recipe and people eat what is available in the buffet.
This might be a problem with people who are allergic to some kinds of food. Fresh food is what all people actually want to eat. When we come to buffets, most items of buffets are prepared earlier and some are prepared before a day or two as chefs will not be able to prepare 3 or 4 dishes of each cuisine in a buffet in one day. For that, we can see that most buffets are not fresh.
Unlike menus, each dish is prepared the minute a customer orders it as it comes freshly made. As for buffets, chefs warm them up earlier for the buffet to look fresh. Taste and quality conscious people, hence, go for menus. The taste of a freshly cooked food is far better and delicious than the one prepared earlier. In addition, there are more chances of health risking outcomes from the meals which are either stale or are preserved for too long. Many people look out for their health.
For that most buffets are not suitable for those who are on a diet. Unlike menus, Many menus offer the calories or at least a section for those who are looking out for their health or who have cholesterol problems. “ Customer needs relate directly to the dietary needs, preferences, and tastes of the individual. An example of identifying customer needs is seen in the response of the restaurant industry, as a whole, to increased awareness of health and nutrition on the part of the general public, combined with an ongoing concern with cholesterol, sodium, and caloric counts. ” (Scanclon, 1999:83).
In the light of this statement, it can easily be claimed that menus offer more chances to maintain dietary habits and keep the calories under control. It always depends on the customer how he takes the calorie information available. A lot of people consider planning weddings or big events in a restaurant. Therefore, some chose buffets over menus in that case, in order for the people to have different verities, as it will cost less to spend on big events. As for people who are planning on a certain budget for big events, a set menu with limited choices and set prices could be established.
Therefore we could see the difference between the buffet and menu. As menus in big events even though they are set to a budget, a person might order more than once for drinks and food. Unlike buffets, everything is going to be set and the person who is hosting the event will have a certain budget to pay before the event. Everyone comes from a different cultural background.
Therefore, each person has his own taste and beliefs in what to eat. For example, most Muslims eat halal food, for that when going to a non Halal restaurant, the Muslim will not be able to order any kind of meat or a dish that contains wine which is not prohibited within a Muslim custom. As for when we come to vegetarians, most of them will not eat in a buffet as we can see out of 6 to 7 dishes in a buffet one dish might be vegetarian excluding the salads.
However, when ordering from a menu, the menu shows variety of choices for all people with different cultural backgrounds as it serves the Muslim, vegetarian, and individuals with different religions therefore it serves everyone. The statements of Fosket & Ceserani clearly prove the claim that people’ s religions affect their food choices dramatically. The religious values of certain people prohibit them from taking certain types of food. Some people avoid alcohol whiles others are restricted to take meat; some are prohibited to take cows’ meat while others are not allowed to take any kind of food with pig and other animal’ s ingredients in it.
Religion affects dressing, point of views, thoughts and even the food choices of people (Fosket & Ceserani, 2003:54). Comparing two restaurants with similar food as one serves food with menus and the other with buffets actually differs for customers. When one enters a restaurant that serves food on a menu he or she will get served with food, drinks, and all he needs. As the table will already be set with the plates and spoons and the drinks will be ordered with the food, whereas, in buffets the individuals would be required to move towards the plates and serve themselves with what they need.
They would not be given any menu to decide on. In fact, they would have to move across the tables and choose their menu by themselves. This environment and process is interesting for some people but for others, it is hateful and dishonourable. Some people like to be treated more honourably and it difficult to arrange food on the tables for themselves.
Moreover, people often find it problematic to get more food and drinks while eating. Hence, people who like to be served better opt for menus rather than buffets. In conclusion, we can say that certain factors affect the choice of buffets or menus. The most important factors involve the financial conditions, food consciousness, religion and attitudes of people towards restaurant’ s atmosphere and hospitality standards. The choice between menus and buffets is more dependent on the individual’ s cultural, moral and financial standards rather than an overall analysis of these two choices.
What is more appropriate for one individual may be unacceptable for the other. Hence, the choice between these two is not of a general comparison but of individualistic approach of people. My personal opinion is that menus are suitable for everyone as they serve everyone’ s taste in food. I believe that it suits all whether someone is on a certain budget or a person who is willing to spend a certain amount. Menus also serve people with different religions as whether people who are vegetarians and the ones who are associated with different religions (Hunter, Tinton & Carey, 2007:42).
Therefore, menus are more popular in international restaurants than buffets. However, the concerns about health and tastes prevail and require careful consideration before choosing any restaurant. Choosing menus does not ensure the quality and taste, careful analysis of food and nutritional information is always required. References: DAVIS, B., LOCKWOOD, A., & STONE, S. (1998). Food and beverage management. Oxford, England, Butterworth-Heinemann. FOSKETT, D., CESERANI, V., & KINTON, R. (2003). The theory of catering. Abingdon, Hodder & Stoughton. RADICE, J., & MAGIERA, M.
(1990). Marketing the Restaurant Through Graphics. Menu Design / Judi Radice, 4. New York, PBC. SCANLON, N. L. (1999). Marketing by menu. New York [etc. ], John Wiley & Sons. HUNTER, G., TINTON, T, & CAREY, P, (2007). Professional chef. Level 2 S/NVQ. London, Cengage Learning.
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