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How to Present Appetizers for 150
I am serving appetizers for and event tis thursday for 150 people. The event is from 8pm-9pm. here is the menu:
Mini Quiche
Spinach Dip
Maple Glazed Meatballs
Spring Rolls
Spring Medley Salad

These will be displayed not passed appetizers. I need to know what equipment should I use to present each dish? How far in advance should I heat the food so it will be warm for the guests? Should I use chaffing dishes for some of the items? Its an evening event so I want to make sure the presentation is nice. Any creative ideas for how to present the food would be great as well. Thanks in advance,

To serve this many people in this short of a time, you need at least two full service areas/tables (could be 2 sides of a longer center room buffet or two separate) and three might be better, especially depending on the layout of the room. These are separate from the beverage service or any desserts.You need at least 1 server/runnner for each table plus the kitchen folk and bar folk, since you will have to be running the quiches and spring rolls out from the kitchen.

I am puzzled by the salad? An unusual choice, messy compared to the rest, requires a fork, and fairly hard to eat standing up. A vegetable appetizer like stuffed mushrooms or cherry tomatoes, or cucumber rounds with assorted (multicolored) hummus toppings would be more in keeping with the rest of the menu.

Usually, with this many people, there would be two or three more choices, unless they are being served before dinner. Fruit trays, cheese or cheese spreads, mini sweets/pastries are obvious choices.

You don't say what your layout is or decoration budget is?

The meatballs could use a chafer. Trays would do for the rest. There are many pictures of buffet setups on line with advice for things like varying heights with different platforms under the cloth.

The layout is actually a lobby area of a theater arts center. She has 5 ft rounds as well as 6 x 30 rectangular tables, and a cocktail 30 inch table. I forgot to mention that we will have a fruit and cheese tray display. I was going to place the fruit and cheese tray on the cocktail table, and the remaining items on the round table. The salad was included because its one of my most requested dishes so I included it. I will keep your suggested items in mind for future reference. The entire budget is $700.
With this many people at a theater intermission type situation, I would probably do 3 well-spaced round tables exactly the same on all tables. Would require 3 chafers and be a little harder to keep stocked, but much nicer for the diners.

With the round tables you can set something in the middle of the table (milk crate?) before spreading the cloth and get a nice variation in the heights.

Maybe you could roll the spring salad in thin wraps to make a finger snack out of it? They come in great color/flavors...

Thats a good idea! Thanks so much ellen and I will report backto let you know how it went.
The event went well. Next time I will skip on the springrolls only because I had to keep reheating them and they became dry. (the client kept switching the serving time.)
I have another event this Thursday and could use some advice. Im doing a Tasting for a potential client (govt). Its a luncheon for 5-8 people. I was going to do make chicken salad and serve in red cabbage bowls, an assortment of sandwiches consisting of turkey/swiss wraps, ham/ cheese wrap. The sandwiches were going to be cream cheese and egg salad. Could use some more suggestions. Trying to present creative things but Im also on a budget since this is a free tasting to gain clientele.
Hi, Shannon,

I would probably do just one wrap- ham and cheese and turkey and cheese would be very simlilar.

How about a cream cheese wrap or sandwich with chutney and curry seasonings and raisins for the other? And plenty of mustard and maybe some capers or olives in the egg salad? You also could do a sample/demo box lunch, which you don't serve, showing a cookie, chips, fruit salad cup or kabob and sandwich, with a price.

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