To Graze or Buffet? Let Us Help You Decide!

Whether you are planning a party to celebrate your nuptials, a milestone birthday, wedding anniversary, baby shower, momentous achievement, or record breaking quarter at your company, a major decision must be made about what food will be served for your guests. Do you go with the traditional option of a buffet, where guests get in an organized line to be served several choices? Or do you go for an updated version by choosing a themed grazing station that guests can access at their leisure? Either way, our in-house catering team, Z Catering, is available to accommodate all of your culinary needs.

Buffet vs. Grazing Station: What You Need to Know
A buffet is a traditional staple for many different occasions. If your guests have been to any kind of party, they know the drill! Therefore, this type of setup is both familiar and comfortable for guests. It works because it creates a structured meal time. Why is this important? For starters, guests who love the experience of dining feel like they have had a solid meal while being able to chat with people at their table without interruption. It also means that the hosts can follow a timeline for planned activities, such as games, announcements, toasts, etc. So, are there any downfalls to choosing a buffet? Well, with this arrangement, guests often have to wait in a congested line, and it can take longer to feed guests if there isn’t careful planning around releasing tables. It can also limit the creativity of following a particular theme to match the style of your affair.

Grazing Station:
The use of grazing stations is a modern take on a buffet. Because of this, they have become THE
hottest trend for event planning. They allow hosts to get more creative by allowing them to
choose stations that match the theme of their gathering and these stations can add to the decor of
the occasion. This type of display caters to a casual atmosphere, which works well for “come & go” formats.
Since the stations can be placed around the room, this style encourages social interaction with all guests, instead of just those at your assigned table. Because there is not a controlled meal time, guests have the green light to eat whenever they wish. At this point, you may be wondering if there is a downside to this format. Unfortunately, this informal style can hinder planned activities that would require the full attention from all guests. Also, there is a potential for guests feeling like they were not served a “full meal,” if they are expecting a traditional full spread.
Best of Both Worlds with Z Catering
If a buffet checks all of the right boxes, the price for Z Catering’s lunch buffet is $13 per guest or
dinner buffet is $18-$21 per guest (depending on whether you want one or two entrees).
Here is the breakdown:
 Luncheon buffet includes 2 entrees & 2 sides
o Entrée selections: Baked Mac-n-Cheese, Chicken Piccata, Chicken Focaccia
Sandwich, Meatball Sliders, Chianti Braised Beef Rigatoni, Cheese Ravioli, Cold
Cut Tray, Braised Pork Sliders, or Prosciutto Panini

o Side selections: House salad, Traditional Caesar Salad, Pear & Arugula salad,
Lemon Chicken Orzo salad, Vegetable Medley, asparagus, or green beans
 Dinner buffet includes House or Caesar salad, Homemade bread,1 Pasta, and either
Italian vegetables or whipped potatoes
o Pasta selections: Penne or Rigatoni; Rigatoni Creamy Pesto; Penne Ala Vodka;
Penne Creamy Pesto
o Entrée selections: Chicken Marsala, Chicken Parmesan, Chicken Piccata, Chicken
Milanese, Pork Marsala, Pork Cutlet, Chianti Braised Beef, Meatballs & Sausage,
Roasted Chicken Cacciatore, or Eggplant Parmesan

On the other hand, if grazing stations meet your needs, Z Catering’s prices range from $5-$15
per guest, per station.Our choices include:
o Mac-n-Cheese Bar, which includes all 3 offerings from our menu (this encompasses our
most popular choice – Jake’s Mac-n-Cheese).
o Slider Station that can be built from choosing 3 types of meat (out of pulled pork, BBQ
pork, lamb, or meatball).
o Skewer Station made from 3 options (Balsamic Steak, Chilled Lemon Shrimp, Jerk
Chicken, Chimichurri Chicken, Grilled Veggies, or Assorted Fruit).
o Street Taco Bar, which gives you the choice of 2 meats (carne asada, braised pork,
chicken or shrimp) and comes with corn tortillas, chips, and salsa.
o Bruschetta Bar, featuring our favorite flavors of Fig Jam & Prosciutto, Apple & Brie, and
o Chicken Wing Bar - you get to pick your sauce, heat level, and dips (of course, celery &
carrot sticks accompany your wings)
o Dessert Bar options are a Fresh Fruit Bar, Gelato & Sorbet Bar, or our Mini Sweets
Extravaganza Bar.

For more information on specific pricing or menu items, check out Z Catering under the
“Vendors” section of The Cottage Wedding Venue website, directly on the web at, or by calling 480-747-0756.

Bernardina Zappone