When you get the head count from the customer, you are agreeing to feed that many people, so if you have left overs they are yours. I make extra on purpose, so I don't run out. Nothing worse then running out, cause it always the caters fault no matter what. If I have extra of sides that I don't want, I give that to the customer and any tins of meat that has been opened and placed on the table I give to them also. I normally bring some clamshells for people to take that stuff home. There is nothing wrong with keeping the extra tins of meat you make have holding. You made extra on purpose, in case your estimate was low or the customer had more then expected show up. This can make you look like a hero, when you tell them they have had the agreed 100 go through the line and there are still people in line, but because you're a professional you still have food to feed them. I good way to keep track of people is to only set out that many plates as agreed head count. I helps keep a pretty close total. Then you can get more plates out and charge for the rest that will be eating. One way to keep a customer from low balling the number in attendance is to agree to a set amount for the agreed amount of people and then a higher price for any above that.
On the other hand, if they buy the meat and sides by the lb or what ever unit you want to use. Then any extras are theirs to keep. If they sqwalk about how much is left over, its usually because of poor estimating. You will probably help them decide how much they need for their 100 guests. Once again set out 100 plates. Now if you have meat left over, count the plates left and explain its because they only had 60 guests show up. If they are nice about it, I will offer to by the meat back, at half price.
Sorry for the long reply, you will find a system that works for you.
Originally Posted by pat
Ok so do you reduce the quantity per person at all due to it being a grad party, or would you just estimate based on your normal quantities, i.e. 4oz/person etc?
I always hear people complain about having too much left over due to people not eating, that's why I asked the question.