Wedding Cakes & Food Forum

Is this reasonable?

I received a possible menu from our prospective (and whom is most likely to be, the actual) caterer.

1 pasta (either penne or ravioli)
2 sauces (alfredo and marinara)
Meatballs (on the side to accommodate vegans and vegetarians) 
2 salads
Rolls

This would be for 80 people, costing $1,200, in southern California. Is this a good value? Is there enough variety for guests?

Re: Is this reasonable?

  • At $15/head that seems like a great deal to me. I am not familiar with Southern California prices but that seems reasonable by any standard. Since you are only offering one pasta I would do penne instead of ravioli. As much as I love ravioli, it alienates those with lactose intolerance, who don't like cheese, etc. I think if would be nice to have some veggie toss ins or grilled chicken to go with the Alfredo. As a guest I definitely would not go hungry with this menu.
  • emmyg65emmyg65 member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers First Anniversary
    Definitely do penne. Ravioli + alfredo is a little much. This sounds delicious, and very reasonably priced. One thought: Do you have any gluten-free people?
  • JennyColadaJennyColada Awesometown, CA member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary First Answer
    edited May 2014
    Pasta isn't vegan (unless you specifically buy vegan pasta). Just something to keep in mind (if you need to).

    I agree with side veggies (roasted squash and zucchini maybe?) and chicken.

    And do you mean two TYPES of salads, or just two salads period?
  • @sheslikeaburn Good point about lactose intolerance. We'll do penne and maybe have some bowls with different kinds of cheese to add on as they please!

    @emmyg65 We have at least one person with gluten intolerance, and that's something I hadn't thought about. Would rice pasta work?

    @Jennycolada Really? I have a vegan friend/co-worker that eats the same kind of pasta as me all the time (our work provides food). Maybe he doesn't know? And we'd have two types of salads - one caesar, the other would be spinach with dried nuts and cranberries.
  • JennyColadaJennyColada Awesometown, CA member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary First Answer
    edited May 2014
    @Jennycolada Really? I have a vegan friend/co-worker that eats the same kind of pasta as me all the time (our work provides food). Maybe he doesn't know? And we'd have two types of salads - one caesar, the other would be spinach with dried nuts and cranberries.
    While there IS vegan pasta, most pasta is made with eggs as a binder for the dough. Many vegans simply don't pay attention or care about minor things like that though. So it just depends on your crowd for whether or not you'd even need to take that into consideration.

    For the gluten-intols and the vegans, having some roasted veggies (which they can top with marinara sauce) may be a good option. You could even do a spaghetti squash if you want to stick with the pasta theme (but that might be a little pricey, as it's kind of a high-labor dish).

    ETA: I was discussing this with Fi the other day, and he believes that most mass-produced dried pasta is probably vegan (he thinks that they use other binders and chemicals to keep the pasta's shape and texture). Sounds reasonable.
  • emmyg65emmyg65 member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers First Anniversary
    I'm not very educated on gluten intolerance, so I can't comment on the rice pasta. Maybe talk to your caterer and your gluten-free guest?
  • My favorite gluten free pasta is quinoa pasta.
    I'm sure your caterer will have some suggestions and will be able to tell you what he can do.
  • @jennycolada the big dried pasta companies like barilla, ronzoni, etc do not use egg.
  • If the "2 salads" are more than just either a caesar and a greek/"regular" type of salad, I think it's a good menu. Are the salads pretty substantial? Any proteins, nuts, cheeses...I wouldn't necessarily say a pasta salad, since the main entree is pasta, but something a bit more than just lettuce, a couple veggies, and dressings...?
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • @casey8784 One salad is ceasar, the other is spinach with nuts and dried fruit.
  • I know I'd be a happy camper with your food choices :)
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    thesummersky
  • Mmmmm yes, I would love the food and I think that's a good price for it. That's around how much my food will be but my parents are taking care of that :)
  • I think this will satisfy most, though it would be nice to add a vegetable side of some sort unless the salads are pretty hearty.
  • Thanks for your suggestions! We ended up narrowing it down and going with:

    Chicken alfredo
    Penne in marinara sauce, with meatballs separate if people want to add them
    Spinach/dried fruit/nuts salad
    Steamed veggies
    Rolls
    theartistformerlyknownas
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