What are the Different Types of Food Service?

When it comes to serving food and beverages to customers, there are a number of service styles to choose from. Understanding the different types of service, their benefits and individual challenges helps you decide which one is best for your restaurant. Table service is the most common type of food service, where waiters bring the food on plates and serve it on the left side. This is similar to the French trolley service, except that the waiters place the food on plates before bringing it to the table.

Another form of waiter service is known as 'squat service', where each waiter takes care of a table or group of tables with 10-12 guests. The dishes are usually communal and shared. Self-service is another option, where diners order and pay for their orders at the counter, but food is served to them when it's ready. This type of service is becoming increasingly popular in restaurants, as it allows customers to customize their orders and have more control over their dining experience.

Food trucks are a fun option for employees in good weather, but they often fall apart when the weather isn't cooperative. Lunch delivery programs are also becoming more popular, but managing them can be an enormous task for the person in charge. Family style service is another option, where dishes are placed in the center of the table and guests serve themselves. This type of service allows guests to interact with each other while they eat, creating a more social atmosphere.

Finally, there is buffet service, where guests serve themselves from a selection of dishes laid out on a table or counter. This type of service is great for large groups, as it allows everyone to choose what they want to eat without having to wait for their food to be served. With all these different types of service available, finding the right one for your restaurant can create a more pleasant experience for your diners. Systems development is supported by research in engineering (equipment); food science (safety, quality and nutrition); and operations management (system selection criteria and productivity).

Claire Ence
Claire Ence

Avid coffee geek. Lifelong rock climbing maven. Hardcore foodie & travel junkie!