thank you, is there a way to cost out the buffet before i offer the menu. my owners what to know the cost before they approve the menu. They want to make sure the price the guest is paying will cover all the expenses.
I suspect you're really asking how much food your quests will eat. Lotta threads about that in the catering section.
The actual costing is very easy. (Sales Price per Person)=(Estimated Food Cost per person)/(Food Cost %). Or from a different perspective, (Sales Price per Person)x(desired Food Cost %)=(Food Cost per Person) if you want to figure out what you can offer for what the market will bear.
Then you can check your projections against reality by (Buffet Revenue)/(Food Cost of eaten and wasted)=(Actual Food Cost %).
One thing I've learned about buffets, especially when it comes to high ticket items, is that sometimes it's not a matter of how much they eat, as in how much you LET them eat. If you let them, buffet patrons will eat lobster tails till you're living in a fridge box. So you pace your output of lobster tails, and have your roast beef guy get ever thinner and a little slower.
Thin to win.... Your carver can put you in the poor house!