Finally, you got your list of dishes on your restaurant menu, but how to present it to your guests in the best possible way?
In the world of culinary art is well known that the appearance of food is one of the most important factors that will attract or reject your guests to choose a specific meal.
It is the specific way how food is placed on the plate. Do you know how to create fusion of colors or use interesting alternative plates? This will make a first impression that your guest receives and will decide whether it will be love at first sight or not.
If you think that you can’t do this I will convince you that you are wrong, and that with these tips and little effort you will succeed.
There are so many ways how one meal can be served and presented. Learn the basic rules about serving and food presentation. How to use an unusual techniques for food presentation with simple plates, and how can create interesting food presentation just with use of unusual kitchen utensils. I’ll say more about the modern way of food presentation, methods and tools that you will needed and use of technological breakthroughs for futuristic slow food lovers.
Who is Responsible Person for Food Presentations in Your Restaurant?
Depending on the type, size and capacity of the restaurant responsible person can be your cook, server, bartender, specially trained staff for these actions, or guests in case of self-service in your restaurant.
But no matter who is serving food in your restaurant, he or she must be familiar with the basic rules for food presentation.
Basic Rules For Food Presentation
There are certain rules that you need to follow, so you could be able to master some advanced techniques for food presentation in your restaurant:
- Plate should not never be overloaded with food, but should not be even a seemingly empty
- It is always necessary to leave blank the outer part of the plate along the edge.
- You need to create color contrast on the plate.
- Forget about symmetry, asymmetrical shapes are welcome.
- Mix large and small, soft and crunchy, bright and dark colors.
- Keep uniformity when it comes to portion size.
- Do not overdo with sauces, rather served them separately.
- If you need to serve chicken skewers, meatball or shrimp rather use odd number of certain food than even numbers, it will look more interesting on the plate.
I will also mention one old rule that chefs in many restaurants are still using. You can use it too but you do not have to stick to it. The old rule says that you have to look at the plate as a clock, and set specific types of foods at specific hours. At a 11 you should set carbohydrates (pasta, rice, potatoes), vegetables at 2 and in a case of dinner, at 6 you should set proteins, main meal (fish, meat, mushrooms). This old fashioned way of serving meals has its positive side and the one is that helps you to provide similar portion size. This aspect is very important part of food waste reduction management as well as for the calculation of costs and its impact in final restaurant profit.
Japanese Food Presentation
Japanese style of food presentation has had a major impact on food design in general. Minimalism is present everywhere in Japan including kitchen and culinary art. We can describe it as the beauty of simplicity and uniqueness.
Japanese would never put different kind of food on one plate, they rather separated it into several little bowls. This way of presentations removes all doubts about matching colors and forms, so if you do not have the talent to create a harmonious dish, this could be a good choice for you. The dish that you use take a major role in food appearance. They can be very simple or decorated with various motifs. The vegetable and meat is cut into the small pieces – that are suitable to eat it with chopsticks.
If you think that your restaurant offers food that can not be served in this way, see how looks serving of fries on Japanese way. Irresistible!
Vertical Forms for Creative Chefs
Vertical food presentation has opened an entirely new direction of food design. Create a real masterpieces and beautiful sculptures on your plate. The main food is often placed in the middle of the plate while the rest of it remains empty or is discreetly decorated with sauce or spices, and looks like a signature on the artwork. For this kind of serving you will need a lot of imagination, skills and practice, but the result will certainly justify your effort.
Vertical food serving is common in fine restaurants with full service. It is not good choice for fast-food restaurants, primarily due to the time that is required for this job.
Tip: Try Landscape Plating
Take inspiration from landscape gardens, choose tropical bloom or Zen garden. For this style of plating there are a lot of different variationsyou can make.
Abstract Forms for Food Presentation
This method is a favorite choice of bravest and most imaginative chefs! Express yourself like an artists who enjoy creating the abstract artwork! Forget about forms, structures, height and width of dishes, let your food on plate to look natural or create a provocative appearance. The dish is presented in a seemingly random but interesting way, as it is scattered on the plate without any order and rules. Use large white plates for the best results. Combine lots of different colors on your plate. This is necessary for the best results of presentation.
Food Garnishes and Decoration
Decoration of dishes is very important, it gives personality to specific meal and final touch to your delicious story. It can be done on many ways, but in any case, it is recommended that you use edible food and spices that will improve taste and act as a supplement of the main course. For example, the fish is served with lemon, orange with yellow risotto or various syrups with desserts.
Today we can also see that food garnishing go one step furthered and chefs are freely using inedible ingredients for decoration, so we can often see flowers that can not be eaten on our plates. With God’s help I hope that are not toxic.
Restaurant Food Presentation Ideas for Kids
Visual effect has the greatest impact on kids, and if kids eat vegetables that is beautifully served in your restaurant – adults will love to re-visit your restaurant too! Provide a kid’s menu that looks like the result of the kid’s imagination. Kids meals could look like cartoon’s heroes, animals or popular toys. Become one of kids frinedly restaurants! Take a look some of great ideas for kids food presentation at the following pictures.
How would you respond if you get sauce served in a test tube instead of the usual bowl? I’m sure that you would be pleasantly surprised. Free your mind and present food in the alternative crockery and cutlery. Serve soup in unusual bowls or coffee pots instead of the usual plates. Juice will look interesting if you to served it in an unusual vase. Go one step further and courageously serve the main course on the lid of the pot or wide glass jar. The lid jars can serve as the plate for salad!
Food Presentation Trends – Organic Plates
While the world-famous chefs advise that you use only a large white plates for food presentation why don’t you go one step further and use the service and dishes made â€‹â€‹from natural materials. Everything natural and organic is more popular each day, so why you should not use plates and spoons made â€‹â€‹from wood or stone? Even uncut raw forms of piece of wood are in use as shown in the picture below or stone spoon that specifically provide a rustic touch to your food and restaurant. Interesting earthen jars besides their attractive look are very practical for serving hot meals such as soups as they keep the desired heat for a longer time.
Preparation and Presentation of Food In Front of Guests
Preparation and presentation of food in front of guests table is one of the most popular ways of serving meals in restaurants around the world. This service is especially suitabale for restaurants that offer dishes that do not require long thermal processing. The customer is able to see preparation of food and serving on plates in front of their eyes. Curious guest and chef’s skills will contribute to show in the restaurant, which is certainly one of the best ways for restaurant promotion and nice atmosphere. Why would not not make this show at least for your VIP guests?
Following dishes can be prepared (or completed) in front of guests:
- Cold starters
- Hot meat and fish dishes
The dishes are usually prepared in front of guests table in the following ways:
- Preparing and serving cold dishes and appetizers from trolley (cutting cheese, mixing salad, mixing tartare steak )
- Cutting meat or fish filleting
- Cooking in front of guests
- Preparing Fondi on the guest’s table
- Flambé savory and sweet dishes
- Preparing food on a hot stone
- Grilling in front of guests
People would love to see how chefs work, just enjoy in cooking. In addition to preparing, food presentation is of great importance. It is not uncommon that in popular restaurant chef make a big show including acrobation, and it is recommended that in addition to culinary skills chef has acrobatic skills too!
In some other restaurant it is popular that guests prepare food by their own, using raclette or hot stone for example. Everything depends on type of restaurant and wishes of clientele that visit it.
Tools for Food Garnishing and Presentation
If you want to become master of food presentation you will need some tools. Find adequate shop that sell tools for food garnishing. The most important toolswill be your mind and hands but the performance and speed of serving customers in your restaurant will significantly depend on the availability of appropriate accessorize. This equipment is similar to equipment that is used in surgery. Let’s see the list:
- Kitchen scissors
- Culinary tweezers in different sizes
- Various knives and scalpels for carving fruits and vegetables
- Choppers for fruits and vegetables
- Molds and rings – variety of forms
- Silicon mat
- Spoons, forceps, needles
- Syringes, sticks
- Spatulas and brushes for decoration.
These tools are usually sold in sets. Search for supplier of restaurant tools that will suit to your needs. It would be best if they were made â€‹â€‹from stainless steel, that guarantee quality and durability.
Future of Food Presentation – Levitating Plate
Following video shows how the use of new technological breakthroughs, namely electromagnetic induction, one dish can be presented to all slow food lovers. Levitating plate above the table will attract many extravagant guests who crave for unusual things and make them really happy.
Food presentation in your restaurant will depending on type of restaurant and the food in your restaurant offer, but in any case it is a reflection of creativity and concern for your customers. Guests will certainly recognize that.
How the food is presented in your restaurant, and what impact the creative presentation has in selling and menu pricing?
What are your impressions? Share your experiences with us!