Your Top 5 Catering Questions Answered

As most of our brides know, Lesner Inn is more than just a venue – we are a full service catering facility. By providing all food and alcohol, we take care of a big part of your wedding checklist. When we show new brides around the venue, we get endless questions and we thought we should share some of the often asked ones with you to help with planning!

  1. What is the difference between a consumption bar and a host bar?

This is probably the question that we are asked most often. A host bar is your traditional open bar where you pay per person, per hour for as much or as little as they want to drink. Whereas, with a consumption bar, you pay for a set amount of alcohol and once that is finished, you can switch to a cash bar. Now depending on the price of the beer, wine and liquor you are offering and how much your guests drink, this could last all night or only for a few hours. It is up to you how much money you want to put toward the bar and you know your guest’s drinking preferences better than we do!

  1. Why should I get a food package? Wouldn’t it be cheaper to have an a la carte menu?

While it is true that an a la carte menu can be cheaper, you are paying for a set amount of food and once it is done, that is all you are getting – even if not everyone had a chance to get a plate. In order to avoid this massive faux pas, we suggest paying for a food package. Our food packages offer an hour of continuous service which means we will keep cooking to keep up with your appetite. Loving the bacon wrapped scallops? We are going to keep making them for that full hour so you can enjoy as many as your heart desires! Our packages also include a bridal bag, a beverage station of water, iced tea and coffee, a champagne/sparkling cider toast, and cake cutting service. Some venues will charge about $2/person just to cut your cake! We would rather save you some money and include it to create the total package.

  1. What is a vendor meal and do I have to feed them?

Yes! Your photographer has been with you all day while you get pampered and primped, your DJ has been on his feet pumping music for your guests, and your coordinator has been running around trying to make sure your grandmother is in the right place for the start of the ceremony. While you are paying for their services, you want to make sure they have the stamina to keep up with the party. No one wants a DJ with low blood sugar or a fainting photographer. Many vendors include a meal in their contracts too so you need to make sure that you are fulfilling all of their requirements.
Lesner Inn will make it easy on you and we can provide boxed meals OR we offer guest meals for ½ price for your vendors. We know they deserve a quick snack on such a big day!

  1. Buffets, plated meals, stations, heavy hors d’oeuvres…which is most popular?

Ah this one is tricky. Do you and your fiancé love snacking throughout the night? Then maybe heavy hors d’oeuvres is up your alley. Do you prefer to create your own plate and load up on your favorite dishes? Then a buffet or stations fits you perfectly. Or do you want to make sure your guests stay in their seats throughout the meal? Go for plated then. It all really depends on YOU. We can’t tell you what you prefer, this is one time where we have no professional opinion!

  1. I’m allergic to….can you work around that? My aunt is a vegetarian, do you have anything she can eat?

Yes! We have seen probably every allergy and sensitivity walk through our door. When you meet with your event manager, they can show you our vegetarian, gluten free, vegan, and shellfish safe options. If we don’t have a menu already made for your particular request, our chef would be more than happy to accommodate any allergies. On your big day, you don’t want to be worrying about your guests, let us take care of it.

Obviously this doesn’t cover all of the questions that you may have but that is what we are here for. Feel free to call our office at 757-481-1122 or email us at with any concerns!


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