The decision between the services loaned or in buffet can bring several differences in the planning of your restaurant and even the equipment you must buy.

There are several decisions in common to make for various types of restaurant that you wish to open. But there are other steps that do not remain the same, depending on the type of service you choose to offer.

The main service options are: the loan or buffet. A la carte” restaurants with individually served options differ a lot from those offering buffets for self-service.

Buffets are very popular in today’s restaurants. Although they are not the sole option of the establishment, many offer it as an option. However, many opt for the buffet as the only option for food distribution. So, if this is the type of service adopted by your business it is important to know well what is different from an a la carte restaurant and what the new challenges will be.

The variety of food served

Most customers choose buffet restaurants for the variety of options that can be chosen at once and in the quantity desired by them.
This is beneficial for users who prioritize price, after all, this service is cheaper than if each dish was ordered individually.

However, this characteristic of buffet restaurants also has advantages for the business itself. In a service with a more extensive and fixed menu, used by the restaurants on loan, one should always be with the complete stock and ready to meet the customers’ requests. In the case of buffet restaurants, you can adjust your daily menu according to what is in stock. Thus, it is possible to make adjustments whenever necessary.

Besides, the variation on the menu with special dishes will always be seen in a different way. As a surprise, a pleasure. So, it’s obvious that your restaurant is winning: it’s a great way to keep the customers satisfied.

Flow of operations

In borrowed restaurants, besides the need to have a fixed menu of options, customers can also make other requests for the attendants.
By preference of the customers, chefs often need to change the preparation of the dish in some way. As requested. There is no doubt that this makes the work inside the kitchen more difficult.
In buffet restaurants, all the options available are already on the distribution counter.

In other words, there is no way to customize the items in the dish according to the customer’s preference. As a result, these establishments have a more regular flow in their production. There is no need for last minute changes in the services within the kitchen.

On the other hand, it is important to say that the replacement of food must be constant and it must always be at the right temperature. Therefore, the equipment that guarantees this must be of professional quality. When it comes to investing, it is necessary to invest wisely.

Equipment needed for buffet restaurants

Restaurants that choose to offer buffet need extra equipment, different from those on loan. See below the equipment needed for all types of buffet:

  • Electrical Rechaud or Distribution Modules;
  • Thermal and refrigerated buffet.


When you choose to insert exclusively the buffet system for your restaurant, it is not necessary to have so many employees receiving orders and serving customers in the salon. In this type of service the customer places his own food directly from the self-service counter. Thus, all you need is a few employees in the salon to monitor the service, offer drinks options, clean the tables.

Also, in the kitchen, the cooks must be ready to make sure that the food is prepared on time and that there is always enough to replenish the restaurant buffet. After all, it is necessary to keep serving food until the moment the clients show up.


This is a great disadvantage of buffet restaurants. Chefs need to cook a large amount of food with the risk of seeing it wasted. Which is definitely not good for your pocket.

Buffets should always be full and attractive to take customers to them. The last customer to arrive should have the impression of being the first to serve himself.

It is unpredictable whether or not all this food will be consumed. There is no way to be sure how many people will go to your restaurant, no matter how assertive your planning is. Therefore, it is very important to make a daily average to avoid excessive loss.
On the other hand, they do not generate this kind of problem. Even if they require you to spend in other points that in buffets are not necessary, as we have seen.

Whatever the case, borrowed or buffets for restaurants, it is essential to have a careful business plan, to have equipment that optimizes operations and leaves customers satisfied. And remember: when choosing your type of service, take into consideration the location of your restaurant. This will have an enormous weight on the success of your venture, because each location has a different audience, which has different preferences.