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What is the wave method of service in banquets

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Does anyone in the hospitality service or catering business know what kind of banquet service is referred to \by the term "wave method".

Let me get a bit more ambitious ask whether anyone knows what is "follow up method" of banquet service and "avalanche service n banquets?  
post #2 of 17
 Been in the business a long time, Never heard this. It could be like roll the room. Whereas 3 servers carry out trays to center of the room and 2 servers are there to serve it, doing a whole table at one time

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #3 of 17
I can hazard a "guess" from the terms: * Wave = Entire room is a single station, service moves across the room like a wave, generally starting with head table, servers not connected with specific tables. Server(s) probably have specific duties, i.e. serve, remove, beverage, etc. * Avalanche = Entire room is a single station, service is all at once (more labor intensive), in other words, all tables served simultaneously. Server(s) probably have specific duties, i.e. serve, remove, beverage, etc. * Follow up = 24-32 covers per station (3-4 8 person rounds), one or two servers per station, generally would incorporate food runners to transport from kitchen to station area
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
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post #4 of 17

I have never come across these two terms myself ...I am also hazarding a guess in my experiance in banquet

Wave  ......French Service

Avalanche......Plated


Gypsy

 

My feet are firmly planted in mid air
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My feet are firmly planted in mid air
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post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
First of all thanks for your answers - Since i am a lecturer in F&B I can't rea;;y take a chance ith (educated) guesses - i needdefinite and certain answers.  Ay idea where i might find the answers to th above?

What i will do if you guys don't mind is post the text i found regrding these types of sit down banquet service and then perhaps you can tell me whether you know them by other names.  for example roll up service sounds like follow up to me and wae i think means the same - just different trms in the trade and in some texts.  is this ok?

Just give me a day to get the stuff from the net and a text book from my libray
post #6 of 17
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #7 of 17
 French Service   Real French service is 2 waiters working partners . One serves the roast from an Escoffier tray the other the vegetable from a similar try to the heated plate which has been placed before the guest. Sauce is ladled on the entree after presentation to guest  by the waiter from a sauce boat. White gloves are traditionally worn as well as tuxedos Soup is served from a silver tureen to the plate which has been placed before guest, Sometime the roast is carved  in the dining room from a grillerden or chariot table side . It is an elegant type of service. Nothing is pre -plated in kitchen. Usually 2 servers per every 10 guest. Plus captains and wine stewards for the wine service.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #8 of 17
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks again all of you

PeteMcCracken I am particularly impressed by your 'guess' and the links you provided for me.  Thanks for your time  What you said did roughly tally with he information you linked me to.  However some things are not quite clear to me.  Can you help? Here was your answer
Wave = Entire room is a single station, service moves across the room like a wave, generally starting with head table, servers not connected with specific tables. Server(s) probably have specific duties, i.e. serve, remove, beverage, etc

I would further ask
(i) Do you/they mean individual waiters (shuttling back and forth between the hot plate and tables to serve them or would a system of food runners and servers be followed in order to run the entire venu as a single station (which 'wave' purports to be)
(ii) Since the individual waiters or teams would be expected to cover a maximum number of covers say 18 pax (in case of individual waiters would they run in and out 6 times carying 3 pates eachtime or say 40 in case of a team wih food runner and servers) in a large baquet function say 150 pax there would be serveral waiters or teams servcing their allotted covers so is this not then the same as a station system service (except that there the stations or sections are larger?) - How then is the entire venue converted into one large station (which is what the reference in google books link also said)?

Please be patient and be with me on this one until i quite understand this thoroughly for my lecture to students!

Thanks
Edited by perfection - 4/30/10 at 11:44pm
post #10 of 17
perfection -

Wave method involved serving all guests at a table simultaneously by a team of waiters.  For example, a table of 8 will see four servers walking to their table from the kitchen in a line, each server with two plates, to surround the table.  The servers serve from their left hand in unison (every other guest gets served), rotate around the table one place and once again serve from their left.  While that team is returning to the kitchen, another team is entering the dining room.

It is basically a way to negate the need for serving trays, carrying heavy trays and also no plate covers.  Food comes right from the plating line onto the table.  Also, it prevents guests from having to wait a long time before eating, since the whole table is served within seconds.  Pretty impressive, actually.

I am pretty sure there is an explanation of it in Mike Roman's latest book about catering.

-Kevin
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks uptownkevin
I can understand what you said.  What i really need to know is WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THIS.  is this table of 8 the only table that they serve or will they serve several more in this manner by shuttling back to the hotplat to pick up another set of plated meals for the next table and so on until their entire section is covered.  this seens quite like an extravagant waste of labout they only seve these two covers and no more (apart from clearing). 

Further unless i know how the service proceeds (i.e. what  this team does next ) i would never be able to understand (or explain to my students) why it is called WAVE  

 

And what's Mike Roman's book and where is it available?

post #12 of 17
My impression is that the terminology, i.e. "wave", "avalanche",  "followup", refers to the pattern of service as perceived by the guests rather than details as to who does what on the service staff.

To my mind, an analogy might be a football stadium; a "wave" travels around the stadium, an "avalanche" is when the whole stadium stands at the same time (National Anthem?), and "follow-up" is a random pattern of fans standing up and sitting down.

From the servers standpoint, "wave" and "avalanche" are similar in that there is no relationship between server and table, only server and function; i.e. place plates, pick up plates, serve (refill) beverage(s), run food, regardless of table location but following the overall pattern of service. Servers are "specialists" rather than "generalists".

Follow-up, on the other hand, involves server(s) being responsible for specific tables rather than specific functions and providing all the service that the tables require. Servers are "generalists" rather than "specialists".

Then again, I could be way off-based...
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
OK -in the meantime till i ge my texts from the library (I'm on wait list) for the explanation of wave and followup given by certain authors, please help me with this one.
 
When an individual waiter, say Jim has  been allotted  an individual station of two rounnd tables seating 8 pax each at a sit-down banquet dinner.  Let us assume the service style is plated.  How would Jim bring ut these 16 plate.

a) shuttle in and outr 4 times to the dispensing area carrying in four plates each time?
b) bring the out in two trips of 8 each (or one trip with all 16 - unlikely though) on a large rectabgular tray resting it near the table to be served on a tray jack
c) bring in a plate carrier holding the16 plates which he will then proceed gto place in fromt of each guest in a predetermined order.     

Which of these scenarios would be most often used (or which is/are the one most practiced) WHEN WAITING STAFF ARE ALLOTTED INDIIVIDUAL STATIONS OF 16 TO 24 PERSONS AT A BANQUET?

I guess silver service (platter to plate) is quite impractical nowadays and would have a higher staff to guest ratio 
post #14 of 17
My choice would be to utilize a "food runner" to bring the tray(s) (B above) from the kitchen/plating area to a tray jack and let Jim place them on the tables.

If that is "his station", then, IMHO, food runner(s) need to keep his station supplied with what he needs as well as removing used dishes so that Jim can provide "follow-up" service to his assigned tables.
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
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post #15 of 17

Never mind.

post #16 of 17
I have been catering for 30 years, I never heard of the wave. I have heard of, "Get the Dam food out as fast as you can" or I'll be waving at you in the unemployment line.............Chef Bill
post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 

Here are the explanations given in two reputed text books 

FOLLOW UP SERVICE

Name of book  "DINING ROOM AND BANQUET NMANAGEMENT" by ANTHONY J STRIANESE (a us book) 

This is the most efficient method and quickest service if the staff can master the system. It takes planning, cooperation, and leadership by the banquet manager, the head service people, and the remaining service staff.
 
For example, in a banquet of 150 pax, the staff would be broken up into two teams of five. The responsibility of serving the food and removing the dirty dishes in the banquet room would be divided in half, for the function. Each  group would have a head service person to supervise its side of the room. Three members of the team would carry the food into the banquet room. The other two (including the head service person) would serve the food to the guests. The head service person would instruct the other service person in the correct order of service. Each team would obtain its food from an assigned plating area in the kitchen.
 
When it is time to clear the dirty dishes, all five members of the team work together in removing the dishes. They work from the head table backwards toward the kitchen doors. The banquet manager should be in the banquet room making sure that all the guests get served and that the service is done correctly.
 
The advantages of this of service are that it is fast and that all the guests are served in proper order. This is considered the best serving system from the kitchen’s point of view, because the food is picked up quickly from the kitchen.
 
The main disadvantage is that it is difficult to teach temporary workers to use this system. They generally lack the organization and team work it requires.

WAVE SERVICE ORGANISATION 
Name of book:  F&B Service authored by Denns Lillicrap and John Cousins (British Book)

 

Wave service can be used mainly when meals are plated, although some establishments also use this style of service organization for silver service and other forms of service. It is a way of saving on staffing for conventional service and /or speeding up service for plated systems. The term wave comes from the approach where tables are not served or cleared altogether but are served over a period of time, with guests on some tables being served quickly at one time before the service on other tables is started.
 
The alternative is for a large group of staff to work as a team, serving one table completely at a time before going on to the next. This is especially useful when plated service is being used for the food.
 
The resulting effect of adopting these approaches is that tables are served throughout the room, over a period, but with each individual table’s service being completed quickly.
 
Wave service may also be used for functions where guests are seated on a top table and sprigs. In this case, sections of the banquet tables are served before moving to another section of the table layout.

PLEASE READ AND LET ME KNOW WHETHER THEY ARE THE SAME FORMS OF SERVICE ORGANISATION EXPRESSED IN DIFFERENT WAYS AND ANY OTHER COMMENTS OR NAMES THAT YOU KNOW IT BY (SUCH AS ROLL UP SEVICE MENTIONED IN THE FIRST REPLY)

Thanks
 

 

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