Menus with limited options that adhere to a fixed price are known as a fixed menu. There are two types of menus that fall under this category, and they are the tabled d’Hote menu and the Prix Fixe menu. Neither one of these menus are made to change hence why they are referred two as a fixed menu.
Some individuals confused the static menu with a fixed menu due to the similar name even though they are completely different menu types. It becomes obvious once you look at fixed menu examples and compare them to static menu examples.
When is it proper to use fixed menus?
Fixed menus offer a multi course meal for a fixed price. With a Prix Fixe menu pronounced, pree fix, it is often customized to cater to an individual. Sometimes there is a choice for two at a specified price it can be encircled for two separate meals or one that is meant to be shared between two patrons.
There are restaurants that have buffet set up where you are charged in a prix fixe fashion, as in paying a fixed price per person. In a table d’hote menu setting, it is offered as a multi course meal with a few different choices for each course. In this like the prix fixe, it is offered at a fixed price this is referred to as a menu set.
When comparing the fixed menu examples, you will notice the variation between the two, table d’hote tends to be more flexible of the two due to the multi meal choices.
When are price fixed menus right to use?
To be frank it appears that you can use them whenever, anything from being an everyday menu choice, to something for a special occasion such as Valentine’s Day. Fixed menus are perfect for a tasting menu, the reason being that these two menu types are multi course and lean towards smaller portions.
You will find that fixed menu examples and fine dining establishments and at certain contemporary restaurants. If used correctly fixed menus can be a way to streamline meal service and act as a catalyst improving your food cost margins.
How can a home chef use fixed menu styles for the family?
The first step is to pick out your main it should be something that you are confident you will make well. It is also a good idea to understand flavor profiles so you can pair both your starter and your sweet end, your dessert, to finish off a meal.
If you are not sure about flavor profiles, you will want to start with the spices or sauces you plan to use in your main dish. If you are still undecided pick out of flavor cuisine like Italian or Greek.
When I am stumped, I turn to Pinterest for ideas or information and sometimes even recipes. It is good to remember that you are creating a three-course meal and portion control should be kept in mind so the whole meal can be enjoyed.
I like to start with what is in season for fresh ingredients, they are more flavorful and higher in nutrients.
It is ok to be basic
It is OK to start with something basic like a salad or a light soup. Dessert can also be something simple like a fortified red wine such as a Port or a lovely German Eiswein, it is a refreshing lightly sweet dessert wine.
When creating a menu, it doesn’t have to be elaborate, sometimes the simple approach is the most elegant. A quote that has stuck with me is “Simplicity carried to an extreme becomes elegant.” I cannot remember where the quote is from though.
Looking at other fixed menu examples not just the ones I supplied can help get the creative juices flowing. It also helps to compare my fixed menu examples to other examples; every chef has their own style in tastes I prefer seafoods as my protein choice and possibly have a mild cranberry obsession.
I hope that the fixed menu examples I have supplied add a new understanding of these two types of menus.