Americans love to eat. That is no surprise. One of the most popular ways to enjoy a good meal is to eat at a buffet - but when and where was the All-You-Can-Eat style buffet first introduced?
Here is the history behind the buffet and why they are so popular.
The modern style buffet started in France back in the 18th century. From there it quickly spread across Europe. The food was spread out on a sideboard or a buffet table, hence the name “buffet.” In the later 19th century, the buffet became a very popular type of meal, especially in the English-speaking countries. The buffet came in two forms, lunch buffets and dinner buffets. Lunch buffets were a light meal between breakfast and dinner. The dinner buffet was heartier. At that time, all buffets had food that were only consumed by fork or spoon, no knives.
As time went on, the buffet evolved as what we know it today. All types of beverages are served such as sodas, water, coffee, hot and cold teas, milk and juices. Alcoholic beverages are rarely consumed and are a special order. Hot entrees can be about anything from fish, beef, chicken, soup, pasta or pork. All prepared in a variety of traditions. Cold entrees include salads, rolls, lobster, shrimp, cheese, sliced meat, fruit and sandwiches. Desserts are generally plentiful and often have their own dedicated serving station.
Modern buffets are so popular because they offer a variety of foods at a reasonable price. There is no waiting to order or waiting to be served. People with large appetites find buffets very satisfying. Buffets can be a pleasant change of pace from the traditional sit-down meal. Meals can be created with more meat and less carbs. Salads can be built with only desired toppings and covered by just the right dressing. Often it is a chance to try an entrée they have never had before. Maybe the best part is going back for seconds or even thirds for the better entrees.
The buffet to go to in Henderson, Nevada is the Boxcar Buffet at Railroad Pass Hotel and Casino. Railroad Pass, established in 1931 is the nation’s longest running casino. The buffet has a full live action station to “cook to your order.” Guests enjoy all you can eat steak, shrimp scampi or thick slow roasted prime rib. The dessert bar has various pastries, pies, cakes and brownies. Sugar-free desserts are offered. Every day the buffet offers a different theme, from Italian to Chinese to Mexican. Railroad Pass guarantees their guests will not go home hungry.