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How much should an "all you can eat" buffet cost?

Meal Mart in Monsey is offering that for dinner at 14.99 per adult/child over 12 and 5.99 per child below 12. They had some sort of meat (pepper steak-like), lo mein, sesame chicken nuggets, kugel, potatoes, chicken soup and squash soup. I thought the 14.99 was a bit steep, but my 12 year old son ate enough for 3 people so I guess he got his fair share. What do you think of the price?

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  1. Dairy places that I know of in NJ that have all you can eat buffets (2) are 9.99, the offerings seem more varied than what you describe above, but a) its dairy food and b) they do not have a lower price for children. I think the chinese buffet in Manville is roughly the same price you see at this Meal Mart, not sure if it has much more of a variety than that. All you can eat lunch buffet at Shalom Bombay in Manhattan, also meat, I think is 14.99, also limited items to chose from.

    1. I think that's fair. I remember Shang chai in Brooklyn had a buffet that was about $20/person. If you walked in, you had to pay.

      1. What do entrees cost? What do you usually spend on a meal there? There is too much variability in real estate, staff, and ingredient costs to make comparisons useful. I'd just say that the cost should be slightly more than the cost of an appetizer + entree that is available through the buffet.

        1. Price doesn't seem out of line, but it doesn't sound like much of a buffet. Two main course choices and a couple of side dishes?

          1 Reply
          1. re: queenscook

            I agree. Not enough choices, especially protein.

          2. If you had guests like me they would be losing money on $15 all you can eat:) that is why I LOVE buffet style events. At weddings I find the main to be so anticlimactic compared to the schmorg.

            1 Reply
            1. re: MartyB

              Agree strongly! Bedeken food is often far better than wedding food. I don't go for the food, so I'm not disappointed as a guest, but if I were paying for the thing, I'd be up in arms over the quality of dinner food. I think the caterers just naturally pull out the stops for the bedeken because many of those people will leave before dinner, and they want the maximal exposure for their best food, because it's an investment in their future earnings. Once people are dancing, the food tends to be totally secondary.