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Monday, June 22, 2009


Palmares is a cycling term which means a list of great accomplishments. Our version of palmares. A thank you from our Greek Wedding.

"Hi John,
I just wanted to tell you how impressed and utterly amazed I was by your quick and perfect set-up, great servers, and most of all, your fantastic food! I knew you guys were good but WOW.... we were blown away and so were all of our guests. I had at least 10 people independently comment on how fantastic the food was and how pleasant the whole wedding was... which would not have been possible without you and your crew. It was such a pleasure to work with you...

So, please pass along to your servers and staff how pleased we were by the top-notch, friendly, efficient service and to you: what an amazing meal. We LOVE good food and eat out frequently at delicious restaurants and your food was some of the best I've had.

Thank you again for being so easy to work with and helping make our wedding night and party memorable and highly enjoyable.

All the best,
Carolyn (& Pete)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Carolyn's Greek Fest and Leann's Tex-Mex Throwdown

Two more down. Fourteen more to go (we picked up another wedding this week).

Here is how a typical conversation with a bride and groom transpires. I ask what they like food wise, what the feel of the reception will be like, and if any themes are possible to build around. Carolyn let it slip that her future husband has a crazy long and confusing Greek name, something like Korfilaiatisisas (but not really, I never once tried to pronounce it, people mangle my seemingly simple Lastoskie daily). So I proposed a greek buffet and they loved the idea. Leann told me she loved mashed potatoes, and heard we made really good ones, but then she mentioned many family guests were from the Southwest, so we tossed the mashers idea out the window and went with a simple Tex-Mex theme.

The Greek Bazaar was in the Dunham Cellars Hangar Room (they are still undecided if wedding receptions will be held there often, but it is a great spot, beg and plead to let them be your host). Here is a shot of the reception room.

Mill Creek Garden played host for the Tex Mex Reception, awesome hosts as always. We didn't bring the camera to the reception, hopefully some will be emailed our way.

New Favorites Things
  • Greek Mothers. Pete's mom approached me towards the end of the evening and offered beautiful words regarding our food and service. I thanked her profusely and asked if the buffet was Greek enough (as this was our first crack at a Greek themed... anything). "It was soooo Greek!" she exclaimed. "Oh my goodness, my husband even told me this is better and more Greek than his cooking!" Kinder words could not have be offered.
  • The Grill at Dunham. We grilled/roasted 20 whole chickens that had been marinating in oregano, lemon, pepper, and salt for 24 hours. That machine is incredible, it sounds like a jet engine when the burners are on. I can't wait to use it again.


Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Andrea and Michaela's Weddings (Not to each other)

Two down, Fifteen to go.

We kicked off the wedding season in grand style Saturday. Andrea and Marc celebrated their union at Hence Cellars with 175 guests and a huge appetizer buffet. Michaela and Taylor filled Areus for a 130 person family style meal blowout.

Taylor and Michaela's Menu
- passed appetizers during cocktail hour
- whole leaf ceasar salad, poached salmon, poached shrimp, seared scallops, garlicky croutons
- red wine glazed grilled beef tenderloin with bordelaise sauce, rosemary grilled chicken with herbed vinaigrette, israeli cous cous and spring vegetables
- blanched asparagus, roasted walla walla spring onions, sauteed morels

Andrea and Marc's Menu
- too many appetizers to list... here are the highlights
- deviled whole egg, caper, shallot, dijon, mayo mixture
- french styled pulled pork
- paninis, turkey and bacon, portabella mushroom and roasted red pepper
- shrimp and scallop skewers with lemon butter

New (not so) Favorite Things:
  • My son was born 5 1/2 years ago. After a short nicu stay and a healthy period of growth the head lady and I threw a party in his honor. I was a teacher at the time, but did the food for the 70 or so guests out of our little kitchen. It was a Spring theme, asparagus, grilled oysters, a picnic ham, and one of my favorite things ever, deviled eggs (a version ever so similar to Chef Rick Mahan's at Waterboy in Sacramento). To be tricky, I perfectly hard boiled 150 eggs, had my 80 year old grandmother peel most of them (she always wants a job, to this day she reminds me of her slow egg torture) (which left us with 100 perfectly intact eggs), sliced off a bit from the bottom, sliced off a cap from the top, scooped out the yolk (which left us 80 intact eggs), made the deviled mixture, piped the mix into the standing eggs (which left us with 70 intact eggs), and put the original top back on. The end result is a standing hard boiled egg, unblemished, filled unbeknowst to the guest with pure delight. I was thrilled with the result, but downcast due to the amazing amount of time and effort it required. I vowed never to do them again for more than say... ten people. But I am stupid, and forgetful, and temporarily lost my mind when discussing the menu with Andrea and her mother (Anne from Amore Flowers). And so I agreed, no proposed, to do my special eggs for 175 people. And the day before the reception I spent 5 and 1/2 hours working on eggs... only eggs. So again I proclaim (and will probably forget) to never again do my special eggs for more than 10 people.


Monday, June 1, 2009


It has been a busy May here at Graze Catering. So busy we keep forgetting the camera. Here are two very nice thank you's from two very nice clients.

From Shari and Otto's 25th anniversary dinner at Longshadows. A four course family style meal. Arugula and Beet Salad, Sweet Onion Soup and Caramelized Onion Custard, Olive Oil Poached Halibut with Red Onion Jam, Fehrenbacher Farm Leg of Lamb with Crispy Polenta Cakes and Creamed Spinach, Dessert from The Patisserie.

"John: We can't thank you enough for what was truly the highlight of our anniversary weekend. Our dinner at Longshadows was absolutely amazing, from the appetizers through dessert. I could live on that beet salad! The tables were beautiful and your crew did a great job. Right down to the full moon and beautiful view, the evening was perfect. If you ever need recommendations, please use our name. We think we had one friend taking pictures that night. We will check with him and forward you anything we have."

Thanks again.Shari and Otto Klein

From the Kirkman House luncheon. A plated composed salad, Butter Lettuce Leaf with a Roast Chicken Waldorf Salad, Patisserie Mini Croissant, Blanched Asparagus with Romanesco Sauce, and a Perfect Hard Boiled Egg.

"Hi John, Thank you so much for all of your hard work; I cannot say enough about the perfect meal and service for the Kirkman House’s inaugural luncheon! The mix of foods, the portions, the presentation….it was all wonderful. I look forward to working with you in the future."

Regards, Kirsten R. Schober Executive DirectorKirkman House Museum