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Wednesday, October 26, 2011


My good friend Jeremy used to crack up at this question "um... is the fish fresh?"  What answer do you possibly think the waiter/supermarket fish guy/cook is going to say? "Actually sir, the fish I am about to sell you is five days old (from when we got it) and is starting to turn just a bit, but I have no doubt you will be pleased with its quality."

If every supermarket, sandwich shop, caterer, pizza chain, fast food franchise in the country claims its food is "fresh" and "of the highest quality" who in this great nation is serving the "mediumly aged to old" and "low quality" food?

Fresh is a continuum.  Everyone can call their food Fresh, but who's is Fresher?

At one catering business the mashed potatoes are fresh out of the can.  At another they are freshly made from dehydrated potato flakes.  And another peels the little yukon gold suckers with indentations and blemishes and the cooks occasionally peel their own skin and get their fingers cramped from all the tedious work to make "fresh" mashed potatoes.  Is it all fresh?  Yes.  Is it all honest?  That is the better question, and very much a personal one.

At one fast food place the beef has "non meat fillers".  At another sandwich shop the roast beef out of a vacuum sealed bag, the same they serve at every other sandwich shop in town.  At ours, it is medium rare to medium flank steak cooked every couple of days.  It is all fresh.  Ours is more honest.  (okay, okay... it tastes better too, you dragged it out of me.)

We aren't playing 'holier than thou' (okay, maybe a little).  We put out honest food.  We buy as much as we can from our local farmers and from the farmer's market.  We try to stay as seasonal as possible.  We always want to look ourselves in the mirror and feel like we put out solid, honest, wholesome food and trade it for your hard earned dollars.  It's what we try to do everyday. 


Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Palmares is a cycling term that means a list of great accomplishments.  Here is our version of palmares. 

We received this letter from Glenn and Angie, a Seattle couple who came to Walla Walla for a winery wedding in September.  Glenn and Angie are part of something we see more and more of these days, folks who have very little or no connection to Walla Walla who choose to get married here because, well... Walla Walla is an awesome destination wedding location.  Neither are wine geeks or afficianados, they came to WW because of the experience WW provides. 

They had a smaller reception at Basel Cellars, fifty or so guests.  The weather was great, the grounds perfect, as always, and the food once again made our guests and ourselves happy.  Here is the letter we received the other day... Angie loves exclamation points!!!

Thank you so much for everything!  The food was beyond wonderful and all the guests raved about it!  We couldn't have asked for a better experience and your staff was fabulous!
If you want us to write a recommendation for you to any potential clients let us know!
Thank you!!
Glenn and Angie"


Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Anatomy of a Party

September 1st Graze Catering turned Five Years Old.  September was too busy to have a party, so we had one October the 2nd.  We didn't feel like we were cheating, there was only one job recorded in the month of September 2006.  

We invited a bunch of friends, and clients, and suppliers, and neighbors, and event space operators, and rental store owners, and landlords, and all the other people associated with the business. 

Then we bought the animals.  A whole pig and a whole goat.  We got the pig from Blue Valley Meats, and the goat from the Youth Market Auction at the county fair.

Then we seasoned the pig and goat.  The pig we inserted garlic cloves into and salted the meat for three days.  The goat we gave an herb and garlic rub, and salted it for two days.


Then we went to the farmers market, like we do every week for our weddings and events, and filled the back of the expedition.

Pig goes in the cajun microwave.  Goat goes in the oven.

Light the fire.  Wait.

Open the box, flip the pig.  Wait.

Carve and serve.

135 guests.  Great company, good beer and wine.  Here is to five more years.


Friday, October 14, 2011

This Is How We Do It...

Montell Jordan wrote the classic R&B tune "This Is How We Do It" in 1995.  I still want to dance when I hear that song. 

This is how we do it deep in our creative minds at the sandwich shop.   

We ran this special the last few days.  It was super yummy.  Shaved prime rib, sauteed peppers, onions, garlic, and fresh oregano.  We charged $8.95.  Which makes me wonder how Subway/Quiznos/everyotherprefabslicedmeatplace can look themselves in the eye and charge $8.95 (or whatever it is they charge) for a "steak" sandwich. 

Ours is good.  Ours is real.  We make your tastebuds dance.  Just like Montell.