Your company has seen impressive growth the past few years, especially in venues! What is the secret sauce to creating and building such an acclaimed catering company and what do you foresee in the next few years?
Our vision statement is “To Create and Inspire.” Whether it’s inspiring our clients, our peers, or even (especially!) our own team, we know that success comes with keeping the big picture in mind and making sure that each choice we make propels us towards that goal. The other significant element of our growth is an open heart. Norm, the owner of 24 Carrots, has always been open to making space at 24 Carrots for the right fit – including our amazing staff and team, and notably, our venues. That in turn continues to allow us to create and inspire. It’s an exhilarating cycle that keeps us going.
Eight years ago, you fashioned a “milk and donuts” themed table for a Ceremony Magazine photo shoot. It was a first look at what has since become a donut phenomenon at weddings and events everywhere. What themes are you styling now that might have the same staying power?
We’re in a season where styling and aesthetics are a huge part of the guest experience, and also a time where food is more interactive than ever. Interaction sometimes means chef-interactive, where guests get a sneak peek into the behind-the-scenes production. Sometimes interaction is the form of a display like our brunch wall, where we built out a backdrop with shelves for guests to “grab and go” mini brunch bites. Regardless of what the next food phenomenon is, you can definitely bet it’ll be something that guests are excited to talk about, snap, and share!
What is the best approach to serving food for specialty diets?
Depending on what restrictions your guests may have, most caterers are able to easily adjust menu items, or may have a dedicated menu for specialty diets. Regardless of the severity of the allergy or dietary preference, the most important part is communicating that information to your caterer. Who has the allergy, where they are sitting, and it is also essential to distinguish whether a guest has an allergy, or a preference (i.e. gluten), so we may prepare accordingly. Whether it’s a simple adjustment or having a completely vegan menu, specialty meals are a part of our standard service to ensure that you’re celebrating to your fullest party-potential!
What are some unique rehearsal dinner ideas?
We always encourage our couples to integrate their style and personality into their whole wedding, including the menu and bar! The rehearsal dinner is the perfect opportunity to showcase your relationship – whether it’s a cocktail party at the local brewery where you met, or having your caterer create a fusion menu of your two cultures. We like to view rehearsal dinners as another opportunity to integrate some of your wedding wish list ideas that didn’t make the cut for the big day, but still worth celebrating.
What are today’s most underrated dishes or ingredients?
Vegetables! And great side dishes in general. We have become such a protein-centric community, and while we’re big fans of our classic filet, we also know that some of our client favorites are the side dishes. Full of flavor and personality, don’t overlook the vegetables on your dish.
What’s the next big thing in wedding catering?
We’ve seen a demand for restaurant-style menus. Instead of picking a standard wedding buffet, our clients have been asking for chef-selected dishes with items that already pair well together. Brides and grooms have been more open-minded in allowing the chef to suggest what will taste best and be the best culinary experience. Needless to say, we’re big fans of this trend!
Do you have any at-home cooking tips for newlyweds?
If you’re new to cooking in general, start with your favorite foods. You’ll know what flavors you’ll want to achieve and you’ll be familiar with the profile, so it’s a good place to work towards. If you’re new to cooking together, be sure to give each other tasks, extra room, and a lot of grace! Just like life and marriage, you’re both cooking towards the same goal, but you may just get there differently.
Photography | Zoom Theory
Catering | 24 Carrots
Location | The Modern
Planning & Design | Green Apple Event Co.
Floral Design | Lavenders Flowers
Bar | Cocktail Concierge
Paper Goods | Luminous Lines
Tabletop Rentals | Borrowed Blu
Rentals | Circa Rentals
Linens | La Tavola
Ribbons | Tono & Co.
All photos courtesy of Zoom Theory.