Tag chef’s table

Stay Classy with our Chef’s Table Corporate Dining Experience

Chef's TableMarketing Intern Erin checking in, here. I’m really looking forward to this Friday, when I’ll get to work my first Chef’s Table event. Though this is mainly an opportunity for me to experience another event type first-hand, I’m intrigued as to how our more formal gatherings work.

First of all, it’s important to note that Chef’s Table isn’t solely a corporate team building event. Rather, we encourage groups of coworkers, clients, family and friends to utilize this event to strengthen bonds. Parties That Cook events are rather ingenious because they cover such a wide variety of corporate and private event needs.

At Parties That Cook, we’re about building community, providing excellent service, and initiating fun interaction. How will this translate in a more formal setting, you say? Let’s see how we differentiate Chef’s Table from Sumptuous Small Plates while maintaining Parties That Cook’s core values!

Upon arrival, attendees grab a name tag and mingle for a bit. Once the guests have settled in with a glass of wine and a bite from our antipasti platters, the lead chef begins a lively cooking demonstration. This is no boring lecture in a room of fidgeting people. Guests are immersed in culinary tips and tricks, and even invited to drop some knowledge on the group, themselves. Bet you didn’t expect Bob from accounting to know how to the difference between a bulb and clove of garlic! Now that everyone’s all warmed up, the chef divides the group into teams to prepare different recipes from the themed, four-course Chef’s Table menu.

Cooking pictureEach delicious seasonal menu distinctly features a particular region of the world, and the exotic flavors that can be found there. Current menus feature recipes reminiscent of Italy, Mexico, and Southeast Asia. I, for one, think it’s impressive to know how to make authentic tortillas rather than grabbing some off supermarket shelves. And after sitting in on yesterday’s staff meeting, I know Chef Tanya is already working on next season’s menus. Don’t mind me as I drool in anticipation.

Back to the event: As everyone cooks, chefs are right there with them to provide all the guidance teams might need. And I’m not talking about taking-over-the-kitchen “help”; think more along the lines of providing insider chopping techniques or genius fix-my-blunder hacks. The experience is YOURS, and our chefs are there to ensure that it’s a great one. How often do you get to interact with a professional chef, anyway?! Too cool.

High Five!

Now that the meal has been prepared, it’s time for my favorite part: Eating. No passing platters for you — all guests are invited to sit down and relax while PTC staff takes care of the rest. Our team buzzes around each table, filling glasses and serving the dishes of each course. Enjoy your masterpiece, reflect on the culinary journey that got you here, and bond with your fellow diners. Seems to me like you can have bake your cake, and eat it too!

Portland Team Inspires Corporate Teamwork with Family Style Dining

Early this month we brought you an event recap from a sunny Seattle corporate cooking party. Now, it’s on to Portland we go. Funny enough, our gal Carolyn experienced and wrote about both of these events — that’s what you get when you’re the “Northwest Manager”! Take it away, Carolyn.

One of the reasons why I love working with Parties That Cook is the variety of culinary experiences we offer. I can trust that, as a chef, my experience at each event will be just as varied as that of our guests.

For the longest time, our Sumptuous Small Plates format was my favorite. Guests not only cook together, but also mix and mingle like at a cocktail party! And who doesn’t love a good cocktail party?? Another favorite of mine has been the intense Kitchen Challenge. This high energy event brings out the competitive edge in our guests, testing their creativity as they come up with their own recipes using our pantry of ingredients.

Recently, a new Family Style twist to our classic Chef’s Table event has caused a shift in my list of favorites. The words “Family Style” evoke nostalgic memories of everyone gathered around the dinner table, enjoying each other’s company. The magic of cooking together continues at the dining table when the platters of food come around. You see one guest holding the platter while a neighbor serves both of their plates. It’s a great display of sharing, teamwork, and complimenting colleagues on a job well done – isn’t that what team bonding is all about?

Up in Portland, a group from Intel recently experienced the magic of our Chef’s Table, Family Style. Intel host, Cari Williams, had told us that her group was going to be in back-to-back corporate meetings, and our cooking event was a natural team building extension. What better way to strengthen connections and unwind than at one of our cooking parties? We knew our Family Style format would be perfect for this group.

The group arrived at one of our favorite venues, In Good Taste, where we had all the cooking stations set up. We greeted guests with a beverage and bites from our antipasti platter. After a brief skills demonstration, the cooking began. Guests commented on how much fun it was, and seemed to really enjoy spending time together. Kari later commented, “It was great team work. The event was successful because the PTC team did a fantastic job setting expectations ahead of time.” Want to know what they cooked? Ready, Set, Drool!

First Course: Risotto-Style Pasta Primavera with Sweet Peas, Leeks and Mint
Main Course: Chicken Cooked Under a Brick with Artichokes, Capers, Shallots and Pecorino
Side: Sauteed Green Beans with Hazelnut Picada
Dessert: Goat Cheesecake with Glazed Seasonal Berries and Almond Crust

The food was exceptional and everyone was so proud of what they had created! We heard lots of “Ooh’s” and “Aahh’s”, “How beautiful”, “This smells so good!”, “Looks delicious!”.

Guests also took home a brand-new PTC apron. According to Cari, “Having the aprons was a hit. We took them back to our team meeting and signed them so each member has an apron with all of our signatures…makes for a nice memento.” A few guests wanted to continue honing their culinary skills at home, so our Small Plates Recipe Deck was the perfect take home for them. What nice souvenirs!

Big thanks to Cari and her Intel team! We loved cooking with you and are so glad you experienced the magic of our Chef’s Table, Family Style. Hope to see you in the kitchen again soon!