Great Googa Mooga, a Family Wedding and Catering the G-8 Summit: Monday Wrap-up!

Beer-braised chicken and potato nachos from All Smoked Up Catering in Danbury, CT. YUM!

Happy Monday, y’all! Even though it’s a full week before Memorial Day, it feels full on like it’s the middle of summertime. I was in the suburbs of Boston this weekend, celebrating my big brother’s wedding, and we had a beautiful, beautiful day. Because it was such a small wedding – there were only 16 of us – it was held at a restaurant in Dedham, MA, and not catered. But the food was great – we had a choice of chicken piccata, beef tenderloin and horseradish and pistachio-encrusted salmon. Since I’m the foodie sister, I made sure to try all three entrees, and yum! All three were delicious, and I especially liked the salmon – pistachio is probably my favorite nut, my favorite bar snack, and pretty much my favorite color, too, so I’m happy to see it’s still a hot ingredient. The horseradish worked well, too, and was a huge hit with my Polish American mother.

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New Products and News from the National Restaurant Association Show

The painter’s palette by Turgla was one of my favorite presentation ideas from the show – it’s hand cut and dishwasher safe!

This year marked my first visit to the National Restaurant Association show, and it was such a tremendous experience! Thousands of booths filled two halls at McCormick Place in Chicago, with new products and old favorites dotting the rows and rows of booths. Whether it was a fashion show from Chef Works, a giant semi truck with a 12,000-pound potato on it or a Chinese riff on a classic Chicago-style hot dog, there was plenty of pizazz to be had on the show floor, and tons of new products for caterers to check out.

I saw tons of great presentations, silverware and settings, and it was hard to pick a favorite of the show, but the painter’s palette from Turgla would be ideal for more intimate settings, allowing you to pair your food with different flavors in an literally artistic and vibrant presentation.

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Mint Juleps or Margaritas: A Weekend of Great Convergence

Fresh margaritas by the batch at Catersource.com.

Well, the Catersource office is nearly entirely cleared out, as most of our staff will be in Chicago this weekend for the National Restaurant Association show. I leave tomorrow morning, and I’ll be in the Catersource booth (#5528) from about 11:30 until 1 – stop by and say hello! I’ll also be at the booth on Monday and Tuesday from 9:30am to 11:00am with our new May/June issues, They just got in yesterday, and they look fantastic!

If you’re not at the show, it’s still a big weekend. Tomorrow is the great convergence of two of my favorite events: the Kentucky Derby and Cinco de Mayo! It’ll be a green-drinking holiday to rival St. Pat’s! Except slightly more classy… 😉

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Pinterest for Caterers: The Next Frontier?

Wedding Dress Cake from Sweet Memories Bakery in Apex, NC. Incorporating elements from the dress is a 2012 trend for wedding cakes, says Sweet Memories Bakery.

If you’ve spent any time on the service, you’ve learned that Pinterest really takes the cake. It’s filled with ideas for caterers, for your home, for your fashion sense, for your life… and it can be a great marketing tool!

In this month’s Catersource, I go through general tips for caterers to use Pinterest, the new social media service that is really clicking exponentially across the globe. With all its photos of minis and cupcakes galore, it’s a huge hit for people who are just looking for inspiration. It’s also a huge resource for people who are planning their weddings, as well as event planners. Because it’s increasingly used by so many potential customers, as well as a lot of casual users, caterers can use it to spread the word about their product. A strong Pinterest presence for your business can result in new customers, increased brand awareness, and improved results in search engines.

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