The 51st Annual “An Evening with Star Chefs” for the benefit of Rosemary Children’s Services was held on June 21 in the front of Pasadena City Hall.
Rosemary Children’s Services in a non-profit organization dedicated to helping abused, abandoned and/or neglected children similar to a nanny agency.
Founded in 1963 by Julia Childs, “An Evening with Star Chefs” is Pasadena’s “oldest, largest, and most prestigious culinary benefit” according to the invitation letter by Rosemary Children’s Services.
The Chefs of Castle Catering participated as part of this annual fundraiser. There were 300+ guests in attendance in front of Pasadena City Hall. The Chefs prepared three items: 1. Appetizer: Stuffed mushrooms 2. Entrée: Carnitas 3: Dessert: Bread pudding
You still remember that last time you’ve been at a wedding party.
Good food, friendly waiters, frequent replacements when a certain dish or pastry was too popular to last, water and drinks served to you as soon as you approached the table.
A good catering service is like that.
I remember this family wedding party I’ve been at in 2004 with a certain pleasure. Aside from the setting — a beautiful garden in front of the restaurant! — the food was delicious, it matched everybody’s tastes and there was enough choice for the vegetarian and the allergic not to feel left out.
They didn’t cheat us — the food was great and nobody felt sick after the buffet.
So, what you should look for in a catering company?
Well, aside from reading the reviews and hearing from people who have experienced their services before, meet with the company representatives and make sure the catering service has the following 8 quality points before you make your choice.
1. Availability to furnish menu samples for tasting
A good and honest catering company will let you taste the food before you plan it all out to make sure it is what you’re looking for.
If the company doesn’t allow you to taste their menus, something’s wrong and you better get suspicious of the quality of their food and cuisine.
A good caterer has nothing to hide about their food. Make a web search for negative reviews if you’re in doubt.
2. Prompt, on-time service
The party for your special event is starting soon — why isn’t the catering here yet?
A catering company is always prompt and on-time with their delivery service, so if they’re late and they still won’t call you and give you a reason for the delay, this is a sign the company isn’t serious.
Make sure to be clear about this matter as soon as you place an order with a catering company.
3. Food quality and conservation
There’s no need to highlight how important it is for the food to be fresh and come from quality sources, preferibly organic and naturally grown.
Conservation is also a decisive factor in the quality of the food. Good food gone bad because of a bad conservation practices is not only dangerous to your guests’ health, but it can also lead the catering company’s business to immediate death, so a conscientious company will take serious care of food conservation.
You should be able to asses this 3rd quality point when you taste the sample menu. Make sure to give the caterer detailed feedback on the quality, especially if you feel something’s might be wrong.
4. Friendly yet efficient staff
When the catering company doesn’t just supply food, but even service staff (waiters, attendants), you know this is a sign of prestige. The staff should be friendly and personable while attending to your guests.
If you have a lot of kids at the party, ask for a kid-friendly menu and staff with kid entertaining skills. A good catering company has staff that knows how to entertain kils and make your event interesting for them, too.
5. Clarity on the transports
I f you agreed on certain delivery times but the catering company is late, they should provide enough reason for you to wait.
Accidents happen, there might be a roadblock or another urgent matter coming up to delay the caterer, but if they don’t pick up the phone to let you know, your trust will definitely drop right there.
Ask the company for clear procedures in case of transport delays and how long they normally take to deliver.
6. Reliability and honesty
Serious businesses are always honest and reliable, and this is even more important for catering companies, especially about the replacement of bad or corrupted food and delivery times (see previous points for details).
There’s no point in hiring a catering company if they have a history of unreliability and dishonest behavior to their clients. These two factors are perhaps the most important in the list, so make sure you look for them when you read client testimonials and reviews.
Use Yelp.com to find out.
7. Communication and transparency
Your catering company will call you if they have a shortage of a certain food, couldn’t get in touch with one of the suppliers or the delivery has to be delayed for some reason. Communication is essential. If the company doesn’t call you and the service disappoints you, that’s a catering service not to use a second time.
Also, they should be transparent about their procedures and how they handle food. This is especially important if there’s a history of allergies in your family, so don’t hire the catering company if they seem to be sleazy or if there’s a risk they will use ingredients one of your guests can’t tolerate.
8. Good quality/price ratio
Finally, the quality of the service and the food should go hand in hand with a fair price. Low quality food at a stellar price is a no-no.
Don’t buy into the “prestige” talk the company may fill your head with — the real prestige is in honesty and reliability, not in names. If the food isn’t good and the service is scarce and uncommunicative, this isn’t the company you want to hire.
What other quality factors did you observe last time you hired a catering company for an event?
Again this year I am organizing a special Valentines Dinner for some very Special People. Forty to forty-five Soldiers and their spouses will enjoy an intimate dinner provided by Castle Catering and it’s Restaurant Partners at The Castle Green and The Romanesque Room.
I want to give you an opportunity again this year to express your gratitude directly to one of our Heroes by delivering “your” message that you are proud of them and thank them in the form of a Valentines Day card.
I am not only asking you to participate, but if you are comfortable doing so, help us get the word out by forwarding this email to your contact lists. As I ask this, I do not know if this request violates any kind of privacy issues for you….if it does, then don’t worry about forwarding. We are just trying to get as many Valentines Day Cards with a “message of thanks” as possible.
Here is what I am asking you to do if you are so inclined…
1) Send a Valentines Card with a message of Thanks to:
“A Soldier and Spouse”
C/O Castle Catering Suite 102
50 E. Green St.
Pasadena, CA. 91105
2) Certainly NOT required….but if you would like to enclose a check for $5, $10 or $20….or whatever you would like, made payable to “The Wounded Warriors Project” the soldiers will see them and we will forward them all to the Wounded Warriors Project.
3) Last, if you are so inclined…..forward this message to some of your contacts and give them the opportunity to also send a Valentines Day Card with a “Thank You” message.
That is it…..I hope you will participate.
Thank you so very much.
Owner, Castle Catering
February 13th 2014, Castle Catering is joining with Stonefire Grill Restaurants to produce a wonderful Valentines experience for post deployment Veterans and their spouses.
Often after a deployment some Veterans face challenges re-establishing family relations. Castle Catering, Stonefire Grill and other selected restaurants have come together to help with this transition by highlighting the day meant for special relationships…Valentines Day.
Here is how you can participate in this wonderful event:
We are asking all who read this to send a “Valentine’s Day Thank You card” to a Soldier and Spouse to be opened by one of our participating Soldiers the night of this event. You can thank one of these Heroes personally through such a card.
If you choose to help, we are asking two things…neither of which is required, but if the spirit moves you, feel free to participate.
1) Forward this request to your contacts to give them the option to participate and let’s see how many survival kits and cards we can have our veterans open the night of this event.
2) If you wish, include a check for $10 or $20 or any amount made payable to “The Wounded Warriors Project”.
The donations to WWP is certainly not required so don’t feel obligated. The card and you forwarding this info to your contacts is the primary effort.
Last year with only 10 days notice we received several hundred cards and raised $3,000 for the Wounded Warriors Project. We would love to enhance these results this year and have our participating Veterans hear and read Thank You cards from as many supporters as possible.
Send cards to this address:
A Soldier and Spouse
c/o Castle Catering
50 E. Green St. Suite 105
Pasadena, CAlif. 91105
Thank you for your interest and support for our Special Valentines Day Event.
Plan your leave from work
Apply for leave work as much in advance as possible. Complete all pending tasks and divide the workload between cooperative co – worker. ìThis way you can get up to speed real quick when you return from your blessed out honeymoon.
Delegate small wedding day tasks
Delegate duties in advance; get a couple of close friends to be by your side during the ceremony to calm your nerves and handle the gifts, some relatives (in rotation) to greet guests at the entrance, someone with a list of all vendor contact information.
Have a chat with your photographer
Decide the theme you want for the marriage pictures and give the photographer a list of moments you want captured.
Put your best friend in charge
On your big wedding day, The last thing you want to tackle is calls from people asking for directions to the venue or someone who wants to know what time the wedding start. Hand over your mobile phone to your best friend and let her field all calls. Also give her a small bag of just in case items; lip gloss, tissues (tones of them), deodorant, mint, an extra pair of (older, more comfy) sandals and a list of your vendors phone numbers.
Pack your accessories and wedding night bag
Pack a bag with all the accessories you will require to get dressed on the wedding day. This includes jewellery, makeup, hairpins, safety pins, undergarments. Leave this bag next to your wedding dress along with your bag of just in case items. Also, pack a small bag to carry with you to the hotel for the wedding night. This bag should have everything you will need. Besides lingerie, make sure to pack a change of clothes for the next morning, your cosmetics pouch and a midnight snack (since no one seems to eat at their own wedding!)
Stop worrying 24 hours before the ceremony
It does not matter if the flowers on the stage decoration are different from the ones you chose, or the caterer is running late ñ your job as event planner stops the day before the wedding. After that, you need to hand over your duties to others. Focus on the here and now, on your beautiful wedding and make sure that every happy moment I engrained in your memory forever.
Make a DVD of the days leading up to the wedding
What I am sure I will continue to find truly endearing and entertaining in the years to come is the DVD of my wedding preparation from the strange practices to the makeup trails to some heartfelt moments with my family. Maybe you can include messages from your close friends and family as well.
Write out Thank you notes
A lot of people have worked tirelessly, spent lots of money and treated you like a princess in the weeks leading up to your big day. Make some time to write personalized cards for all of them and give it to each one before the wedding ceremonies begin.
Look And Feel Your Best
Oodles of pampering
This is perhaps one of the most essential and enjoyable parts of your pre-wedding routine. Book appointments at least 10 days in advance for your pre-wedding beauty regimen, preferably at a spa you frequent. Make sure to include a stress relieving massage to soothe those nerves.
Break in your high heels
Have a brand new pair (or three) for the various wedding functions? Break into them a couple of weeks in advance so youíre not stuck with nasty shoe bities.
Get lots of sleep the night before
No matter what beauty regiment you go through in the days before your wedding, unless you are well rested on the night before the big day, you will neither look nor feel your best. The last thing you need is a headache putting a damper on your mood. So the evening before your wedding should be a quite one spend quality time with your family, eat a healthy meal and get at least eight hour of sound sleep. Eat something and use the washroom before the ceremony. You have got a long day ahead of you. Grab a healthy snack before you put on your makeup and use the washroom right before you head out to the mandapî
Hug your BFFs
Have a moment with your closest friends. This is a very emotional moment for your girlfriends. Grab them in a group hug and let them know you love them. A moment with just you and the girls will help calm your nerves.
Focus on your husband-to-be
If, in spite of your best efforts, things get too chaotic, try this trick. Every bride will have a moment of nerves, no matter how perfect everything around her is. Itís human nature. When this happened turned complete focus on my handsome fiancÈ and on the beautiful life we were about to embark upon together. My mind instantly quietened down and I had a lovely smile on my face that made me look even more fabulous in the pictures. Maybe you could even give his friend a note to slip to your fiance right before the ceremony. This could pep things up a bit for the two of you and help ease the stress too!
There are many interesting facts about weddings that many people are unaware of. There are old traditions and new traditions for brides to be. Something old represents a community link between the bride and her family. Just because her maiden name will soon be changing does not mean she will lose her identity and family history. A vintage garter, your grandmas veil, a locket with a family portrait, old pictures of the bride and groom, or a vintage family brooch are all examples of old traditions.
Something new represents the future of the new bride and groom. It represents new beginnings and living together forever happily married. Something new can be a weeding dress, new makeup, new shoes, your cousins favorite lipstick, the earrings your mother wore on her wedding, your mothers pears, or your grandparents bible.
Unfortunately all this sounds nice, but costs approximately $27,021 to have a decent wedding. There are many costs that go into account and the number of guests also plays a major role. Annually, there are 2.5 million weddings with a total spend over 70 billion dollars. Catering costs are relatively inexpensive, but the venue is pricy. Make sure you pick out a venue ahead of time as they tend to fill up quickly especially in the summer time. Below is a nice infogrphic summarizing everything.
Click To Embed
The big day has arrived. You’ve scanned the to-do list a thousand times over, and all the pertinent details have been proudly checked off. Nonetheless, you can’t shake the feeling that you’re forgetting something. Something simple, yet sacred…something along the lines of…old and new…and borrowed and blue! The Eureka! moment finally strikes. You rustle up some of nan-nan’s pearls, slip on a new slip, borrow mom’s bangles and paint the toenails a glossy, baby blue. Now you’re finally ready. Let the ceremony begin!
Even in the year 2013, bethroned women alike continue to preserve this oldie-but-goodie wedding tradition. Yet the question of why remains a mystery to most, so here’s to debunking tradition!
The phrase is an excerpt from an old English rhyme, often abbreviated to the “4 Somethings,” despite the original version that recites a mostly-discarded final line: “Something olde/Something new/Something borrowed/Something blue/And a silver sixpence in her shoe.”
“Something Old” represents the continual bond that will remain between the bride and her family. In light of the bride-to-be’s pending change of surname, “Something Old” aims to preserves her maiden identity – hence the incorporation of a traditional family heirloom on a woman’s wedding day.
“Something New” symbolizes the new union created between bride and groom. “Something New” denotes the new beginning/new course of life as husband and wife.
“Something Borrowed” signifies the everlasting support that friends and family will provide to the new couple. This phrase loosely represents the acquired (“borrowed”) support of loved ones during the new chapter of spousal commitment.
Though we generally associate ‘white’ as the clean-slate color, “Something Blue” is symbolic of purity, loyalty, faithfulness, interminable love and fidelity in the new marriage.
The “sixpence in your shoe” is a wish for good fortune and prosperity throughout the marriage, but it is mainly a British idiom. Hmm…what could substitute as the American equivalent!?
Despite what your crazy aunt Shirley warned you against over her third G&T, a black cloud will not be cast over your years of wedded bliss if you opt to stray from convention (though good luck charms certainly can’t hurt!). The point is not to fret over these items — they are meant to be tokens of tradition, not a mean ole’ marriage hex!
“Something Old” Examples
locket with family pictures
vintage family brooch
your grandmother’s wedding veil
early, dating photos of the engaged couple
“Something New” Examples
your new wedding gown
brand new makeup
the perfect new shoes
freshly picked flowers
the key to your new house
your new initials monogrammed on a necklace/handkerchief
“Something Borrowed” Examples
- special family recipe
- sister’s wedding shoes
- your mother’s wedding jewelery
- a cousin’s favorite lipstick
- your grandparents’ Bible for the ceremony
- your mother’s pearls
“Something Blue” Examples
- blue flowers
- blue nail polish
- blue shoes
- blue garter
- blue stitching
- blue jewelry
…or you’re really into the idea, your bridal party can all sport “blue!”
Wedding Bells, Whistles and Statistics
A recent, nationwide survey showed that the average cost of a wedding (excluding a honeymoon) is $27,021! Each year in the US, there are approximately 2.5 million weddings and more than $70 billion worth of wedding expenditures.
The following data is a breakdown of the national average amount spent by brides (per individual wedding vendor):
- Reception Venue: $12,116
- Engagement Ring: $5,130
- Reception Band: $3,122
- Photographer: $2,299
- Ceremony Site: $1,599
- Wedding Gown: $1,121
- Florist/Decor: $1,894
- Videographer: $1,486
- Wedding Planner: $1,753
- Rehearsal Dinner: $1,078
- Reception DJ: $929
- Transportation: $669
- Ceremony Musicians: $536
- Wedding Cake: $535
- Invitations: $331
- Favors: $217
- Catering (cost per head): $61
This blog post has been presented to you by Castle Catering, the premiere catering option for all your wedding, food service needs! If you live within the San Valley Gabriel area and are mulling the dining options for your big day, visit http://castlecatering.net to ensure that your palatable menu is as memorable as your ceremony!
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