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Gino Spano

 Tags: Catering Trends

Corporate event catering is a busy process. It can be hard to plan an event that has everyone mingling, enjoying the atmosphere, and enjoying the food. You want to impress your guests and avoid the same old, run-of-the-mill corporate event tactics. For innovative ideas, read about five fresh ideas below that will make your event memorable and leave your guests inspired.

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1. Serve What’s in Season

Excite and inspire your guests with seasonal dishes that use the best of what’s fresh. Think fresh Ontario strawberries in a summer salad or sweet corn purchased from a local farm. Sourcing local and seasonal food guarantees you’re serving the freshest food on the table while offering your guests a unique reminder of your entire current region has to offer.

Caterers can source local vendors for the best picks and highlight the produce, grains, and vegetables available now. Offering the best of what’s in season adds a nice touch for attendees and is guaranteed to taste delicious. Don’t forget to let your guests know where you sourced locally, so they may try the products on their own.

2. Presentation is Key

Creative and appetizing food presentation will have your guests’ mouths watering in no time. Consider eye-catching qualities such as coordinating the food by colour, using multi-level tiers, and incorporating vintage displays over cutlery and plates, directing guests where to start. Linens and tableware should all be inviting to create an enjoyable dining atmosphere and highlight the chef’s craft.

We eat with our eyes first, so display the food in a way that’s fun and enticing. Place food on wooden boards instead of standard catering dishes, use mason jars to creatively serve food, and put casual snack food in cocktail glasses for easy distribution. There’s no limit to how you can present the menu, and your caterer will help you find the right vision to guarantee the taste and appearance match.

3. Put a Twist on the Classics

Reinvent favourite dishes in corporate event catering menus by adding a unique spin that’ll be sure to surprise all of your guests. Offer mini gourmet burgers, place cakes in shot glass portions instead of cutting into slices, and give the classic grilled cheese a gourmet twist.

Corporate event catering is often a classic office event, but that doesn’t mean the food has to be, too.

4. Make the Menu Interactive

The food portion of an event is often predictable and routine, forcing people to sit down and eat. Optimize the socializing opportunity with interactive food and DIY stations that break up lines. This will allow for guests more time to chat while choosing their own portion size. Charcuterie boards, pizza stations, taco stands, and chefs rolling sushi gives guests more time to mingle instead of spending most of the night seated.

The great part about this idea is that it works with any part of the meal. Choose to do the entrée and appetizer this way or save it for the dessert portion. Accommodating dietary restrictions and preferences is easy when attendees can pick and choose what they want.

5. Pair the Theme with the Cuisine

Really let the event shine by working the menu around it. Not only is this fun, it helps streamline the planning process. Showcase an “Around the World” theme that spotlights traditional dishes from different cultures. Celebrate the best in Southern Italian fare with a “Rustic Italian” theme. Implement a coastal vibe by serving sushi, fresh fish, and Ocean-inspired drinks.

Complementing unique dishes and snacks to the event’s theme is sure to have everyone ooh-ing and ahh-ing. It also presents a unique opportunity for guests to try foods they may normally never eat.

Catering corporate events today goes beyond the traditional styles of events’ past. Incorporate a few of these ideas when planning your next corporate event to make sure your event is the talk of the office for months to come

Everything You Need to Know About Planning a Corporate Event

Gino Spano

Starting with roots in a kitchen at 14 years old, he worked his way up the ranks and by the young age of 17 was responsible for daily events of 50 to 600 people. Gino continued to use his talents to work in catering, banquet and restaurant kitchens across the GTA. His love for Italian, French and Asian cuisine paired with his wide variety of knowledge brought him success in his new venture at Seventh Heaven in 2001. Over the past 12 years, he has cooked many meals for social events, corporate events and government officials. His love for new challenges brought him into corporate sales where he and the Seventh Heaven team won Best Catered Event for Canadian Linen’s “The Great White North” – Facility Grand Opening in 2009.
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