May 1, 2012 by EmelineBauder
Catering to the Ladies
Hello, my name is Emeline Bauder, the owner of Nibbles by Grandeur Affaires in Tulsa. I was an environmental chemist for 10 years, but my true passion has always been for food preparation and being creative with cakes and flowers. I’m sure that coming from a long line of chefs in my family had a definite influence on me. Even after putting in a full work week as a chemist, I loved planning weddings on my weekends. (Read More…)
February 1, 2012 by Renae Marshall
What’s one gift you could give everyone at your event that’s sure to delight? Consider the sweet idea that’s making a splash at weddings and parties all over Oklahoma – a color coordinated candy buffet with crystal containers and personalized bags!
When our daughter was planning her wedding a couple of years ago, she came up with a unique idea of creating a candy buffet for her reception. With help from friends, my husband, Jack, and I set it all up and were amazed how all the guests loved it, young and old alike. A photographer who had attended the weddings called us later and suggested that we considering creating candy buffets as a business. In August of 2008, Candy Forever was born. We advertised some, joined some networking organizations and participated in shows, but it was the large number of referrals, including a popular wedding coordinator who has helped make the business a success. In addition to weddings, baby showers, class reunions, birthday parties and anniversaries, we’re also in the process of booking proms.
At Candy Forever, we offer three basic types of service: You can simply order party favors with personalized bags filled with your choice of candies. Or, we can set up a candy buffet for 100 guests or less much like the old fashion candy counter with a variety of colorful chocolate and hard candies.
Our third packages is a custom candy buffet especially popular for weddings. The candies are chosen to coordinate with your colors or theme and beautifully displayed in crystal containers with scoops, usually eight or ten containers, but you could have as many as 25. Each guest receives a personalized bag with the bride and groom’s names, wedding date and saying.
Candy Forever displays table-top signs, but some clients choose to add a few flowers or even an ice sculpture. However, one of the major advantages of the candy buffet is that it can take the place of expensive decorations or additional gifts for the guests. It can also take the place of a groom’s cake or dessert table.
When you choose Candy Forever, you can relax knowing your dealing with a trustworthy, family owned business that takes care of everything. You simply provide the table and we provide the set-up, tear-down and clean-up service. We’ll even bag up the remaining candy and take it to your car.
Although we’re headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma, we now service areas throughout Oklahoma, including Oklahoma City. So, no matter where you are, or what type of event your planning, make it a little sweeter, easier and less expensive by contacting Candy Forever today at 918-693-4943 or visit us at www.candyforever.net.
January 1, 2012 by Debbie Leland
Most brides and other event planners assume they need a full-service caterer that delivers all the bells and whistles as well as the food. A traditionally catered event often takes the biggest bite out of your budget. That’s why today’s savvy planners are choosing a wonderful alternative…take-out catering.
Hello, my name is Debbie Leland, the co-owner of The Prairie Gypsies. We began the catering and take-out side of our business back in 1996 working out of a tea room. Business just kept growing so that by 1999, my co-owner, B. J. White and I decided to move to a larger facility with a commercial kitchen.
November 1, 2011 by Kris Abbey
Some people get an adrenalin rush from skydiving out of plane or bungee jumping off a bridge but to me nothing is more thrilling than what I do. Catering labor intensive, high quality food takes creative instinct, seamless timing, and fantastic presentation. I’m Kris Abbey, owner of Abbey Road Catering in Norman and I can’t get enough of my work!
I first got a taste of the hospitality industry one summer when I worked by day as a concierge for the Hyatt and by night waiting tables for banquet dinners. I had been apart of DECA in high school but when I experienced the excitement of pulling off a spectacular event, I was hooked. I decided to get my college degree and find a job in paradise. It was too bad that OU didn’t offer a hospitality program so I graduated with my degree in communications and headed to Belize where I got a job running a restaurant.
When I returned to the U.S. It was a whirlwind of experiences. I got married and took a management position at Legends restaurant where I worked for four years until I gave birth to our first child. I knew I would need a more flexible schedule and left Legends to help a catering business for Hal Smith restaurant Group. From there I went on to managing Harold Powell’s restaurant, Cafe Plaid. When our second child came along, it was time to start out on my own.
Today we have three children and they’ve grown up much like our catering business. Abbey Road Catering is a full service, three time award winning team of culinary artists and experienced event professionals. We bring our inspiration and creativity to every event with carefully designed floral arrangements, table settings and linens, and a customized menu to suite our guests.
Whether your palate prefers rich and sophisticated cuisine or embellished originality and simplicity we serve a labor intensive, high quality product. Highlights from our plated and buffet dinners are the herb crusted tenderloin with amaretto infused sweet potatoes and for the hors d’ orderves that satisfy as a meal, guests rave over our Caribbean Pork Tenderloin with Mango Salsa and unique cheeses. Our mixed media presentations are exciting and alluring while we make sure our food is the perfect temperature from the first guest to the last.
Weddings are some of our favorite occasions but we serve all types of events from grand galas and corporate events to ladies luncheons and intimate birthday parties. We can help you plan and design your event from the venue to the menu. Come by for a tasting at either of our two locations or visit our website at www.abbeyroadcatering.com to view our menu selections.
October 1, 2011 by Bill Bonadio
Who doesn’t like Italian food? The fact is, Italian has become the fare of choice for Americans whether it’s dinner for two or a fabulous catered meal for 200. Of course, there’s just Italian….and then there’s really great Italian!
Hello, my name is Bill Bonadio, the owner and chef of Papa Dio’s Italian Restaurant and Wine Bar. From the time I was eight years old washing dishes, I always wanted to be a chef and own my own restaurant. As I worked my way up in the business, I was very fortunate to have learned the art under some wonderful chefs. I also studied hotel and restaurant management at Oklahoma State University. I opened my first restaurant in 1979 featuring Dio’s original fried pizza. We changed to full Italian fare in 1981 and added the wine bar in 1996 so we could offer upscale, formal dining available in addition to family dining on the other side of the restaurant.
At Papa Dio’s we specialize in full catering services both on and off the premises. Since we’re only open for dinner, you can arrange to rent the entire restaurant for an exceptional buffet or sit-down luncheon for up to 100 guests. If you would prefer that we deliver a catered meal to another venue, we accommodate smaller groups or as many as 500 or more guests. Our full catering service includes everything needed for a professionally presented buffet or sitdown meal, including lovely chafing dishes, fine plates and silverware. Plus, when you let Papa Dio’s cater your function, you can trust us for professional bar service, wait staff and even security. We will also be happy to meet all your additional event needs through our trusted resources, including entertainment, linens and florals.
At Papa Dio’s, we’re famous for our northern Italian and Sicilian style fare. Lasagna is always a wonderful choice for an event and, at Papa Dio’s, you can choose just about any type of lasagna imaginable, including seafood and vegetarian. Our exclusive Trieste Sauce is a tasty combination of three different sauces. We’re just as comfortable preparing American specialties, including roast beef and turkey and you haven’t lived till you’ve tried our fabulous Salmon Mousse or our Crème Brule prepared with Mexican vanilla which can be served flambé style for extra flair.
For your next special event, large or small, count on Papa Dio’s for the finest Italian, American, French delicacies and so much more! Visit our website at www.papadiosokc.com or give us a call at 755-2525. If you’re looking for great food and service, we speak your language!
September 1, 2011 by Carrie Raines
Fabulous desserts and cakes are often the centerpiece of any event and the hot item everyone is looking forward to long before the dinner plates are cleared. There’s a new, fun and fabulous trend that I am convinced is here to stay: gourmet cupcakes with in a variety of flavors, richly topped and garnished so beautifully they’re almost too pretty to eat!
I’m Carrie Russell Raines, owner of Emma J’s Bakery and Cupcake in Norman, Oklahoma. I started baking when I was fifteen years old and continued to do it to put myself through college. I was a cake decorator and bakery manager until I got out of college. My husband got out of the Army and we moved here from Tennessee in April. In just a few months I’m running a bakery that daily sells out and booked for weddings, birthdays, corporate events and parties all over the metro.
The cupcake trend is such an inviting, upscale item because it’s the individual dessert so appealing to the eye and palate. One bite and my customers are in love! These aren’t dry cupcakes with a dollup of icing and boring flavor. My customers rave about how moist our cupcakes are and the difference that careful ingredients can make. Our cakes are made from scratch, never over baked, and our cupcakes are always made with filling. Over 30 varieties are available in my bakery daily. There’s the pina colada with fresh coconut and pineapple, the margharita with cream cheese key lime icing, caramel delight, tripple chocolate fudge, chocolate covered strawberry and so many more!
Wedding and party cakes are a lot of fun and the other side of my business that keeps us busy. I love to get creative with everything I do so I never turn anyone down who wants to customize their cake to their occasion. Six tier, two tier, topsy turvey, castles, teapots, purses or barns, state buildings and crosses…the themes emerge with pizzaz and fun. Because I never turn anyone down, I also find creative ways to meet my clients other needs. I once had a client with an event that was an hour away. Buttercream was an absolute must and because it wouldn’t transport, she’d had six people turn her down. I decided the only thing to do was to go on site and prepare the cake in the venue’s kitchen.
Our cakes start at just $30 and we work with clients to give them the customization they want for their special event. Stop by our bakery and taste the difference!
Emma J’s Bakery and Cupcake
1334 N. Interstate Drive
Norman, OK 73032
by Dejah Quinn
It all goes by so fast. It might seem like only yesterday that our kids were just babies, that their little hands fit inside ours, when their arms couldn’t reach all the way around our necks. Suddenly they grow up, graduate college, get married and have their own precious gifts from heaven. When those days are gone by, we cherish the memories and the moments we captured with the lens.
I’m Dejah Quinn, owner of Dejah Quinn Photography Studio. I began my career by capturing and documenting my own daughter’s life. I enjoyed it so much I wanted to do it for other people. Before she was born, I was pursuing a degree in education when I realized I didn’t want to be a teacher. My husband and I were newly wed and, of course, broke when I realized I wanted to take a major detour. Aaron brought home an old camera and promised me if I really wanted to pursue photography, he would be supportive every step of the way. I changed my classes to photography and after the birth of our daughter, I took it seriously. Today we are a team who love what we do!
Five years ago we moved from Ft. Worth, Texas to central Oklahoma where we opened my full time studio. Being competitive would mean making the business, my art, truly my own. I decided I didn’t want to do the staged “here smile for the camera” routine. It seemed far better to capture the essence of every person’s heart and soul. Especially with family and children, my sessions are socially interactive so the connection between the camera lens and real life are beautifully evident. The unscripted, undone sessions truly captures who they are so I allow the child to lead, the couple to gaze or the family to play.
While I’m not your traditional photographer, I love classic romance for weddings! Using a light hand in my wedding photography gives the bride a timeless work of art. Although I use Photoshop as a great tool to create a flawless finish, I’m a purist at heart. As a professional, I am one step ahead of the bride to capture all those moments that are flying by. So many times my brides will look at the album and smile, telling me that they’d forgotten about a moment I captured on film. They invest so much into a single perfect day that I make sure it’s not forgotten in spite of the unfolding events.
I also make time for photojournalism. I’ve done editorials for baby’s magazines and a nursery magazine. More recently, I was just chosen by the national health and fitness magazine, Shape, to cover a feature in Tulsa. Doing editorial work is a lot of fun and it’s always an honor to be chosen among the state’s top photographers.
Whether you’re planning a wedding or documenting your child’s first milestones to spreading their wings to fly, we hope you will invest our talent in their journey. Browse our portfolio to see how “art of the heart” can truly be captured with intuitive, personal and professional photography.
4706 N. Harrison St.
Shawnee, OK 74804
August 1, 2011 by Joshua Richardson
You hear stories about people pursuing their ambitions from the ground up. That’s something I can relate to because my own career path started when I was ten years old, washing dishes in my grandparent’s restaurant.
I’m Joshua Richardson, Executive Chef for Deep Fork Catering. As a very ambitious kid, I was proud to be making my own money and in a “real” job while my friends had paper routes. It was interesting to watch the inner workings of the restaurant. Later I decided to pursue the culinary arts and apprenticed under two of OKC’s most highly respected chefs, Alian Buthion of La Baguette and Kurt Fleischfresser of Coach House.
After I became Executive Chef at Deep Fork Grill, I wanted to work with multiple types of foods and be challenged even more. Three years ago I moved into their corporate scene as a creative mind behind nine different restaurants including Deep Fork Catering. The owners of Deep Fork Grill and Catering established local favorites like Cafe Nova, The Mantle Steakhouse, The Wedge Pizzerias, and Chica’s Mexican Cafe. We conceptualized The Home Run Sliders in Edmond and The Drunken Fry on Classen Circle. At the Drunken Fry we created 50 sauces to accompany gourmet fries and with 20 different available ketchup sauces at Homerun Sliders, we are the "World’s Greatest Ketchup Bar."
Innovative presentation, immaculate detail execution, and the best quality food are the things that make us distinct. With nine unique restaurants, we pull together a wide range of tastes and ideas that open endless possibilities for our clients. Whether we’re serving four or four thousand, we bring together all the details to make sure everything is true to form. We take everything over the top for a memorable occasion, from grand fare such as beef wellington or lobster tails to casual events serving heavy hors d’oeuvres or sliders. We’re proud supporters of MIO (made in Oklahoma) products. Because we want the freshest foods available, we use the Urban Agrarian to secure as much organic, locally grown foods as possible.
Some our signature favorites are the chicken brochette, breasts and artichoke hearts wrapped in apple wood smoked bacon and served with chipotle aoli. It’s like popcorn, no one can eat just one. People love our cedar plank salmon with a cider dijon glaze. It’s a phenomenal dish and everyone loves the smokiness of the wood.
Our team of experienced chefs sync our talents with the event planners and the customer in mind. We have an incredible event planning team mastered by Amy Roark and Andrew Del Giorno is our catering manager. Whether clients use their own event planner or they’re utilizing our full spectrum services, Deep Fork Catering will bring them a distinct catering experience they will never forget.
Deep Fork Catering
Exec. Chef Joshua Richardson
5418 North Western Ave.
Oklahoma City, OK 73118
July 1, 2011 by Dustin Dunaway
Are you fed up with cookie cutter caterers who fail to give you the attention and quality food you deserve? If you’re looking for a catering company that delivers unconditional service, fabulous food, and “eye popping” presentation, then The Catering Connection OKC is the perfect solution!
I’m Dustin Dunaway and in less than two years since I started we’ve gone from doing five or six events a week to five or six a day! I bring my clients fourteen years experience with the internationally acclaimed, award winning “Puff N Stuff” catering and event production company based in Orlando, Florida. They’ve won and been nominated for too many awards to count and have been featured numerous times in Special Events Magazine, Event Source, and Event Solutions to name a few. Two years ago I decided to move back to my home state and was pleasantly surprised to find a strong economy and a demand for exceptional catering services.
The secret to my success? Our commitment to unconditional service means “yes” to your question before you even ask it. We do it all, from high end hors d’oeuvres, innovative and exotic cuisine to Oklahoma’s signature comfort foods. We offer the finest dishes in island food, Greek, Italian, Mexican, Cajun, or the best BBQ from great quality meat (and vegetables) we smoke ourselves. I recruited the best kitchen staff and chefs including the well known Kevin Schoenhoff and Tony Cancemi, formerly of Chesapeake Boathouse. These chef’s take any curve ball I throw at them and produce amazing results!
No matter what fare your guests prefer, we offer a presentation that captures your envisioned theme. Even something as simple as “Oklahoma Meat and Taters” gets a Hollywood presentation. Using martini cosmo glasses we served this favorite classic parfait style: smoked briscuit atop a horseradish mashed potatoes with a Madeira wine reduction, the other a Jack Daniels sweet potato mash with bacon wrapped tenderloin and a Dijon apple cream sauce. Our presentations are unique with exactly the food you want to serve.
We understand the value of great prices too. After I meet with my client and capture their vision, I suggest foods to compliment their event and their budget. Whether your event is from 10 people at $150 per person, to 1,000 people at $6 per guest we give you the highest possible service and food to make your event perfect!
We also now manage the events and catering for the Central Oklahoma Home Builder Association’s new “Le Chateau Grande,” a state of the art event center located at Britton Road and Broadway Extension in Oklahoma City. We invite you to experience why we’re one of Oklahoma City’s fastest growing catering companies. We are your Catering Connection, delivering OKC excellence one event at a time.
The Catering Connection
3801 S.E. 29th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73115
June 7, 2011 by Stacey Robertson
Americans are in love with themed cakes! With shows like Cake Boss, Cake Diva, and Ace of Cakes, it’s no wonder themed cakes are the rage in the hospitality industry. These pro’s have awakened us to the sweet possibilities when art meets dessert.
I’m Stacey Robertson of Stac’d (stacked) Cakes. I grew up loving dessert and helping my mother decorate cakes when all DIY moms had was butter cream frosting. When her birthday approached last year, I decided she deserved something special. As a fabulous Mary Kay consultant, I knew exactly what to design: the signature Mary Kay pink Cadillac. Everyone loved it and after I began accepting requests from friends, I realized I had a talent for culinary design plus a fun business I could manage while finishing my elementary education degree at UCO.
Everyone kept asking me “how did you do that?” so I started a blog for my “caking” where people who love my work can get a behind the scenes peak at the design process. They also love my prices! Because my overhead expenses are very low and my focus is solely on cakes, my clients can save up to 35% compared to bakery shops and caterers.
I create all-out themed cakes to serve small crowds for a quiet party or for grand events like weddings, corporate events, and reunions. No longer just for kids and brides, I’ve crafted cakes of every shape and design imaginable. My client’s requests are varied. I’ve made a tall corset cake, a skull, a guitar stacked on top of a piano, ladybugs, flowers, billiards, a full campground scene, and even hello kitty to name a few. I work with my clients to deliver a reflection of their taste, ideas, even their heart felt emotion.
Personalized cards and gifts tell those we celebrate how much they mean to us. Let a themed cake top off your next event with all the fun and style you want to invest in your next special occasion.