A2 Art & Brew

We had a wonderful time partnering with Wolverine Brewing and the Ann Arbor Art Center for the A2 Art & Brew Event this past Thursday! Thank you for a fun night, and congratulations to all those who participated.

For our contribution to the event, we made a Spicy BBQ Shrimp, served on a peach cornbread cake, garnished with a spicy pepper relish. The dish was paired with a truly innovative Gulo Gulo India Pale Lager from Wolverine Brewing Co. Utilizing their traditional lagering techniques, Wolverine Brewing was able to turn up the hop-dial and produce an inspired beer that both IPA and Lager fans will love.

The floral, hoppy notes of the I.P.L. matched up wonderfully with the hints of spice in the shrimp and relish. The bite was anchored by our savory peach corn cake, and washed down with a deliciously crisp but full flavored beer.

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We are looking forward to next years event!

What could be more perfect than a night filled with delicious food, innovative beer, and beautiful art?

Not much in our book.

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Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market Wedding

We had the pleasure of catering a Wedding at the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market in mid-August. While the weather leading up to the big day was chilly, the sun came out and gave us PERFECT weather for the al fresco dining. The rustic canopy of the market rooftop gave the perfect covering, while it’s open walls offered 360 views of quirky Kerrytown.

The menu consisted of an assortment of gourmet platters, including antipasto, brie and fresh berries, thinly sliced beef, and a 4 cheese macaroni bake. The desserts were an assortment of small portioned cake shooters, allowing guests to sample multiple cakes. During events like this, it almost doesn’t even seem like work!

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Events Galore

 

 

We’ve had a busy (but fun) Summer, and it’s not even over yet. Rather than go into detail about each of the beautiful Wedding Ceremonies, University Banquets, Company Picnics, Unique Client Tastings,  Anniversaries, and Fun Plate Ups we’ve been a part of over the past few weeks, we decided to just show you what we’ve been up to.

 

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Recipe: Blueberry Cake with Vanilla Yogurt Sauce

In honor of Summer–and the abundance of fresh seasonal Blueberries we have surrounding us–we wanted to pass along one of our favorite desserts that embodies this time of year (and it’s easy too!). Enjoy our Blueberry Cake with Vanilla Yogurt Sauce

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to download this image, click HERE

 

The Root of Flavor: Peppercorns

The Root of Flavor–a series of posts on our blog–we’re going to breakdown some of your favorite flavors, and maybe even give you some new ideas on how to utilize these tasty items.

Today’s The Root of Flavor is about Peppercorns. You’ve seen them in a variety of colors, but how does it’s appearance affect the flavor?

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to download this image, click here

Summer Time = Picnic Time

Rain aside, it’s finally Summertime here in Southeast Michigan! It is just us or does al fresco dining make everything taste better? Patios, backyards, rooftops, public parks…anyplace that allows for outdoor dining should be utilized to it’s fullest during this time.

We’re lucky, not only do we get to participate in our own picnics, but we get to help others host picnics all season long.

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Tea sandwiches at a Croquet party

Past 4th of July Picnic

Past 4th of July Picnic

In honor of this special time of year, we’re featuring the “All-American Summer Picnic” developed for large scale events (250+ guests), perfect for company picnics or community events.

MothersDayTo see more information on this special package, click here. If you have a smaller event you need help with (hey, some of us don’t even know 250 people!) we also have a wide variety of picnic menus, available here,  perfect for events from 10-200+ people.

If you’re planning an outdoor event, don’t forget to check out our tips for preparing for rain on your event day.

Happy (early) 4th of July!

 

What We’ve Been Up To

It’s been a busy start to the Summer, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. We had the privilege of being part of some fun events this past week where we got to showcase our food to the Ann Arbor community.

On the menu: Grilled Zucchini Rolls with marinated flank steak, roasted tomatoes, and olives | Spinach and Feta TrianglesMaize and Blueberry Dessert Shooters | Sea Salt and Espresso Brownies

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On the menu: Strawberry-Lemon Poundcake Muffins | Summer Melon Salad | Falafel Sliders

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The Root of Flavor: Salt

The Root of Flavor–a series of posts on our blog–we’re going to breakdown some of your favorite flavors, and maybe even give you some new ideas on how to utilize these tasty items.

Today’s The Root of Flavor is about Salt. Throughout the years salt has been an important part of human history; flavoring food, acting as currency, preserving meat, medicinal applications, hospitality rules, and more.

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to download a copy of this image, click here

Sweet Endings: Wedding Cake Vs. Dessert Table

Your guests have arrived. They had the honor of witnessing your beautiful union. They’ve enjoyed the delicious food you selected for the reception. They’re ready for something sweet.

Traditionally large multitiered cakes have been served at Weddings, but a new trend has been popping up in recent nuptial celebrations: Desert Tables. Over the years we’ve been able to see it all (or at least most of it), and we have to admit–we love both. Here are reasons for both types of desserts for your big day.

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  • It’s a new and interesting concept, and in some cases your guests won’t have been to a wedding that isn’t featuring a big Wedding Cake
  • A table full of desserts offers more variety, so if you have gluten intolerance or just a picky guest, there is more room for accommodation
  • Some Wedding Cakes can be bland, as the focus is on how it looks and not always on how it tastes.
  • Since you have multiple assets going on your table, there is  opportunity to create a more profound presentation
  • Just because you don’t have the cake doesn’t mean you don’t get the cutting ceremony: sub cup cakes or just a small 1 tired cake, you can still smash the pieces into each others faces
  • While the going price of Wedding Cakes can be roughly $5-$7 per slice, you can make that money stretch further with other types of dessert or candy
  • You can theme the desserts to your wedding (Michigan-based, tropical, vegan, color scheme, etc)
  • Things that can go on a dessert table: Candy (and get fun with it: retro candy, single/dual color candy, all chocolate…), Cupcakes, Dessert Shooters, Flavored Drinks, All Chocolate Theme (cakes, cookies, brownies, dark chocolate tasting, hot chocolate…), Pies, and more!

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  • Wedding Cakes are the more traditional route, offering great (and fun) photo opportunities
  • Cakes are easier to serve in a sit-down style meal as they are uniform
  • Just because you have one dessert doest mean you can’t get creative. There are many ways to dress up a cake on the outside, utilizing colors, graphic elements, and non-traditional decor (flowers, toys)
  • You can save it (frozen) for over a year
  • Cakes are less complicated to orchestrate on the day-of, so that’s one less thing you have to worry about
  • You can select to have different flavors on different tiers, allowing more versatility for your guests’ tastes
  • Another cool way to bring more flavor is to opt for Bride and Groom’s cake (with different flavors for each)

How to Keep Things “Cool” in the Summer

Now that we’ve figured out how to prepare for the rain, how do we ensure our food stays fresh during the upcoming hot Summer months? Here are a few tips to make sure your guests are able to enjoy the delicious food you’ve selected for your event:

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Custom ice tray for Milk and Cookie dessert shooter created by our Administrative Chef, Paul, who is also a professional ice carver

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  • Be aware of your food placement. Take in to account how long your event will be and the movement of the sun. Your pasta salad may be covered in the shade when you put it out, but in an hour it may be directly in the path of the sun.
  • When choosing a cake for your big day, you may want to select fondant rather than buttercream frosting if you’re planning on being outside. Buttercream not only will melt under hot conditions, but it will attract bugs (that will also get stuck if they get too close to the cake).
  • Opt for salads that have an oil or vinaigrette base rather than dairy. Try a vinegar-based Asian Slaw rather than a traditional Creamy Cole Slaw for something that will stay fresh longer in the heat, and it will give your guests something new.

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  • Never underestimate the power of ice on a hot day. When in doubt, always get more than you think you’ll need. You can get creative with your ice offerings, such as incorporating ice carvings (like the one pictured above)

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  • If supplying water bottles, have a marker nearby so guests can personalize theirs. This will cut down the amount of half used bottles that will be strewn about and abandoned throughout the event.
  • Offer your food in smaller containers. Rather than one large container of salad for 100 people, prepare four containers for 25 people that you can easily replenish so they’re not sitting out for hours at a time.