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Orinda Chefs

Browse these chefs with great ratings from Thumbtack customers in Orinda.

Chef Pete Coleman
4.9
from 141 reviews
  • 29 years in business
  • 249 hires on Thumbtack
Dalila S.
Verified review

We were looking for catering services for our small and intimate wedding during December 2015. Food was a big part of the event, but we also had a limited budget, so we shopped around to find someone that would fit our needs. Pete understood our menu concept right away and was able to work with our budget. He didn't fuzz about small details that we wanted to incorporate and went above and beyond to make them happen. He even provided ideas on how to improve the overall experience, not just the food. We interviewed lots of chefs and catering companies and we couldn't be happier about working with Pete. Our foodie friends and family members praised the food, the presentation was extraordinary and the service was very professional. Pete also provided support for the drinks, bringing with him a great mixologist that crafted creative drinks for the crowd. Finally, the next morning Pete prepared brunch for guests that spent the night at the venue (and ourselves) and even tho some things did not go as planned for him (the professional oven broke down!), he was able to have everything ready flawlessly by the time we woke up. Thank you Pete for taking care of such important part of our event! We are looking forward to working with you again.

Top Pro
Cazadores Catering
4.9
from 110 reviews
  • 28 years in business
  • 181 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Jenessa L.
Verified review

Great food and great experience. The two chefs working our holiday party couldn't have been kinder or more patient. Everyone loved the food, and the boss told me after they left that she would like to bring them back again next year. Thank you for a lovely experience!

  • 12 years in business
  • 158 hires on Thumbtack
Patrick L.
Verified review

Chef Sat did a spectacular job for my girlfriend's birthday party! I had two previous chefs flake out on me, the first being completely unresponsive, and the second not answering a request for a quote and then going completely over budget. Sat stepped in with only a few days to organize, and was more professional and invested in the event than I could have hoped for. Sat listened carefully as I rambled about which ingredients I was hoping to include on the menu, and provided great feedback about what would be in season, what we would be able to find with good quality, and how we could break from a traditional menu in order to squeeze in as much variety as possible. He patiently revised his menu 4-5 times for me to address every detail I could throw at him - and, remember, this was all with under a week to plan the event. Sat also helped me rent dishware, and was very transparent about what would be needed, and what things would cost - this was a huge time saver. At the party, Sat was charismatic and charming. He thoroughly cleaned the entire kitchen and packaged all our leftovers while we ate. He fielded our questions about his background, cooking techniques, sourcing tools and ingredients. The Bottom line, I would hire Sat again in a heartbeat. Thanks for the wonderful evening!

A Plus Catering
4.3
from 92 reviews
  • 20 years in business
  • 156 hires on Thumbtack
Keira W.
Verified review

Jennine was lovely to work with.

Top Pro
Made With Love
4.9
from 78 reviews
  • 5 years in business
  • 95 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Mel W.
Verified review

Debbie was a pleasure to work with. Not only is she very professional but she is an amazing chef. We ordered the BBQ ribs, BBQ chicken and Polenta cakes for the vegetarians. Everyone commented on good the food was. You have to try the baked beans as well. They were soooo good! When we got there the table cloth was set, the food was in warmers, and she was great about the clean-up as well. I would definitely hire her again for the next party.

Top Pro
Bouquet Catering
5.0
from 73 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 102 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Dana M.
Verified review

I have worked with many chefs in the past and Stephanie stood out as exceptional not only for the wonderful food she made, but also for her easy going nature and ability to accommodate our many additions requests. She truly went above and beyond and our event was a great success due to her hard work. I am looking forward to working with her in the future and I hughkg recommend her.

Top Pro
Kitchenina.com
4.9
from 69 reviews
  • 2 years in business
  • 92 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Mofeda D.
Verified review

I can't speak enough about how great my experience was with Kitchenina. I came across their website while searching for a caterer online for an upcoming holiday party. Aliki was not only very easy to talk to, but also very helpful in offering suggestions on how to make the party and menu better. She is truly invested in all her customers. She works well with all budget sizes (mine was on the low end) and delivers the best quality. She threw in additional items free of charge and was very flexible in what she can provide. Her husband, who is the head chef, is ready to customize any of their menus. We were so impressed that we asked them to cater our daily lunches, which my team loved. Their food is healthy and delicious. The chef personally delivered the food and asked how everything is going, which speaks volumes about their dedication to customer satisfaction. I spoke to my family about Kitchenina and now we will ask them to also cater our family parties! A big thank you to Kitchenina for providing such amazing food and service!

Quiche and Carry
4.6
from 65 reviews
  • 98 hires on Thumbtack
Shamus T.
Verified review

Quiche & Carry (Chef Deborah Moss and her assistants) prepared a tasty feast for my guests. The items were extraordinary! I took a bite of a spring roll to be pleasantly surprised with a flavorful curry marinade on the tofu. The salad and dressing were flavored with mint. The miniature quiches and stuffed mushrooms were especially delicious. There were bite sized fruit tarts, pecan pie, and a gorgeous fruit platter. And so much more! Many of my guests told me that the food was, "Amazing!" Thank you Quiche & Carry for making my event one that I and my guests will never forget.

Passionate Plates
4.8
from 60 reviews
  • 78 hires on Thumbtack
Elizabeth C.
Verified review

I couldn't be happier with my experience with Alisa! If you are looking for a personal chef / group caterer.. look NO further! She was professional, exceptional and an extraordinary chef. Oh.. and extremely flexible..Love you Alisa!

Top Pro
Celebrations by Chet Chase
5.0
from 55 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 76 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Mary R.
Verified review

Having worked with a few different chefs, with varying results, I can enthusiastically recommend Chet Chase! From start to finish, working with him was a pleasure. Prior to my event, Chet proactively responded to my requests, suggesting options, working with my budget and numbers - and adjusting the menu when my numbers changed. During my event, Chet and his assistants were thorough, on-time, organized, adding an item on the fly, and provided a seamless experience. And something I have not seen from other chefs - clean, stocked with their own cleaning supplies, and left the kitchen as clean as it ever was. I will definitely be using Chet Chase for my next event!

  • 13 years in business
  • 57 hires on Thumbtack
Mandy A.
Verified review

Such an absolute joy to work with! He made it such an incredible evening - not just because of the food he so exquisitely whipped up and served, but because of his personality. We loved him and I look forward to many more parties with Chef Graham!

Top Pro
  • 4 years in business
  • 37 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
John G.
Verified review

On December 23, 2015 approximately 40 Earlimart Seniors participated in its annual Christmas Dinner. Chef Albert and his sous chef prepared a delicious and nutricious meal. The seniors were very pleased with the meal as many "mmm's" and "this is gooood" were heard from the people seated at the tables. Chef Albert prepared a very tender roastbeef, so tender it melted in your mouth.He also introduced our seniors to eating kale. Rounding out the meal was a crisp green salad with cranberries and walnuts, mashed potatoes and dessert. The chefs were very gracious with the seniors - talking and mingling with them and even taking pictures. Everyone left with a smile on their face and a delicious meal in their tummy! We are looking forward to our next meal with Chef Albert- who is innovative and still provides a very satisfying meal. Kudos Chef !

Rainbow Chefs
4.7
from 28 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 59 hires on Thumbtack
Emily L.
Verified review

Rainbow Chefs were reliable, professional, and punctual. The entrees were truly impressive-- as good as top SF restaurants we have been to. The desserts and appetizers were also super tasty. The chef was really nice and easy to work with, and the person we spoke with to arrange everything was great as well. The price was reasonable for the services provided. Only reason we are not giving 5 stars is because the first dish, the salad, was super over-salted and pretty lackluster in ingredients. I was definitely worried that the rest of the meal would not be good, but we were pleasantly surprised by the quality of everything else. All in all, I would definitely recommend them.

Top Pro
LL Services
5.0
from 24 reviews
  • 25 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Jim U.
Verified review

Absolutely the best ever food service and presentation. I have hosted over A dozen dinner parties in the last two years with three different chefs. I will only use Lucas going foreward!!

Top Pro
Phiesty Food Catering
4.8
from 23 reviews
  • 9 years in business
  • 17 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Thomas F.
Verified review

Cheri was easy to work with, and super friendly! She made scrambled eggs for a wrestling team of 50, before their last tournament of the year. Thank you Cheri!

Top Pro
PCJames
4.8
from 21 reviews
  • 8 years in business
  • 39 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Nilufar K.
Verified review

We had a wonderful time with Chef James. He was so professional and made our dinner experience so memorable. We asked Chef James to let his creative juices flow and surprise us with his recipe (all we asked was that the meals were seasonal and refreshing). He came back with a luau themed meal including: ceviche, apple cabbage salad with ginger sauce, tomato and chard salad, AMAZING tamales, and much, much more. He also brought his own cookware! Thank you for a fun night, chef!

Chef Auri's Suga Dotz
5.0
from 16 reviews
  • 3 years in business
  • 21 hires on Thumbtack
Alice C.
Verified review

We used chef Auri for my son's birthday cake and she did a fantastic job. She's very responsive and came up with some great suggestions for the cake design. On the day she arrived early. The cake looked amazing and tasted great - my son and his friends were very happy. Thank you!

Top Pro
Mise En Place
5.0
from 16 reviews
  • 7 years in business
  • 10 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Carrie K.
Verified review

I hired Chef Dan for a corporate team dinner for 28 colleagues at a private venue in San Francisco. Dan is an absolute pleasure to work with. He is friendly, responsive, thoughtful, creative and detail oriented. Each step of the planning process went off without a hitch (menu selection, wine pairing advice) On the day/evening of our event, prep and service was smooth, and our meal was beautifully presented and delicious. Our team had an amazing time! I highly recommend Mise En Place & Dan!

Beach Bum Sweets
4.8
from 13 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 16 hires on Thumbtack
Darby S.
Verified review

Gaby was great! I put in an order for a wedding cake for tomorrow because Thumbtack didn't have a birthday cake option, and didn't have same day option, but I clearly stated "need a birthday cake TODAY." (previously set up deal fell through). She came through with flying colors! She did it for a great price and drove to the party and delivered the cake herself, without charging a delivery fee. I tipped her extra for that and you will want to do the same. Annoying that Thumbtack doesn't allow for picture upload on reviews. Click here to see the actual cake Gaby made for my son: http://goo.gl/WX69sa Gaby was super sweet, the cake looked and tasted awesome. I'll order from her again.

Olive Cater
5.0
from 8 reviews
  • 4 years in business
Sheila R.
Verified review

Olive Cater team are simply the best! They catered for me an office party and my parents 40th anniversary. Even though the menus were totally different both events were a success! Arkadi is a talented and creative young chef. His food is beautifully presented and it tastes amazing! I got many compliments on those events and I look forward to having Arkadi and Elinor cater my next event.

Classic Cuisine Catering
4.9
from 7 reviews
  • 20 years in business
  • 4 hires on Thumbtack
Neha C.
Verified review

In contract with Classic Cuisine Catering . Chef Kolnita has been very responsive. She has helped us build a great menu as per our liking for the event within a short time period. We are looking forward to our event this week.

Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

How do you find a good caterer?

Reviews, interviews and menu tastings will help you find the right catering choice for your big day. Start by screening possible wedding caterers based on past reviews. If a caterer you are interested in has a review that concerns you, ask them about it; how they respond will be very telling. Next, ask about their availability for your wedding date.

If the wedding caterer is available on your date, it’s time to talk about menus and prices. Be clear about what your maximum budget is find out what choices this will allow you. Caterers may custom-create a menu for your event, or they may have menu templates within different price ranges that can guide your decision. A clear budget gives the caterer clear parameters within which to work and offer creative suggestions. Schedule a menu tasting to confirm you love your wedding menu. Once you have a menu and date, and have paid a deposit to reserve the caterer’s services, confirm additional details including when the food will be delivered to the site, what kind of service will be provided, how many servers will be onsite and for how long, and who is responsible for setup and cleanup. The more specific your contract, the fewer worries you’ll have on your wedding day. Get more smart hiring tips here.

Do you tip a wedding caterer?

Tipping 15 percent to 20 percent on a $3,000 catering bill can feel daunting — especially in light of all the other costs of throwing a wedding — but tipping your wedding caterer is standard practice. Be sure to ask your caterer about their specific policies. Many catering companies include gratuity as a line item on their bill. If tipping is not automatically included in your total, a good approach is to tip all the people involved the day of the event rather than paying one lump sum to the catering company. For each server and bartender, you can tip $20-$50, depending on how long they were onsite and whether they did exceptional work. You can also tip the chef; experts suggest $50. It’s also a good idea to tip the catering manager, the point-of-contact person who keeps the catering service running smoothly the day of your wedding, ensures all the food looks beautiful and is plentiful, and resolves any mishaps. Industry pros recommend tipping the catering manager $100-$200. If gratuity is not included and you’re tipping individuals, set aside $200-$500 in cash to be safe.

How much does wedding catering cost per person?

Wedding catering costs will always vary based on the number of guests you’re inviting, the menu you want to serve, and the way the food will be served to your guests. As you interview wedding catering companies, you’ll be presented with a cost per person for various menus. On the low end, wedding catering may cost approximately $15-$18 per person. This would include prepared food only, with no setup or service of any kind. The starting price for a simple buffet meal with minimal service typically averages $22 per person. Opting for the same menu with all organic ingredients could raise your costs to about $33 per person. A moderately upscale menu (finer ingredients, more elaborate presentation) could range from $24 to $34 per person. High-end wedding catering cost truly has no limit. Lobster, filet mignon, specialty seafood, organic ingredients — menu choices like these can boost your cost per person up to $150 and more.

How much does it cost to hire a caterer?

Catering prices depend mainly on how fancy you want the food and service to be and how many guests you’ll have. When you’re first looking to hire a caterer for your event, consider how many guests you’ll have and your total food and drink budget. The national average for event catering is $340, but catering prices can range into the thousands depending on your menu, guest count, and service.

Event catering is a broad term that covers everything from fully prepared, ready-to-eat food that the hosts plate and serve themselves to full-service, multicourse meals, including rental of linens, glassware and other items, with service staff organized by the catering company. Usually a caterer will determine cost based on the type of event you’re having, how many guests will attend, the level of service you desire, and what type of menu you’d like to have. For example, if you have a set catering budget, say $1,500, and you plan to have 50 people attend, that means you have $30 per person for food. If you have the same budget with 100 people, you have $15 per person for food. In this way, the number of people you want to attend your event and the level of food you want to serve them determines how much catering will cost.

What should you look for in a caterer?

A delicious meal is a critical element of a successful wedding, with happy guests fondly remembering your fabulous wedding food. The right caterer for you will be:

  • Available: Even the best caterer is no good if they aren’t available on your wedding date. Ask early before you get your heart set on someone.
  • Affordable for you: Find a caterer that you can afford. Having a spending plan ahead of time will mean you won’t overspend on food.
  • A good personality fit: Wedding planning is stressful, so work with someone that you can get along with and communicate with easily.
  • Experienced and recommended: Ensure the company has a proven track record with events of your size and the references to back it up.
  • Transparent about money: Steer clear of shady pricing. Find a caterer who is very clear about costs and is happy to talk you through budgets and pricing options.
  • Transparent about food: Find someone who is clear about where they source their food from and where it is prepared.
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