How did you get started doing this type of work?
I've always been interested in food but never followed it as a career choice until I had spent about 5 years in marketing and got burned out. I needed a change and went to culinary school to follow my passion. It was a wonderful experience and equipped me for starting my own business as a personal chef.
What types of customers have you worked with?
I have recently prepared many multi-course dinner parties for small groups of 2-12 people. Typically, clients will start with an appetizer or two, and then move on to a main dish that's plated with sides. They'll finish up with a beautifully plated dessert. The menu is constructed around their tastes so usually we'll try to highlight ingredients that are favored by the guest of honor in addition to using ingredients that are in season. I'm always creating new dishes for dinner parties, customized for specific clients.
Describe a recent project you are fond of. How long did it take?
I cooked for a group of 15 women who were all renting condos in town for a bachelorette party. The condos had no cooking equipment and the kitchen was teeny tiny without much lighting. I had brought two large containers of equipment with me, most of which was put to good use. I prepared an appetizer, main, two sides, and dessert for the large group in the small kitchen using only the things I had brought. It was definitely a challenge but made me feel like I could take on any challenge!
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
Make sure the chef's style jives with your own. If they like to cook modern plated food with interesting ingredients and you like classic rustic food, it won't be a good match. Most importantly, the chef should have your needs in mind. If they are trying to push you one way and you want to go another direction, find a chef that's willing to be more flexible and deliver the exact experience you are looking for.