PHX Personal Chef
Ok - so I am not really sure this allowed... but here goes. I am looking for a personal chef to come into my home and using a combination of my kithcen and supplies along with their own cache of tools and equipment do a plated dinner for about 40. Has anyone used a personal chef for this type of event. I am not sure I really want it "catered".
Any ideas/suggestion are appreciated. And, like I mentioned above sorry if this is an illeagal post.
I'm gonna get completely creamed for this - but I think Hunt is generally on the money about the "general" catering houses. I'd say most are good, some a bit better than good - no one's a standout star. The two personal chefs I suggested earlier I know and think they're both inventive, imaginative - and also highly cognizant of client palate as well. Using a favorite restaurant chef's a great idea for a larger group. And say - Bazel? What did you do and how did it work out?
An observation - for a dinner for 40, you will essentially have the meal "catered." The chef will need a crew to do the prep work and a line-cook, or two.
That said, I've had chef Vincent Guerithault do two similar dinners for a slightly smaller group each time. In one case I did the wine, in the other, he brought the wine. I have also attended several functions, where he and his staff, did dinner for approximately 150.
There are probably others in the Valley, who will do the same thing.
Another catering group that I have used is - get ready for this - St Joseph's Hospital. They have done exquisite eight course meals for 12 - 20 and less elegant, but equally enjoyable meals for 300. In two of these cases, we flew in a chef from New Orleans, but their exec. chef was Randy Johnson's personal chef for some years. [Big Disclaimer: my wife is with St. Joseph's Hospital so you must take what I said with that caveat. However, they can handle about anything, at any level and are actually a "front door" operation, i.e. they accept assignments far removed from the hospital. Don't forget my disclaimer, please!]
OTOH, I like the above suggestion regarding the Vally's culinary schools.
I do not know either of the recommended personal chefs, so I cannot comment, other than to say that they are both probably great. Most general "catering" houses in the Valley have left me a bit cool.
You could call one of the culinary schools in town -- SCI, SCC, The Art Institute, Arizona Culinary -- and tell them what you want. This happens all the time. Your request will be posted in the staff room and someone(who wants to do this) from the staff will call you back and make arrangements.
Disclosure: I taught at one some years ago.
Check at www.elizachef.com - Elizabeth Dickerson was one of the first and is one of the best personal chef in the Valley. Also, Amy Ahresndorf, who has been the chef with Viking Ranges in Chandler (?) She's also been working with the Australian wine store at the Chandler Mall (Down Under Wines) and I KNOW she does in-home events because I covered a "ladies only" pajama party she did a couple of years ago...
Both of these women are excellent at-home chefs. Have fun - and a terrific party.