A chef is one of the most important parts of any event. And that’s why event planners need to establish a good relationship with them.
We assembled a panel of chefs recently at our annual EventCamp to share advice with event planners on how to best work with chefs to make sure that everything in the kitchen runs smoothly during their events. Our moderator was Nancy Bean of WISE UP EVENTS and the Nantucket Wine & Food Festival , and the panel included David Blessing of Longwood Venues + Destinations, William Kovel of Catalyst Restaurant, and Jeremy Sewall of Row 34, Island Creek Oyster Bar, and Eastern Standard restaurants.
“We work with chefs all the time. We’re sort of self-proclaimed chef groupies. We love to work with them. We realize how impactful their input is on all of the events that we produce,” Bean said.
According to Sewall, communication is key to a good working relationship with chefs.
“It’s really about making everyone kind of feel included in the process. So the chef is going to get upset when something happens that he’s not expecting. He or she feels like decisions are being made around them that affect them and they’re not a part of that. They’re just told what’s happening,” he said.
Blessing agreed and added that having a set of guidelines to guide the chef and other staff on events helps to deter problems.
“Communication is key. We have systems and procedures in place that if followed we’ll have a flawless event. And whether we’re working with a planner or internally, following those guidelines will ensure a happy guest.”
Kovel said that at his restaurant they encourage the staff to keep the guest in mind throughout the event planning and execution to keep challenges in perspective.
“It starts with us at the top, as owners and chefs, working with young chefs and saying ‘It’s all about the guest, it’s not about your sales team, it’s not a battle.’ ” he said.
Get more of the panel’s advice by watching the recording below or visit our EventCamp site to view all of this year’s sessions.
Don’t miss the next EventCamp!
We’ll announce our plans for EventCamp in early 2019. Sign up for email updates to be the first to know the details and get access to earlybird ticket rates.