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We had such a great time in our PhotoBoo

April 4, 2016

We had such a great time in our PhotoBooth with DIWAS a few weeks ago and we want to share the experience with YOU! Come snap a few pics with us at our #BourbonBaconBloom event April 7th at At Sanctuary

ANNOUNCEMENT: Sanctuary At Admiral has b

March 2, 2016

Sanctuary At Admiral has been voted one of Seattle’s Best Most Unique Venues!!!
Thank you all who voted. We are so excited.

Are you coming to see us @OneLoveSeattle

February 19, 2016

Are you coming to see us @OneLoveSeattle on Sunday? We are going to be servings some great food, and there will be a secret take home gift for those who show their smiling facing!!
It’s not too late to registration for FREE!
#FoodzCatering #EventProfs #Love #Wedding

I Love The Fremont Foundry

November 11, 2015

Fremont Foundry Foodz Catering

The Fremont Foundry is one of my new favorite event venues in Seattle. Located just west off Aurora Avenue in the fun urban-suburban Fremont area, it evokes a modern industrial atmosphere that is eclectic, fun and stylish.

I got my first look at the Fremont Foundry when I attended an ISES (International Special Events Society) open house there. Following a great conversation with Dani, the venue manager, I was given a little tour, and fell completely in love.

Fremont Foundry venue space

The building was once a working fine arts foundry. Its artists were the ones that made Fremont’s Lenin statue, and Capitol Hill’s Jimmy Hendrix sculpture. Now the cement facility has been retrofitted and spiced up with modern amenities to serve as an events venue, completely with a large outdoor deck that’s perfect for weddings with a view.

Fremont Foundry venue deck view

After entering the building you turn right into the atrium. Its 20 foot ceilings with exposed beams and a great skylight allows natural light to pour into the space, making it seem expansive yet warm and inviting.

Fremoht Foundry event catering glenmorangie
Glenmorangie event held at Fremont Foundry and catered by Foodz Catering

Hardwood floors continue into the old art studio, which features a glass garage door that can be opened during events to allow guests to enjoy the outside. It also enables caterers better access for bringing their tasty treats into the fantastic modern kitchen—which is a joy to work in, by the way!

Fremont Foundry atrium-studio

After the ISES event, I went back to the foundry and met up with Dani again. I told her how much I loved the overall space with its stunning atrium, and how the stacked ovens in the kitchen made me giddy. Without missing a beat Dani looked back and me and said “We love you too and would love to add you to our preferred caterers list…” And that was the beginning of our beautiful relationship.

Foodz Catering Chef Laraine

Since then, Foodz Catering has done a corporate launch party for Glenmorangie in September, then in October we were a part of the Northlake Wedding and Events Tour, where we got to really show off some Foodz flare.

Fremont Foundry salad-magnetic buffet

We debuted our new floating buffets, our salad wall, and our vertical magnetic buffet. We also brought along some of our old favorites, like the cocktail wall, and the anti-griddle.

Foodz Catering suspended_tables_sliders

The Glenmorangie event and the Northlake Wedding and Events Tour are only the start of what we see as a blooming relationship with the Fremont Foundry. We have already booked several weddings, parties, and corporate events there for the coming year. And, let me be the first to say, we are SO excited.

Fremont Foundry chocolate bites
Hors d’oeuvres from the Northlake Wedding Tour

The majority of these photos are used with permission from, and gratitude to, Alante Photography.

Top Catering Trends and Food Fads of 2015

April 21, 2015

Shelby at ISES 2015
Photo by Mike Nakamura Photography: website | facebook

Recently I had the honor of presenting to the members of ISES (International Special Events Society) about the top catering trends and food fads of 2015. Joining me was Chef Jonathan Zimmer of Lisa Dupar Catering. Below is an overview of our presentation:

What is a trend?

It’s a popular item in our culture that is widely known, accepted and that people are excited about.

What’s the difference between a trend and a fad? A trend lasts about 10 years, whereas a fad is usually only popular for a couple years. But fads are like “seeds” in a garden… those that take root and survive become trends.

And a trend, if it lasts longer than 10 years, eventually becomes a classic—something that ends up lasting forever.

Where do trends come from?

These days social media (especially platforms targeted to “foodies”) plays a huge influence. Photos of delectable food (often with accompanying recipes) posted on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter, and smart phone apps like FoodSpotting, FoodGawker and TasteSpotting are some of the biggest drivers of both fads and trends today.

Fanning the social flames are the literally hundreds of thousands of food blogs (covering just about every food ethnicity, dietary restriction, and eating preference), restaurant reviewers from local media like Seattle Times, Seattle Met and Seattle Magazine, not to mention recipe apps, countless food TV shows, recipe websites like Epicurious and, and food magazines (each with their associated website) including Saveur, Bon Appetit, and Gourmet.

So what are the resulting catering fads and trends this year?

What’s hot in catering for 2015


Biscuits combined

Sliders Cider combined
Sliders with Microbrews and/or Cider

Ethnic Rice
Ethnic Rice

  • Sushi Martini
  • Risotto
  • Fried Rice or Asian Rice
  • Indian Rice (biryani and curries)
  • Paella
  • Black Rice
  • Red Rice

Upscale Comfort
Upscale Comfort Food

  • Gourmet Tater Tots
  • Gourmet Mac n’ Cheese

Continuing Trends in Catering

Sustainable combined

  • Restaurant gardens / growing our own food / roof top gardens: this is huge and still on the rise
  • Seafood accountability: meeting today’s needs without compromising the future

Local food combined

  • Tell the story of the food and where it came from
  • Embrace and utilize your local community

Farm to Table Wedding
Farm to Table Menus

  • A style of cooking
  • A menu driven by seasonal food – like Swiss Chard, Kale and Root Vegetables in the Winter

Family Style Catered dinner Seattle Foodz
Family style

Catering Chef Bar Action Station CIY Food Seattle
Action stations featuring…

  • Small entrees
  • Designed by the guests “my way”
  • Personal choice

Seattle Caterer Small Plates
Small portions/plates featuring

  • Mini “food martinis”
  • Demitasse cups
  • Shot glasses
  • Asian soup spoons

Gluten free caterer seattle
Dietary Restrictions / Gluten-Free / Lactose free

  • So many ways to get creative!
  • Non-wheat flour: peanut, millet, barley
  • Ancient grains: kamut, spelt, amaranth
  • Dairy alternatives: almond milk, cashew milk, rice milk, coconut milk

Vegetarian caterer seattle
Vegetarian – Flexitarian Menus

  • Mindfully choosing to embrace less protein and more vegetables
  • Dedication to wellness, and a cleaner, fresher “quality of life”
  • Kale and brussel sprouts

Whiskey desserts
Whiskey and Bourbon
It’s everywhere… from cocktails to desserts!

Molecular cooking catering seattle
Molecular Gastronomy

  • Sous-vide
  • Anti-griddle (we’re having fun with ours!)
  • Liquid nitrogen freezing
  • Smoking

Pickled vegetables sauer kraut catering
Pickled and Fermented foods

Macarons caterer seattle dessert

Possible upcoming catering trends…

  • Beets
  • Lamb as the next great protein of choice
  • Octopus
  • Sake
  • Ethnic Cuisines
    • Korean
    • Soul
    • Creole
    • Peruvian

Fads that have gone by the wayside…

  • Green Tea infusions and Tea Cocktails
  • Ice cubes infused with herbs, fruits, smoke
  • Ice cream sandwiches
  • Dessert pizzas
  • Nutella, fruit
  • Cronuts

Vendor Spotlight: The Flower Lab in West Seattle

April 14, 2015

Recently I had the pleasure of lunching with Wendy Damoth here at our restaurant, Zinnia Bistro. Wendy is the owner of The Flower Lab, a delightful floral shop located in the Admiral District of West Seattle… just a stone’s throw away from our venue, Sanctuary at Admiral.


The Flower Lab West Seattle_0089

Wendy purchased the shop in 2011, when the owner, Linda Harader, decided to retire. “I was an employee for many years and really didn’t want to change jobs… so I bought the shop.” She then waited about a year before changing its name to The Flower Lab, “to let people get used to the change in ownership.”

The Flower Lab West Seattle_0039What does The Flower Lab have to offer?

We do all types of events, from Corporate Meetings to Holiday Parties, and every occasion including Births, Weddings, Birthdays, Anniversaries, and the passing of a loved one. We feel it’s our calling to express the emotion of the occasion—whether great joy or deep sorrow—through flowers… and work diligently to make the vision of our clients come true.

What inspires you?

“Weird things,” says Wendy with a laugh. “I love seeing the potential in things other people have discarded, like beautiful Hazelnut branches someone has cut down… I can make fantastic décor with Hazelnut branches.”

“I also am inspired by my staff. They are artists. I am so impressed with what they can do. Katie can do chalkboard art, Tahmina can take a thought and turn it into an amazing event prop (e.g., the mountains and elephants she’s done in the past for Foodz Catering), using a variety of creative and recycled products.”

The Flower Lab West Seattle_0088What do you see in floral trends for 2015?

It’s exciting, people are spending a bit more and less do-it-yourself brides are coming into the shop. As far as design, we are still seeing the natural look with moss and branches.

What is your favorite type of client or event?

I love events with a cool but challenging theme. I love a client that can explain their vision and then allows us to create from that point within the budget—someone with the trust to tell us the look they want and the colors and then let us do what we do best.

What’s your business philosophy?

Finding creative, beautiful ways to serve my community… I love being involved in my neighborhood!

The Flower Lab

2600 California Avenue SW
Seattle, Washington
(206) 935-2587

Chef’s New Toy… the Anti-Griddle!

October 30, 2014

I have wanted an Anti-Griddle for about 2 or 3 years now. I think they are amazing, weird and fun! I just needed to convince a client to have one during their event in order to justify buying one. Finally after a client showed some interest, we decided to take the plunge… and we haven’t looked back since.

Shelby Anti Griddle-5

What is an Anti-Griddle?

Basically it’s an electric machine with a flat surface that freezes on contact. I describe it this way: “You know how a griddle heats up a flat surface on which you can cook pancakes? The Anti-Griddle is just the opposite: it ‘cooks’ by freezing on contact.”

JethroFreezing = Cooking? Yes, I know it sounds weird but when you change the molecular structure of an item, that is the essential definition of ‘cooking.’ It’s a whole new world called Molecular Gastronomy and I am so excited! Molecular Gastronomy is like a new playground for chefs—the practical applications of which are still yet to be fully discovered. Its all pretty fascinating however.

I was lucky enough recently to meet Jethro from Jet City Gastro Physics (pictured at right) who came over to help us work on some fun things. It was like science class only yummier. We spent an entire afternoon playing with all sorts of new techniques. When I told him about my fascination with the Anti-Griddle, he and I made a “poor mans’ anti-griddle” using dry ice. If you’d like to give it a try too, check out this “how to” article on his blog.

The best practical use of an Anti-Griddle is sweet applications. Says Jethro, “if that requires eating more chocolate, strawberries and honey, well then, call me a research scientist.” Here at Foodz Catering, we’ve been having all sorts of fun with frozen lollipops… including Pumpkin Agave Lollipops, and Honey Lollipops with Cinnamon at a couple of our recent events. Curious to try? It’s easy…


Frozen Lollipops on an Anti-Griddle

Start by using a custard base (Crème Anglaise) and flavor it to your preferences (or in our case, to meet the theme of the event). Just imagine… Mocha Lollipops, Vanilla Chai Tea Lollipops, or get a little more creative using a sugar syrup base for Strawberry Daiquiri Lollipops or Margarita Lollipops. You could incorporate Greek Yogurt, you could add ‘mix ins’ like mini chocolate chips or crushed peppermint. With so much room to explore, it’s pretty easy to match the season or the theme of any event.

Savory Hors D’Oeuvres Using the Anti-Griddle

Last week however, we pulled out all the stops at the Northwest Event Show with a savory application—an hors d’oeuvre I dreamed up ages ago and finally had an opportunity to try.


Behold, Frozen Gorgonzola Mousse topping a warm Fig Compote Crostini! Hot, cold, crunchy and sweet—all in one bite. It was fun and a bit out there for sure… and the guests couldn’t stop swooning. While most events don’t call for something that innovative (i.e., crazy), it certainly worked in that setting.

As you can see, the list of possibilities using the Anti-Griddle is endless. Let me know if you have an idea—I love nothing more than being inspired by my client’s needs and visions of what they want for their events!