Q: What is your favourite thing about working in the catering industry? What about the most challenging?
The best thing about catering is that no event is the same. You see a lot of different locations and people – you have to adapt to all these in a matter of seconds as rarely everything goes as planned. This also makes it so challenging, since you have to be able to improvise. Someone has forgotten the glasses? The tables are smaller than planned? The guests arrive earlier? You have to figure out things on the fly, keep your cool and make quick improvising choices.
Q: What is your company food philosophy?
Our philosphy is #realfood #nobullshit. We even have the nobullshit code of honour which was established at the founding of the company. In short, it is about respect and full transparency. We do not hide anything and at the same time every single employee in the company gets taught in detail what exactly we sell, where we get our products from, what is inside etc. At the same time, it is essential for us to treat our food with respect. We think very carefully about where we get our ingredients from – in regard to taste, impact on the environment and, of course, related costs etc. We try to balance out a fair price and all the good characteristics like convenience and speed from fast food, with a very carefully crafted menu, where almost everything is made from scratch with our own recipes, so we know what’s inside, and with our own choice of suppliers. Especially for all animal products (except for cheese) we only source from a very local (less than 100km) butcher and only organic meat.
But the respect does not only go to food – it is about respect for animals, people, employees, suppliers, our planet – our business should improve the situation of everything that it touches. This is very important to us.
Q: What are the newest food trends you are seeing in catering in Austria?
Since we are not purely a catering company, this is a tough question to answer, but with our second company Herd Open Kitchen – which the first co-working kitchen for all kinds of food companies with a production space of 700m is² – we also cater in a very new way. We act as the main contact for the customer, but the food comes from all kinds of start-ups working in our kitchen. The customers love the fact that they have a choice of so many different local companies specialized in a very small menu. They are very good at cooking – what, of course, naturally raises the quality of most foods and gives during the event a local touch to the guests as they often can talk to the founders during the catering and see what’s happening food business wise in their city, while knowing that with eating here, they also support start-ups and young entrepreneurs.
Q: If you had one weekend to travel anywhere, which city would you dine in?
I am very split between LA, as a lot of great fast food concepts that I have been following for years are there, and South Korea, for I simply love Korean food – kimchi!!!