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Angela

NEW VENUE ALERT: River Bottoms Ranch

By | Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Modern Wedding Style, Hot Tips for Cool Brides, Sharing the Love -Vendor and Client Relationships, Vendor Love!, Venues We Love, Wedding Trends

We are spoiled here in Utah because we are literally surrounded by natural beauty!  With that, we also have some of THE BEST venues nestled right there admist all of that gorgeous natural landscape.  Well, today I have news for you!  There is a BRAND NEW venue that you are DEFINITELY going to want to check out!  River Bottoms Ranch is currently being built in the stunning Heber Valley and is opening in fall of this year – AND they are currently booking starting September 2018 for this year and for all of 2019!  So start thinking about your holiday parties for this year and if you have any Sundance events for 2019, this is the place!!!  Stay tuned, you are going to want to see this. 🙂

Isn’t this setting just a dream?  We LOVE it and River Bottoms Ranch fits in just perfectly.

Not only are the surroundings breathtaking, but the inspiration for the interior design is AMAZING.  I mean, just look at this design board.  I would like to take 2 of each of all of that please.  😉

I couldn’t help but share this cute pic of the owners on the venue, Jared and Janica!  They are two of the nicest people and make it their priority to make sure that your event is unforgettable (in the best way!)

What a greeting!  This is the view as you pull into the venue and we are sure your guests are going to be pleasantly surprised!

Another pic of the beautiful surroundings at the venue!  It was a bit cloudy the day we visited, but you can just make out a perfect vantage of Mt. Timp!

Imagine how lush and green this will be for summer/fall ceremonies!  This meadow is one of the outdoor options for hosting an outdoor ceremony or cocktail hour.  SOOOO pretty!

Now to the fun stuff!  Although they still ‘under construction’ I thought it would be fun to put a side by side of the rendering of the finished product with the progress photos!  First up, this is the driveway that pulls up right to the beautiful front door of the venue and right above is the fantastic Juliet balcony in the bride’s room!  You should see the view from there!!!

Next up, the main room which will boast amazing chandeliers, whitewashed wood, gorgeous sconces, and sliding barn doors to open up to the mountain views outside!

And, lastly, this view of River Bottoms Ranch which shows ALLLLL of the windows that are going to let in so much beautiful natural light!  Plus, doesn’t it just look like the perfect venue for any event! We think so!

We are so excited to see the finishing touches being put on to River Bottoms Ranch and can’t wait to check it out when it officially opens this fall.  We are also so excited to be a part of the amazing events we are sure will be hosted there!  (Special note, our very own Ryan Crafts help them design the kitchen in this stunning place, so you know we are SO ready to get to creating some delicious bites there!!!)  But, remember, if you think this is PERFECT for your wedding, holiday party, Sundance fête, or any other event, they are booking now from September 2018 on for this year and for all of 2019 and dates are filling up fast!  Happy planning, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

‘In Progress’ photos of River Bottoms Ranch by Angela Howard Photography

Trend Report: Extend Your Cocktail Hour!

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Modern Wedding Style, Hot Tips for Cool Brides, Venues We Love, Wedding Trends

Today on the blog, we have a GORGEOUS wedding we had the pleasure of being a part of recently that was held at one of our favorite venues, the Natural History Museum of Utah!  Generally speaking, this venue doesn’t need much decor to make an impact because it’s designed so beautifully inside, so it’s perfect for couples looking for a modern, clean design – and even more perfect for those who want to treat their guests to gorgeous views while enjoying delicious food!  Speaking of which, one of the trends we are seeing a lot of lately is the idea of hosting an extended cocktail hour for guests to mix and mingle at and offering an elaborate variety of hors d’ouevres to keep them happy too!  Without further ado, let’s see this stunning fȇte!

© Heather Nan Photography

Firstly, one of the more unique parts of this wedding was that the couple chose to host their wedding ceremony at Red Butte Garden’s Rose House, which is actually next door to the Natural History Museum of Utah.  We LOVED this idea to host the celebration at 2 different venues!  Also, we hosted a little pre-ceremony cocktail hour (even on top of the extended cocktail hour during the reception) and of course, we had beautiful signature cocktails for the guests.  LOVE!

What an entrance!  The guests were treated to the gorgeous natural surrounds as they made their way to the wedding reception.  Simply gorgeous!

Simple, clean, modern design was in full force here – and what a gorgeous impact it made!  FUSE Weddings and Events and Orchid Dynasty put together an AMAZING design that really fit in perfectly with the existing space.  And how cool are those branches as centerpieces?  They complimented the green glass accents beautifully!

Another look at this beautiful table, because, why not?!  Simply perfect.

We love putting a simple, beautiful menu on each plate.  Not only is it informative, but it gets the guests excited for what’s to come!  And, boy, were they in for a treat!

As I mentioned before, we are seeing longer, more elaborate cocktail hours more and more often.  This wedding was a perfect example of this trend!  Kendall (the bride) wanted a longer cocktail hour as this was her favorite part of every wedding she has ever attended, so, we planned a lot of wonderful passed hors d’oeuvres to keep everyone happy!  These Petite Quesadillas with Avocado, Brie, Kalamata, & Roasted Red Pepper and Lamb Lollipops with Mint Pesto were only the tip of the menu ‘iceberg’!

We also served Watermelon Cube Skewers with Balsamic Reduction & Mint Chiffonade and Sweet Pea Mash with Roasted Tomato & Focaccia Crisp.  Yum!  And doesn’t our amazing staff look awesome passing these delicious bites to the guests?  We think so!

Last, but certainly not least, we rounded out this fantastic offering of hors d’ouevres with Smoked Salmon, Capers, Olive Oil on Frozen Slice of Lemon; Bacon-Wrapped Dates with Cold-Smoked Goat Cheese; and Lump Crab with Key Lime Juice, Jalapeno, Sea Salt on House Potato Crisps.  Seriously delectable!

What a view!  The guests not only were treated to amazing eats, but these stunning views and a bluebird sky!  This is certainly one of the most unique elements that NHMU boasts.

When the guests were welcomed inside for dinner, they still were treated to those signature views while they dined!  The floor to ceiling windows are STUNNING!

Another view of the guests getting ready to enjoy a fantastic plated dinner!  Plus, doesn’t NHMU just look AMAZING?!

First up, the guests were served Snuck Farms Baby Butter Lettuce Head with Parmesan and Lemon Zest, with Honey Citrus Vinaigrette, and finished with Sea Salt.  We also pre-set a Mini Herb Sourdough Bagette with Compound Herb Butter Paddle at each guests seat, which looked amazing!  A perfect summer menu first course!

Even with the variety of hors d’ouevres, the guests still happily dug into this first course.  The guests LOVED it!

We also served a selection of 3 entrees so guests could choose what they’d like!  (Always such a nice touch to make your guests feel special.)  They had the choice of Mesquite-Grilled Trout Filet with Sweet Tomato Jam, Hand Torched Sous Vide Beef Tenderloin with Wild Mushroom Chauseur Sauce, or Vegetable Napoleon with Sweet Tomato Jam.  Each entree was served with Marscapone & Asiago Grilled Polenta Cake with Micro Greens and a Fresh Green Bean Bundle Tied with Chive.  So good!

© Heather Nan Photography

Such a BEAUTIFUL wedding for Kendall! After the guests ate their fill, they danced the night away…  All while enjoying watching the city lights appear which provided the perfect finishing touch to a romantic day.  So amazing!  And, if you are the kind of couple who wants to really offer a lot of mingling with your guests, we’d definitely suggest an extended cocktail hour as an option!  Such a great idea and lets you really get to visit with all of your special people.  Happy planning, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

An Elegant, Unique Utah Valley Wedding

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Event Tips and Planning, Food, Modern Wedding Style, Hot Tips for Cool Brides, Wedding Trends

 

Today on the blog, have I got an AMAZING wedding for you!  It is full of personal touches, gorgeous florals, and FABULOUS food (of course)!  We were honored to be a part of Beth and Jeff’s stunning, and totally unique, wedding day!  This post is a long one, but I promise, you won’t be disappointed!  Check it out!

 

From our very own Jocelyn Gillies: “The location of the wedding is what meant the very most for the couple. The private residence (where the dinner was held) is the home they were living in when they got engaged. They then began building their home together on the property next door which is where the wedding ceremony took place, in the framed structure of their new home.”  Isn’t that so beautiful?  I love that they incorporated so much of their story into their wedding!

This wedding’s palette was clean and crisp, and all shades of white.  The feel was a Bohemian respite nestled in the mountains – and boy did these florals and the design deliver!  So pretty!

If you are looking for another fun element to add to your cocktail hour, We smoked oranges as part of our cocktail hour offerings.You eat them rind and all.  So delicious and a total crowd-pleaser.

Talk about delicious!  The couple, who both work in the health food industry and also own a health food company, were very particular about the menu – as were many of their guests!  This just goes to show that healthy does not have to be boring.

Most of this deliciously health-conscious menu was paleo centered, including these bites.  House-Made Duck Ham in a Basil Boat, Roasted Bone Marrow with Baked Root Vegetables and Thinly Sliced Sourdough, and Roasted Jersey Pepper and Strawberry Shooters topped with a Sweet Pepper Sliver and Sous Vide Strawberries. This Jersey pepper was a nod to the Groom’s East Coast roots.

Culinary Crafts loves custom charcuterie and getting to feature our local artisan vendors!  We served assorted smoke, salt, and air cured Creminelli salumi and proscuitto, all hand carved at the station.

The most unique part of this event was the seating. Guests were seated at one long table. So this simple and impactful chart as guests entered helped everyone find their seats without hassle.

There was SOOOO much more food.  A couple of the butler-passed hors d’oeuvres to start the evening, Lamb Shoulder in a Belgian Enive Leaf with Mint Chiffonade, Smoked Rocky Mountain Trout on a Watermelon Radish with Salacia Micro Greens, and Salmon Sashimi with Fingerling Lime ‘Caviar’ on a Utah Sea Salted Kettle Chip.

This Bison Carpaccio with Citrus Glaze and Brined Caperberry was so pretty and unique  Also, inside scoop, it was pretty darn tasty.

The last of the amazing cocktail hour nuggets- Compressed Local Watermelon with Arugula and Balsamic and Crispy Pork Belly with Garlic Greens and Balsamic Sultanas on Crostini.  What a way to round out the start of this fantastic menu, wouldn’t you say?

We LOVED the textural diversity that the table length floral runner added to the design!  I know many people think that an all-white palette can get monotonous, but add texture and different floral variations and you got something engagingly enticing.  This is one of those trends that I think we will be seeing for a long time.

This day was HOT.  Really, really hot.  The way only a Utah day in July can be and so we were constantly spraying down the florals to keep them pretty AND offering all of the guests ice cold drink offerings to keep them cool.  One way Culinary Crafts loves to do this is by offering infused waters like Citrus Mint and Orange Strawberry – and for those guests who wanted something a little sassier than water, we offered His and Hers cocktails! His Rocky Mountain Manhattan and Her Hummingbird.

Another trend we loved from this tablescape, the mixed metals with the simple menus.  Rose gold flat ware, mercury glass votives, and the all white palette.   Heavenly.

To welcome the guests to dinner, our house made ciabatta loaves were was pre-set along the tables and were served along with Pink Himalayan Salt compound butters.

And, let me just go back to this table, because, man it is gorgeous!  Creating this stunning and intimate experience for the bride, groom, and their guests was definitely the highlight of the evening.

To kick off this incredible culinary journey, we served Snuck Farm Rainbow Chard, Whipped Ricotta, Barbequed Beets, Finely Chopped Granola, Toasted Quinoa, and Slide Ridge Honey Vinaigrette.  Not to be outdone, the second course was an equally amazing plate of Pan Seared and Butter Poached Sea Scallops with Micro Amaranth, Hand-Cut Zoodles with Cashew Avocado Cream, and Shaved Parmesan.  Mmmm…

 

Let’s take a minute and recognize the incredible Culinary Crafts staff who always keeps it classy, even in the most unique of serving situations and extreme temperatures. They are truly an amazing group. Since this event was in the middle of a field, our kitchen options were limited. So Culinary Crafts did what we do best. Created our own kitchen. The team brought in grills, ovens, burners, tables and more to create this lovely meal.

To round out the dinner we served Summer Vegetable Terrine and Lemon Caper Rubbed Red Bird Chicken and Snuck Farm Sorrel Picatta with waiter poured velouté.  Added a elegant ending to this family style meal.

It isn’t quite sunset yet, but you can see the light starting to fade and I have to say,​ the most dramatic note of the evening came by way of the candlelit dining table running through the open mountain escape.  Truly breathtaking in every way.

After dinner the guests were invited to enjoy coffee and a selection of scrumptious desserts.  Our ‘Coffee Nerd’ coffee bar is one of our favorite action stations – and the guests are always big fans!

On to the desserts (my favorite!) The Bride and Groom both hail from the east coast and when Jocelyn met them for the first time she let them know that our assistant pastry chef (who happens to be Sicilian) made the BEST cannolis Jocelyn had ever had! To say they were hesitant was an understatement, but once they had one for themselves, the totally agreed and added it to their menu!   Love all of the special details that made this a unique, tailored experience for the couple and their guests!

We didn’t stop there! Homemade Mountainland Apple Pie with Culinary Crafts’ house made Caramel Gelato topped with Warm Whiskey Raisin Caramel Sauce as well as Zabaglione Shooters topped with Fresh Berries, Micro Basil, and Candied Pistachio Biscotti.  I’ll take one of each, please!

Last, but certainly not least, we served Grilled Stone Fruit over Culinary Crafts’ Bourbon Madagascar Vanilla Gelato.  So simple and so delicious!

The couple planned for the party to go into the wee hours, and of course, they made sure that their guests were well fed the entire time!  They asked us to serve a selection of late-night noshes, including a Pho After Dark Bar!  We loved this idea!!! Truly catering for those who give a Pho.

Thank you to Beth and Jeff for letting Culinary Crafts be a part of your epic wedding day!  We absolutely loved every minute of this event and hope you did too!  Happy planning all!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Photos by Angela Howard Photography

Friday Instagram of the Week!

By | A Kitchen Like No Other, Corporate Events, Culinary Crafts Events, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Instagram of the Week, New at Culinary Crafts, The Tasting Room, Venues We Love

Today’s Friday Instagram of the Week comes from, Heather, one of the fantastic guests from our Annual Penny Party!  We had SOOO much fun unveiling our new foods and trends and seeing all of your wonderful faces too!  This pic is of our charcuterie station and it was one of the most popular of the night!  We loved it because it married 3 of our FAVORITE local vendors fine offerings in perfect harmony; High West Whiskies, Beehive Cheeses (including a Culinary Crafts creation), and Creminelli Meats.  Yum!  Thank you to Heather for sharing this pic!  And remember, for your chance to be chosen next, tag your photos with @culinarycrafts or add the hashtag #culinarycrafts to your post and then check back next week to see who is picked next!  Happy weekend, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Friday Instagram of the Week!

By | Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Instagram of the Week, Modern Wedding Style, Hot Tips for Cool Brides, Venues We Love, Wedding Trends

Today’s Instagram of the Week comes from @nannetteyorkfloral who posted a peek of this STUNNING Sleepy Ridge wedding that we had the pleasure of being a part of!  One of my favorite parts of this spectacular day?  The Culinary Crafts signature Flaming Doughnuts station (seen here)!  Always a crowd favorite and SO delicious!

Thank you for sharing, Nannette, and remember, for your chance to be picked next, tag us at @culinarycrafts or add the hashtag #culinarycrafts to your post and check back to see who’s pic we choose!  Happy weekend, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

NYE Pop Up Sneak Peek: Dry Aged Beef

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Holiday Parties, Pop Up Restaurants, The Tasting Room

Well, as you know, everyone here at Culinary Crafts LOVES the holiday season (I mean, who doesn’t?)!  We especially love that this time of year really inspires friends and family to gather together over great food!  Another reason why we are especially excited for the upcoming holidays?  You might have heard that our New Year’s Eve pop up is coming up and, oh man, the menu is going to be OUT OF THIS WORLD!  Chef Ryan Crafts has spent months putting together a decadent over-the-top menu that is a foodie’s dream.  And one of the AMAZING elements he’s bringing to your plate is fantastic Dry Aged Beef.  *queue the drooling*

Raw beef

So, what’s so special about Dry Aged Beef? you might ask.  As Ryan Crafts puts it, “This is the epitome of beef.”  Well, I don’t know about you, but that sounds pretty darn good!

7 day aged-beef

Basically, the beef is kept in a temperature, wind, and light controlled room for anywhere from 28 to 200 days. Over time, the water in the beef evaporates which concentrates the flavor just like reducing a sauce would. With prime cuts of beef this flavor is even more amazing the longer the beef ages (like a good cheese or a great wine).  It also allows for enzymes to start working on breaking down the muscle so the meat gets more and more tender with each passing day. After the desired amount of time (60 days for Ryan Crafts) the beef is butchered and trimmed away of all the jerky-like outer edges and you are left with, perhaps, some of the best tasting steak that money can buy.

60 day aged beef

This process takes a lot of know-how and time to make sure you end up with something truly special – which is why it’s such a special menu item!  Plus another fun fact?  We started aging the beef for our Pop Up in October in a facility in Vegas who also ages beef for the likes of top chefs like Guy Savoy and Jose Andres.

We are SO excited to spend New Year’s Eve with our foodie friends and can’t wait to dazzle your taste buds with ALL of the amazing courses.  If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet though, make sure you get them soon!  They are going fast!  Plus, wouldn’t this make the perfect gift for someone special in your life?  (Hint: The answer is yes!)  Happy eating, everyone!

 

For tickets to the pop-up, check out the pop-up page on our website.

First two photos from Fine Cooking, last photo from Pat LaFrieda Home Delivery.

Friday Instagram of the Week!

By | Event Tips and Planning, Featured: Culinary Crafts in the Press, Instagram of the Week, The Tasting Room, Vendor Love!, Venues We Love, Wedding Trends

Today’s Instagram of the Week comes from the fantastic Love Wins Utah with this pic from one of our FAVORITE weddings ever.  (You can see more from this AMAZING celebration on SLPC Bride & Groom’s blog here.)  Plus, how cute are their pups?!  LOVE IT.  Thank you for sharing Love Wins Utah!  And remember, for your chance to be next week’s pick, tag us at @culinarycrafts or add the hashtag #culinarycrafts to your posts and check back to see who gets picked next!  Happy weekend, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Culinary Crafts’s Annual NYE Pop Up Preview: The Cocktails!

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Holiday Parties, Parties, Pop Up Restaurants, Recipes

Today, we are going to be showing you a little preview of some of the AMAZING things you can expect from Culinary Crafts’s New Years’s Eve Pop Up!  Every year, we make sure to showcase unforgettable eats and drinks to ring in a New Year and create a one-of-a-kind celebration for all of our guests – and this year is no exception.  Ryan Crafts has been creating this stellar menu for months (yes, months) and it incorporates quite a few specially aged elements.  One such offering?  The cocktails!  Check it out!

The cocktail menu consists of a Barrel-Aged Blood Orange High West Old Fashioned, a Barrel-Aged Key Lime Beehive Gimlet, and a non-alcoholic Barrel-Aged Meyer Lemon and Cherry Soda.  Who else is intrigued?  I know I am!

We LOVE our local distilleries and High West’s American Prairie Bourbon was a perfect addition to Barrel-Aged Blood Orange High West Old Fashioned.  The proprietary blend of bourbons are aged from 2 to 13 years, creating a complex taste – which really added something special.

Another interesting element?  Ryan Crafts decided to incorporate oak chips to every drink!

Another fantastic local distillery is Beehive Distilling and we were so THRILLED to use it in the Barrel-Aged Key Lime Beehive Gimlet.  They use a blend of 7 botanicals that create a really unique profile.  Couple that with Key Lime?  A whole lotta awesome going on.

Bing Cherries will serve as one of the garnishes and adds a touch of sweetness that is just perfect – especially for winter cocktails!

As you can see, something really amazing is being put together for our NYE menu!  We hope you will join us for this extraordinary event – but hurry quick!  Tickets are going fast!  (Get them here.)  Happy dreaming, everyone!

Check our more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Instagram of the Week!

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Holiday Parties, Instagram of the Week, Modern Wedding Style, Hot Tips for Cool Brides, Parties, Vendor Love!, Wedding Trends

Today’s Instagram of the Week comes from M + B Events, who posted this BEAUTIFUL detail shot of an inspiration shoot we were a part of this year!  We LOVE this photo and think its perfect for the season, plus, pomegranates and gold leafed pears as table decor?  Yes, please!  Thank you so much, M + B Events for sharing!  And remember, for your chance to be next week’s pick tag us at @culinarycrafts or add the hashtag #culinarycrafts to your post and check back to see who gets picked next!  Happy Monday, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Culinary Crafts Thanksgiving Game Plan!

By | Cooking Classes, Culinary Crafts Events, Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Holiday Parties, How To, Parties, Tips

As promised, here is the tried-and-true Culinary Crafts’s Thankgiving Game Plan!  Our very own Mary Crafts-Homer wrote this awesome timeline for those who are looking for a well planned, less stressful, and fabulous Thanksgiving – and don’t we ALLLL want that?!  Yes, yes we do!

We LOVE this plan because it really does make planning SOOO easy – but let’s be honest too…  It’s no fun for just one person to do this all by themselves!  You need your family (or friends) to join together to help make this a perfect holiday.  So, being the super smart woman Mary is, she wrote this plan with different tasks in mind to delegate out.  And believe me, when everyone lends a hand, that’s when the best memories are made.  Happy planning everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!