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Idea Book: ACE 2018 finalist A Fare Extraordinaire

The Achievement in Catering & Events (ACE) awards honor those who have worked tirelessly to keep their clients thrilled and their companies on the cutting edge. Each year, caterers and event planners from around the globe submit their best work from the past year in hopes of being recognized as the best in the industry. Catersource’s annual awards show, also including the ICA CATIE awards, took place in Las Vegas at Caesars Palace on February 19, 2018.

Each company submitted two events for ACE consideration. Here is a look at the two events that elevated A Fare Extraordinaire in the category of finalist, Events West over $2 Million in revenue.

All photos courtesy of A Fare Extraordinaire

ONE: A Super Post-Super Bowl Holiday Celebration

The big game had ended and Houston was still resting from hosting the most production-heavy and stimulating events of the season. How do you engage an innovative trading firm at a late-night corporate event?

Christina Kassi of A Fare Extraordinaire worked with her team to create a stylish yet masculine setting for the largely-male audience. The venue’s bare hard surfaces needed to be softened to create a lounge-like environment, using a mix of colors, textures, heights, and shapes and a bold color palette.

Cozy seating areas sparked group conversations. 

Navy velvet couches were placed on top of white oversized plush area rugs, accented by white lacquered geometric end tables and white and green monochromatic floral arrangements. Ambient fuchsia up lights created a comfortable but energetic aurora. These areas encouraged guests to mingle and speak in small comfortable groups.

Scotch samplings added an elegant touch to the evening. 

Enhancing the lounge setting were custom scotch bars with hand-rolled cigars with logo-ed bands.

Says Kassi, “Our ability to intuit our clients’ desires our team to tailor the event to a personal and professional brand.” This is clearly evident in this bold yet intimate affair.

Interested in submitting an entry for the 2019 awards season? The time to act is now. Entries into ACE’s 2019 award program are closing soon!

Click here for the latest information on the 2019 conference & tradeshow.

TWO: Supporting the Arts with a Splash of Color

Creativity and imagination always come into play when producing a non-profit gala. But A Fare Extraordinare “colored outside the lines” to produce the Blaffer Art Museum Gala. Everything from the passed hors d’oeuvres, the seated dinner menu, and the décor were custom designed by AFE to mirror the “Color Splash” theme.

Décor reflected the vibe of the venue–minimalist, contemporary and fun. 

Seasonal and brightly colored culinary creations with intense flavors paired with a myriad of lighting and décor elements created a kaleidoscope effect on the event! Kassi called the evening, “Bright, bold, abstract, and energizing.”

Facing the challenge of Houston’s spring heat and humidity, A Fare Extraordinare had to work within a non-temperature-controlled kitchen tent. They created a light, airy, seasonal and fresh menu, including pickled gooseberry atop vibrant beet hummus passed on a thinly sliced cucumber, beautiful pink salt cured salmon atop a textured crisp wonton, and finally an arugula, cherry tomato, and bacon mousse crostini.  

Even the food was colorful and visually spectacular. 

Table décor is simple yet startling in the use of color. 

Monochromatic table top floral arrangements, alternating napkins colors, amber ghost chairs, and up lighting in various hues, were all designed in a rainbow ombre color scheme.

The lights, flowers, and table décor all popped with color and energy. Photo courtesy A Fare Extraordinaire

“A Fare Extraordinare takes great pride in non-profit involvement, annually donating a large portion of our profits and services to the Houston community,” notes Kassi, “Our long-standing relationship with Houston’s finest vendors provides our clients with the newest products at a discounted rate.”

Click here for information about Catersource and the Art of Catering Food 2019.


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