Top Tips: Teambuilding Through Cooking

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January 23, 2012

When one of Kinsley's top clients asked the meeting company to come up with an event that would provide their customers and executives with a memorable experience that would allow them to network in a relaxed environment, they turned to the kitchen.

Since the meeting would take place at the Ballentyne Resort in Charlotte, North Carolina, a region famed for its barbeque, Kinsley decided to create a barbeque sauce teambuilding event. To foster friendly competition and add excitement, the participants were encouraged to bring their own secret ingredient to use in their sauce.

Kinsley brought in Top Chef All Stars Fan Favorite Carla Hall to facilitate the event. Hall, co-host of the TV series The Chew, is known for her southern-style cooking as well as her fun and quirky personality. Participants received an apron signed by Hall and the How to Cook Like a Top Chef cookbook.

Participants were divided into 12 groups of seven, each with its own apron color. Teams gathered around one of 12 work stations equipped with propane burners, paring knives and cutting boards. The ingredient table was located in the center of the work stations, and included more than 40 ingredients and seasonings.

Participants had 45 minutes to create their masterpieces. Half the team worked on the sauce and the other half worked on the branding and logo for the sauce. When all was ready, Hall and three other judges smelled and tasted each sauce. Secret ingredients were revealed, and included tequila and dark chocolate. Awards went to Best Overall Flavor, Most Creative Use of Ingredients and Best Product Name and Branding.

Following the awards, it was off to dinner with the 12 sauces for tasting during dinner. Truly a memorable teambuilding event!

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