Between the Bread is the real deal in corporate catering. Founded by Ricky Eisen, Between the Bread is considered one of Manhattan’s most renowned and prestigious corporate catering companies, with the longevity and talent to back it up. Along with 5-star, fresh gourmet cuisine that is customized to meet client needs, Between the Bread provides all-encompassing services to make a corporate event a smashing success.
Between the Bread does more than simply provide the food. They can locate event venues, design and decorate spaces, hire wait staff and arrange for rentals. With over 30 years experience Between the Bread offers its customers the best customer service in the business.
MO: What distinguishes Between the Bread from other catering companies?
Ricky: Between the Bread is unlike any other catering company we know of. We specialize in tailoring the event to the client’s motif or goal. For example, a client is celebrating the winning of an important award. The winner is from South Africa. We will design an event representing South Africa by introducing the wines and cuisine of the region. The decor will be walls of orchids and tropical leaves and the walls will feature large silhouettes of wild animals. Although this sounds like what most event companies do, because we are also a catering company, we can control and manage all the aspects of the event down to the last bite or Babotie (South African stew.) We are not constricted by a particular cuisine, a printed menu. We create a total package which will fit into the client’s scheme. We are now working on a new challenge. Our client’s theme is “rising” and we created towers of food to match their concept.
MO: What do you believe is the most important aspect of a successful event?
Ricky: Exceed your client’s expectation. When a client walks into a room or looks at the decor and presentation, the first word we want to hear is “wow”. Anything after that is gravy (no pun intended.)
MO: You are launching another website EventsandCelebrationsNYC.com how will this site add to your already credible brand?
Ricky: After 32 years of being in the catering business we no longer need to explain our name. Between the Bread has become a brand name synonymous with excellence in catering. But since we provide many services to our clients, the new web site will make it easier to expand the message that we are not just a catering company, but also an event planning company. Our experience is that we can feed our clients large concepts but we need to give them small bites which they can digest more easily. (Really sorry about these food related metaphors, but I can’t help myself.)
MO: You mention that if your company didn’t react to the changes in the market, styles and tastes, you would not be in business. Can you explain further some of the changes you have had to react to?
Ricky: When we first started our business, “corporate catering” consisted of delis and Greek diners delivering hugh tuna, turkey and roast beef sandwiches, accompanied by cole slaw and potato salad. We started out with a more visionary menu which included curried tuna, filet mignon and whole shrimp sandwiches. Our salads boasted roasted new potatoes, string beans with almonds and pasta with fresh mozzarella. Success came easily in the beginning because our food was so fresh and interesting. It didn’t take long for other catering companies to imitate our menu and offer it at a lower price. That’s when we decided that we couldn’t compete in the daily sandwich market. We had to move on to new fields. That’s when we developed the drop off cocktail mélanges. These are 40 or so hors d’oeuvres (finger food) presentations, cuisine or region focused, ideal for cocktail parties and other celebrations. So far none of our competitors are able to replicate what we do, but we aren’t waiting. We are moving forward and building whole events around these mélanges and have started to modify these to our clients’ themes. If we were today what we were in 1979, we would be fighting for market share with every Subway or Cafe Metro in the city, not an enviable position to be in.
MO: Can you explain how you successfully grew the business from a small take out and delivery shop to a highly respected, much imitated, branded, and catering company dealing with the top echelon of corporate New York?
Ricky: That’s easy. Uncompromising quality and consistent good service. Not to mention hard work.
MO: Can you tell us about one of your favorite events that you have been a part of?
Ricky: A client from San Francisco came to NYC to introduce his products which are all “green.” The client asked us to create a “green” event. In addition to using only organically grown products we needed to visually exemplify the concept. We used elements found in nature such as stones, rocks, tree branches, leaves, moss and some flowers. By incorporating these into the buffet we were successful in highlighting the elements which were important to the client, i.e. his products come from nature. Additionally we searched and found interesting natural accoutrements such as wooden forks and palm leaf plates to complement the theme. In the end, we exceeded our client’s hopes and created a very successful event for him and his firm.
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