Sitting down to chat food with Sazama’s Fine Catering Executive Chef, Brett Feuersthaler, is both enlightening and hunger-inducing at the same time. To get a sense of how important food becomes in shaping an event menu, just listen to her talk about her love for pushing flavors and finding inspiration in the smallest details.
With over 30 years of culinary exploration and experience, Chef Brett has established herself as a self-assured presence in the kitchen and creative force to be admired at Sazama’s Fine Catering. Her philosophy is just impressive as her capacity to bridge the gap between creativity and classic fine dining.
Her ability to merge her own unique culinary influence with Sazama’s Fine Catering’s focus on elevated cuisine and impeccable service is a testament to her ability to take any concept and use it to enhance, refine and deliver an incredible culinary display.
Recently, the Sazama’s team had the honor of working with Susan G. Komen Wisconsin to plan and create the menu for the More than Pink Gala, which brings awareness to those affected by breast cancer while raising money for life-saving research. The event’s theme was “The Great Gatsby” with a focus on the speakeasy glitz and glamour of the Roaring 20s. The menu, complete with hors d’oeuvres and custom stations, took inspiration from foods that first hit the American scene during that expressive period.
To her, food should not only ignite our senses but capture an experience. Whether you’re at a gala, a wedding or a fundraiser, food isn’t just a secondary experience; it complements and excites, giving guests more to take with them and remember for years to come.
When planning a menu for a special occasion, big or small, Chef Brett says it’s important to take an organized approach to creativity. You don’t have to settle for the basics that are typically considered a safe bet, but you should still maintain a disciplined approach to menu development.
It’s not about throwing ingredients together for the sake of just being visually impressive, but having an understanding of how each ingredient’s flavor profile works together to create a cohesive dish.
Chef Brett has always considered our personal tastes to be our limitations, so the challenge is to make that connection between an amazing dish and someone who perhaps hasn’t explored its ingredients. Presentation and context are a major factor in this, she feels. Recipes and the ingredients used all have some kind of story behind them. Having this insight provides even more appreciation for the enjoyment that follows.
Like every great chef, Brett feels like she is continually competing against herself to consistently improve. To be able to grow and showcase your flexibility, you need to challenge your creativity on a regular basis, she feels. She says it’s important to not settle for the basics for the sake of being traditional, but to challenge convention as a way to inspire.
With the wide scope and scale of events that make their way to the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, we’re grateful to have her inspiration and creativity on the Sazama’s Fine Catering team, pushing the limits on what a memorable celebration can be.