Monday, February 16, 2015

Village Crown goes Abroad: Unforgettable Food from Israel!

By Maxime Keyson

I have just returned from the beautiful country of Israel where I was traveling for the past 2 weeks and am delighted to share some exciting experiences from abroad! Here are some of my favorite food moments from across the Mediterranean Sea (and can be found here at Esprit too!):

No wonder everyone loves the Esprit Candy Station! Israel is covered with amazing mouth-watering candy stands! Dive in and load up your bag for only a few Sheckels! 

This amazing Dim Sum stand at the Carmel Market! You can try any dumpling from chicken and beef to sweet potato & spinach and even goose liver!

You can smell the spices wafting around the streets from these amazing spice stands! 

This local Hot Cider stand in the mountainous village of Tzfat - delicious! 

And of course Shwarma! Everywhere you go you can count on a freshly baked pita stuffed with juicy meats and veggies slathered in hummus and tzatziki! Yum!

Friday, January 16, 2015

My Internship with Esprit Events: Mallory Cohen


By Mallory Cohen

             I went into my internship with Village Crown and Esprit Events knowing event planning sounded interesting, but not really knowing much else.  I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started my first day.  I just hoped that by the end I would have a better idea of whether the event planning industry was still something I would want to consider for my future career.  And coming on the last day of my internship, the answer to that question is officially a yes.  While catering may not be the exact part of the industry that I want to stay with, this internship has helped teach me a bit more of the inner workings of the event industry as a whole, and given me skills I would need for any job.  
The first skill was talking on the phone with strangers.  Most people my age rely pretty heavily on texting, and try to avoid actually speaking on the phone, especially when it comes to phone calls with random people that last longer than a minute.  However, starting day one I have been on the phone almost every day with people, and have had to learn to be more comfortable with it.
Another skill I used was social media.  While I have been using social media since middle school, I have only used it for myself.  However, I see with the social media work that I have done through Esprit and Village Crown that through a company it may be very different approach, because you are trying to appeal to others rather than whatever you want.  But at the same time it is still fun.  Especially when doing things like making a board for wedding cakes on pinterest.  The easiest way to find and write things that appeal to others is things that you yourself find interesting too.  Social media should try to feel personal for the people viewing it.
I also learned just how important presentation and approach is.  This is a catering company, so you would think how the food tastes is the only thing that matters.  But I see that it is much more than that (even though of course the taste is very important).  When viewing a tasting I notice how meticulous they are in arranging everything so that it looks nice.  Whether it is cutting and stacking the string beans into a pyramid, or rearranging the deserts so that the colorful treats are distributed evenly among the darker chocolates on the platter, they clearly put thought into more than just the cooking.  The food, however, is not the only time presentation counts.  I’ve noticed just with the proposal at the start of the process time is spent to make the layout look nice.  There are pictures spread throughout, and for things like the cocktail stations there are cute names for the stations.  All of this is done with thought, rather than just listing out the food and prices.
The last thing I learned that I am going to talk about are from these blog posts.  The force me to not just witness what the companies I am interning for does, but to be able to reflect on the things I am learning and share them with an audience.  It forces me to put more thought into what I am doing, rather than just writing some numbers down in a chart.  In addition, while writing has never been my strong suite these blogs not only taught me that no matter what field you work in writing is important, but also have given me the chance to improve my writing skills.
           Overall interning for Esprit Events and Village Crown has been a short, but informative and rewarding experience.  I plan to take all the things I have learned and use them in my future career.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Customizing Your Station: Make Your Own Cannolis!

By Mallory Cohen

Food and desert stations are common at bat and bar mitzvahs and weddings.  There are always the popular ones that everyone loves, but everyone has seen.  It is nice to do something unique that no one has seen before.  The best is of course to customize and make up your own station!  If I could make any station it would have to be a desert station.  I would make it an interactive cannoli station with an Italian theme.  There would be the option of traditional, chocolate chip, or chocolate filling, with plain or chocolate shells.  There would be toppings on the table to add to the cream coming out the ends of the cannoli, such as chocolate chips, berries, and nuts.  There could be different flavored sauces (such as raspberry, chocolate, and strawberry) to drizzle over the cannolis, and powdered sugar to top off the shell.  What amazing station would you want to see at your event?

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Finding the Perfect Caterer: Step 1

By Mallory Cohen

Trying to find a caterer for your event can be a frustrating stressful experience.  But if you find the right person then they should do the opposite, taking away your stress, and leaving you excited about the possibilities.  The first step to finding someone who will do this for you is a simple phone call.  While on your call here are some questions to think about to help you determine whether you want to work with this company.  
  • Do the answers you get match the answers you hoped for?
  • Does the person on the other end sound excited to work with you? 
  • If you tell them that you’re getting married do they congratulate you?  Do they ask your fiancĂ©’s name?
  • If you already know do they ask for details?  Do they try to see exactly what your vision is?
  • Do they sound willing to make your vision come true?
  • If you don’t really know what you’re doing do they seem like they’ll be able to work with you to help you figure out what you want?
  • Are they able to answer your questions?
  • Have they worked before in the venues you are looking at?
  • How is their pricing?  Would they be able to work with your budget?
  • Do they get back to you in a timely manner?
  • Do they treat you as a person or as a job?

                After figuring out the answers to all these questions, and finding the person who best fits what you want, you are then ready to proceed into a stress free event of your dreams. 

Monday, January 12, 2015

Wedding Dessert Favorites!

Wedding Dessert Favorites!
By Mallory Cohen

If you’re like me the best part of any meal is always dessert.  For a wedding in the past this has always meant wedding cake.  However, recently people tend to be steering towards mini passed desserts either in addition to or completely replacing wedding cake.  There are many different options that go along with this, some popular, with others a bit more unique.
                One of the more popular options is macaroons.  These come is a huge assortment of colors and flavors.  Because of this and their simple shape there are many different things you can do with them.  You can arrange then is a tier, as shown below, which is a very good option if you want to use them to replace a wedding cake.  You can also use specific colors to fit the theme of your wedding.


Another popular option is mini cupcakes.  These bite sized cupcakes lead to no guilt because they are so small. There are adorable with so many flavor and frosting options so no one will be disappointed. Many weddings will also have a wide variety of the mini desserts for their guests to choose from.  Below is a picture from an Esprit Events tasting that took place today.  On the platter you will see things like jello push pops, cake balls, mini mousse cups, fruit, and tarts.  With so many different choices the only downfall is people ending up too stuffed to be able to try them all.


Thursday, January 8, 2015


Learn Your Linens

            By Mallory Cohen              

 While the size of your table linens may not be at the top of the list of the things you think about when planning your party or wedding, it is a necessary part of your preparations.  The linens add to the entire look of the room, and you want to make sure you choose the right ones.

                Most banquet tables at weddings are 72” round.  This should sit 12 people.  The linens needed for this table are 132” round.  As always you can go for a plain white tablecloth which is a classic.  You could also go with a plain linen in your color scheme to tie the room together.  If you want to add an extra touch you can go for a pretty, simple design.  .

                You will also need to get linens for your buffet and cocktail tables.  A buffet table is normally a six foot or eight foot long rectangular shape.  This requires a linen length of 90”x132”.  

A cocktail table will be 30” round.  The linen required for this is 90” round.  Once again with each of these you can either go for white, or another color that fits your theme.


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Need a colorful theme for your next party?

Top three reasons to have a color themed party:
By Mallory Cohen

1)    Everybody loves themed parties.  But if there’s no specific holiday, and people want to stay classy rather than dressing in silly costumes colored themes are the way to go.

2)    They force you to be more creative.  Instead of just doing what you always do, you get to change things up by trying to find food/drinks/decorations that fit your color theme.

3)     It looks good it pictures. (nuff said)