Nordstrom Eaton Centre held an impressive gala prior to their grand opening on September 14, 2016. The 213,000 square feet flagship store is Nordstrom‘s first Toronto store, and they celebrated it with 2,000 guests. The gala opening epitomizes what Nordstrom is all about – great customer service and consistency of the brand. Hence why they partnered with Daniel et Daniel to be the official caterer of the Nordstrom Opening Gala, as both companies share the same ideals and business ethics.
The team at Foodaholic! were graciously invited by Daniel et Daniel to attend the event earlier this month. We were given a behind-the-scenes tour from the event planning team of the kitchen area. This opportunity included a chance to chat with the people behind Daniel et Daniel, including their Executive Chef about the company, and menu development for the evening.
Daniel et Daniel started planning for the Nordstrom Eaton Centre Opening Gala back in February 2016, as they were tasked to create a customized menu for 2,000 guests. The menu development team has always taken a collaborative approach to catering, so they worked closely with Nordstrom to create a unique and innovative menu. A lot of strategic planning was done ahead of time into curating this large-scale event.
Management went through great lengths to make sure that their brand standards were met. They did so by attending other launch parties that Nordstrom held prior to the Eaton’s Centre official gala to get an idea of what to offer guests.
Steak Frites Choc-Orange Truffles
Mango Carrot Thai Spring Roll– mint, coriander, rice noodle, hoisin dip
Daniel et Daniel was founded over 35 years ago when the owners (Daniel Clairet and Daniel Megly) discovered an opportunity within the catering industry. Unlike today, there was a lack of options available for corporations, and private parties to select from back then. Since their humbled beginnings, they have grown to provide top of the line catering throughout the city, and became one of Toronto’s premier caterers today.
It’s clear that decades later, Daniel et Daniel have established themselves as one of the leaders in the catering industry with their ever-expanding list of high-profile clients. The company’s secret to success is the level of consistency with their food, staff, and branding.
Not only has the catering scene become more saturated, but Toronto has become one of those cities that has defined food to be an art form that demands constant innovation. Daniel et Daniel does not slack from this, as their top chefs are routinely sent to restaurants to seek culinary art that can be brought back into the world of catering. Future prospective clients are presented with a palatable delight of Daniel et Daniel’s ever changing selection. With 100% of the proceeds being donated to six charities, there was a lot at stake to ensure Nordstrom looked the best they possibly could.
Loaded Mini Hasselback Potato (Gluten Free) – bacon, white cheddar, sour cream, chives
Spiced Watermelon & Feta Salad (Gluten Free) – chili lime-spiced watermelon, feta salad, blackberry gelee, mint, basil & lime dressing
Classic Deviled Egg Double – smoked bacon
Baby Carrot & Buttermilk Dip
Brie & Strawberry Tapas
Melon Prociutto Tapas
Without a doubt, Daniel et Daniel leverages their competitors by having the edge to bake in-house. This gives them better control over the preparation time, and quality of their baked goods. For the duration of the evening; drinks, foods, and dessert were readily available on all three floors of the party. Nordstrom made it clear that they did not want line ups, and food had to be available with quick service at all times. From what was witnessed at the event, I would say that Daniel et Daniel went above and beyond with Nordstrom’s requests.
Mini Popsicles – Blood Orange Panna Cotta
Chocolate Coconut Orange Truffles with Candied Orange Peel
Mini Strawberry Eclairs Fresh – strawberries, choux pastry, whipped cream, strawberry glaze
Coconut Panna Cotta topped with Citrus Salad
Thank you to Daniel et Daniel for the fantastic evening, and allowing us to see the collaboration of two great companies who set their mission to focus on the customer’s needs first. The Opening Gala was definitely not short on the diverse selection of plated dishes and desserts. The meticulous planning and attention to details from Daniel et Daniel was well executed. They definitely delivered on creating a menu of exceptional cuisine that was well fitted for the strong Nordstrom brand.
Daniel et Daniel will also be catering the upcoming Nordstrom Yorkdale Opening Gala on October 19th from 7 pm to 10 pm. Tickets for the gala can be purchased here.
Join Daniel et Daniel at the upcoming Toronto Catering Showcase 2016 on Sunday, October 16, 2016, as they will be one of several caterers there as well.
Article collaboration between Sandi and J.J of SMD Group.
Disclaimer: The event provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.