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8 tips to get you ready for a fabulous yet affordable BBQ Season

Spring is right around the corner, and what better way to celebrate than to throw a BBQ party for your friends!

Here are some of Chef Christophe and our Head Designer, Sebastien Sanges’ recommendations to get you going for an Instagram-worthy event, without breaking the bank:





  • Check your local store for sale items to plan your menu ahead.
  • Chose a cheaper cut of meat, like tri-tip, and marinate it before the event.   The taste will be wonderful, but you’ll cut way back on cost.
  • Reduce the quantity of each item, but increase your variety. The more diversity you put on a buffet, the less people take of each.


Fairyland wedding 292


  • Select one specialty cocktail to provide for your guests so you can cut down on having to provide several kinds of alcohol.
  • Try selecting a cocktail that can be made ahead in large batches, such as sangria or punch.  That will give you less time as a bartender and more time to enjoy!




  • Use your own china, but use terra cotta pots as elevation on the buffet, to create interest.  You can even get some fresh terra cotta pots, line them with parchment paper, and use them as whimsical serving vessels.  Bonus: you can use the pots in your garden later.
  • Save recycled bottles to use as bud vases, and use your own flowers from the garden.
  • Use benches in your garden and add tables to them to create smaller cocktail-like seating areas. To set the mood, use candle lanterns.



La Bonne Cuisine Proud Sponsor of NACE 2013 Gala


The Lodge at the Regency Center

On November 14th 2013 La Bonne Cuisine Catering & Events will  be a proud sponsor of this year’s National Association of Catering and Events Fundraiser and Gala in the Lodge at the Regency Center in San Francisco. The Lodge is a majestic room with carved wood ceiling, silk tapestries and thirty one hand painted backdrops. This room is the ideal place for a gala of this stature.

Besides our time and servers, we will donate  several passed hors d’ oeuvres to three hundred guests in our respectable field for the cocktail hour for this exciting event. This will be the third gala this year which La Bonne Cuisine has sponsored. LBC has sponsored the MPINCC gala and the ISES luncheon as well. We believe it is important to give support to the industry’s community. We look forward to seeing you there.



Change of Venue Due to Government Shutdown

Rosemary Wedding Collage 2

Photos courtesy of Brian MacStay of Brian MacStay Photography

When the government shutdown on October 1st we could tell a whole new adventure was about to begin for all of us at La Bonne Cuisine Catering & Events. We had a client who had chosen the Maritime Museum as the location of her wedding reception. Due to the shutdown, the museum was closed, and our bride could no longer hold her wedding where she had planned to. We had no other choice but to move the 150 guest event to a new location. We conducted tours of several different venues in hopes to find a perfect match for what the bride was looking for, a view of the Bay. To find a new location which met all the bride’s criteria, was an especially difficult task. All things considered, we only had 72 hr notice, all of the prime locations were already booked, and additional rental fees were beyond the bride’s budget. Our Director of Sales did many site visits but in the end, the bride chose her mother’s house, which had the beautiful view of the bay she was looking for and also held sentimental value. The house is on a hill with almost a 30% slope with more than three flights of stairs to get to the front door. This presented our production team with a whole new set of challenges.

In order to get the private home ready for the 150 person event, drastic measures had to be taken. A landscape team had to come in to manicure the grounds, movers were required to move all of the furniture out to make room for the number of guests, cleaners came in to clean the whole house, and lighting had to be completely changed. On our end, moving the reception meant we had to change the logistics of everything. Menus and floor plans had to be altered, additional site previews had to be conducted and our design team had to completely re-do their original vision to fit the new space. Food stations had to be broken up because of the size of the rooms and the bar had to be placed in room off the entrance. The bussing area was up some more stairs behind the house and the huge professional kitchen we had planned the original menu around, was now downgraded to a small private one. This was a challenge not only to us the caterers and vendors, but also to the grandmother whose health did not allow her to climb the three flights of stairs on her own. We hired two people to help her up the 147… yes 1-4-7 stairs in order for her to be able to enjoy her granddaughter’s big day. All of the extra work that went into changing locations accrued extra costs for the bride and groom, which were eventually absorbed by the refund given by the Maritime Museum. In the end, the bride was extremely happy with the level of service we provided and appreciated the many extra steps we took to make her wedding reception a success.




Globe with orchids and illuminated vases

La Bonne Cuisine/Globe with orchids and illuminated vases

Last night we had our first event at The Exploratorium. We were very well received by the guests, some said we had the best food even though there were many other caterers. We served our Portabella Mushroom Veloute with Black Truffle Oil, Reinvented Spaghetti and Meatball and the Red Fruit Soup. It was the first time I tried the Reinvented Spaghetti and Meatball. The presentation is adorable, one meatball and a small twirl of spaghetti on top skewered by a tiny wooden fork so that one can get a single perfect bite. Our Portabella Mushroom Veloute is one of my favorites. Even though it is creamy, the flavor of the portabella mushroom is not diluted by it. Sometimes chefs put so much truffle oil in a dish it can be overpowering but when used sparingly it is absolutely delicious. I tried the Red Fruit Soup for first time as well. The soup had basil and french vanilla ice cream besides red fruit which were raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries. The combination of fruit and basil was a balanced contrast and the heat of the soup and the cold of the ice cream was an unexpected yet pleasant surprise. The Exploratorium is another museum I look forward to going to, with so much educational information and interactive exhibits, I will be going there often.



Fundraiser at The Academy of Sciences


African Hall after setup

African Hall after setup

Last nights event at The Academy of Sciences was a success.

The client was happy. Happy client = happy Christophe. Sebastien was missed, for he was in France. Tara took over design and got compliments from many guests.

I love working at The Academy of Sciences. I’ve worked there a dozen times and each time I see something I didn’t see before. I always look forward to coming back.

As you can see from the picture this event was a sit down dinner. This one was for over 200 guests. We have catered many events here ranging in the number of guests and in different areas of the museum.

I got to taste the Tomato and Beet Tower for the first time and it was heavenly. Micro greens on top and slivers of fresh mozzarella in the middle. One of the perks of working for La Bonne is the staff get to taste some of the leftovers. I called in couple of past co-worker to work and they both raved about the beauty of the presentation in food and decor all night.

Come in for a quote and tasting and you can experience it for yourself!



Summer in France

This year was amazing in terms of vacations.

First Chicago for almost a week.

It was my first time in this gorgeous city and certainly not the last. The views, the restaurant, the fashion, everything was so great.

River Views from the Trump Tower

We, of course tried the Trump Tower bar. It is expensive but the views are so perfect when the sun goes down. Don’t try the food, it was disappointing.

Building entrance in Chicago

The entire city is a mix of new and antique building. I thought it was very close to Paris somehow.

Then South of France.

Despite the hoards of tourists, summer is actually a pretty nice time to be in France.

Long, hot summer days – it stays light in the south of France way longer than here in North America – plenty of outdoor activities, outdoor markets overflowing with fresh produce, and lots of beaches to work on your tan make the summer a great time to be in my beautiful country.

From the Farmers Markets, to seating and enjoying a glass of rosé at the terrace of a café, and trying some of the best restaurants and table d’hote.

Chateau Miraval (Brad Pitt’s Domaine)

DIner at the Domaine Payrasol

DIner at the Domaine Payrasol



Above are some of the pictures but shall you decide to go and visit, I’d be happy to help you decide what to do.




Maritime Museum

Fantastic Views from The Maritime Museum

Fantastic View from The Maritime Museum

Our most recent event at The Maritime Museum was on the first hot day in the city and there was an abundance of kids and adults swimming and frolicking in the Aquatic Park.

We also had a view of the Alma as we were preparing for the 25th Anniversary Gala for the San Francisco National Park Association with special guest Mayor Willie Brown.

The guests enjoyed passed hors devours of Portobello Mushroom and Black Truffle Velouté, Spicy Ahi Tuna Tacos served in Rice Tacos, and Roasted Quail Legs Wrapped in Prosciutto. For the first course they had our highly in demand Tri Colored Beet Salad with Burrata. For the main course Chef Christophe  created A Duck Trilogy which was consisted of Duck Confit Chiffonade, Smoked Duck Breast and Seared Duck Breast served with a Granny Smith Apple Puree and Green Bean Bundles. For dessert we featured ‘Pearl of the Sea’, which was A Delectable Palette of Chocolate, Caramel and Sea Salts.

The evening concluded with a gentle sea breeze and guests complimenting how wonderful the event was as a whole.



MPICC Gala at The Exploratorium

MPINCC Gala at The Exploratorium (Photos Courtesy of Orange Photography)

June 3rd was a big night for The Exploratorium, Meetings Professional International Northern California Chapter and La Bonne Cuisine Catering amp; Events.

MPICC held their Annual Silent Auction and Gala at The Exploratorium which was catered by LBC for the fourth year in a row.

The Exploratorium was transformed, yet it still had the charm of a museum because all of the interactive displays were out for us to enjoy. The theme of the night was the exploration of science so there were many new items that came to play. For example, the tables and chairs were made of plexi glass and the tables were lit from beneath.

Catering a sit down dinner for 350 guests is no small feat, especially at a new location.

There were four passed hors d’oeuvres but the Mini Duck and Caramelized Apple Tamales with a Mole sauce got outstanding reviews.

Chef Christophe continued the playful theme of The Exploratorium by cutting out shapes of the stars and moon from beets for the salad course, and designer Sebastien used hanging plexi glass shelves to display some of our delicious desserts.

The big splash for the night was the Nitrogen Ice Cream Station and to get a look at a video of it in action you can go to our Facebook page and while you’re there feel free to like us.



Gala at Head Royce
The Gymnasium at Head Royce 

This is the Gymnasium at the Head Royce School after we transformed it. As you can still see the name of the school’s team the Jayhawks in the background. Chef Christophe insisted with good humor that it be aired out the day before the event to get the air fresh.

The first course you see here is the Beet and Burrata Salad made with a Pomegranate, Molasses and Kefir Lime Oil Dressing. The second course not pictured was the 12 Hour Braised Beef  served with Bordelaise Sauce on Gratin Dauphinois with Red and Yellow Peppers Julienne. The Vegetarian option was Bamboo Rice Risotto with Sauteed Market Vegetables and Shavings of Parmesan on top. I’m not a vegetarian, yet I would have been happy to have that as my meal. It seems everyone was very pleased with their meal because from what I saw all the plates that left the tables were empty.

Once again Sebastien outdid himself with his design and decor which includes the center pieces you see here. It was a 15 hour day for some of the production and culinary team. This Gala was a huge success mainly because of their dedication and hard effort.



Tri Colored Beet Skewer

Tri Colored Beet Skewer

This is one of the many beautiful hors d’oeuvres we passed at last nights event. What you see above is the Tri Colored Beet Skewer made with yellow, red, purple roasted beets and peeled and sliced Granny Smith apples drizzled with olive oil. These ingredients may sound simple, but the flavors together are delectable.

The harmonious way the design and the food compliment each other makes this piece as a whole absolutely stunning.

Just as the presentation of the of the passing tray is a combination of bold colors yet delicate pieces, so is the Tri Colored Beet Skewer.

The event was for a long time client of 15 years to celebrate their business of 40 years. Congratulations from all of us at La Bonne Cuisine Catering and Events!

Thank you for your loyal patronage, it has been a pleasure working with you these past years.