Business Builders

Standing Apart

Competing For Recognition

Located in a town of 2,000 people, owners Rick and Jane Mines thought their pizzeria’s growth prospects were limited. Then they began building regional awareness by competing in national quality oriented cooking contests. So when their pizzas won blind tastings at Pizza Expo, they spread the word by delivering winning versions to TV newscasts back home. The couple also emotionally engages their regulars leading up to each contest by asking them to critique complementary “test pies” as they fine tune their entries. As a result, their business has generated regional word of mouth and attracted new weekly regulars from as far as 75 miles away!

Rick and Jane Mines Nima’s Pizza Gassville, AR


Flavorfully Tender Veal

Closer restaurants offer veal, but many Rhode Islanders insist on enjoying it at Joe Marzilli’s Old Canteen in Providence. The Marzillis have specialized in flavorfully tender veal entrées there since 1956. While the décor and menu have changed little, the landmark restaurant is equally popular today. Joe’s son Sal partly credits the fact that few kitchens today prepare enough veal to truly understand how to judge its quality or prepare it properly. On the other hand, not only are the Marzillis veal experts, they still source their ultra premium veal through an equally knowledgeable specialty butcher!

Sal Marzilli Joe Marzilli’s Old Canteen Providence, RI


Special Event Catering

Special event catering requires the caterer to accompany the food to the event to present and serve it on behalf of the client. Not only does the food have to taste great, the quality of its presentation reflects personally on the customer. (Making clients look good to their guests helps win repeat business.)

Here are some proven ways Joelene DeFranco and her family elevate the presentation of their foods when catering special events:

An attractive table presentation elevates how clients perceive food quality. So to ensure that her foods are always displayed against the most attractive background, Joelene insists on providing her own neatly pressed table linens free of charge. For the same reason, she dresses tables with colorful fresh flower arrangements of her own design, also free to her clients.

Placing all serving platters on attractive risers makes food look more elegant at the same time that keeping them from direct tablecloth contact prevents replaced trays from rumpling crisp linens over the course of the event.

A small, yet elegant detail, when presenting antipasti boards with selected premium cheeses, cured meats, olives, etc., Joelene always places a small, attractively written card next to each specialty, displaying its name or special origin. Accurately identifying “Prosciutto di San Daniele, Friuli, Italy” (instead of leaving it anonymous) helps reinforce the special care she takes in selecting the most flavorful items.

Sometimes Joelene’s team sets up events on their own. So to reinforce the importance of having a visually impeccable presentation, she requires them to always take photos to document their finished presentations before guests arrive. In addition to allowing Joelene to measure their performance, it also provides attractive photos of every past assignment to show prospective clients how elegant (and consistently well organized) their own event will be.

Joelene DeFranco, Owner J. DeFranco and Daughters Catering Bangor, PA