Foodies Inspire the Rise of Supper Clubs

September 2, 2015

11:00 am

Eating out can mean different things to different people. For some it’s just a bite out when they don’t have the energy to cook at home. For others it may be a celebration or special occasion, or just a night out with good friends. And then there are those who see dining as an experience, an adventure, and a way to learn about their food and engage with new people.

Over the years we’ve seen a rise in supper clubs and chef’s tables. Popular and upscale restaurants like Blue Hill Tavern (NY) and Fish Nook (DC) offer guests an opportunity to sit in the kitchen for one, or more, courses, and watch the chef prepare their meal. This allows the patron to engage with the chef and become part of the experience.

From this trend we’re also seeing an uptick in creative food startups making these supper clubs and chef’s tables accessible to all, and bringing together a community of like-minded foodies.

Three Ways to Experience Dining on a New Level

farm tour cozymealSamad Nasserian is the founder & CEO of Cozymeal, the leading platform in California connecting guests with professional chefs for personalized dining experiences. Differentiating them from other supper clubs out there, this San Francisco-based business not only offers the cooking classes and dining experience in professional chef’s homes, but also a unique Farmers Market shopping trip, followed by a cooking class using those farm-fresh ingredients. I don’t know about you, but this locavore just got really excited! Cozymeal is currently in San Francisco and in Los Angeles.

Dining Scene_emptyAnother unique concept is Kit and Ace’s intimate Supper Clubs, hosted in markets where they have shop locations (they have 26 shop globally) and in key cities worldwide. Kit and Ace is a Canadian retailer that designs and develops Technical Luxury™ lifestyle products. The founders Shannon Wilson and JJ Wilson decided to launch their Supper Club concept as a way to showcase the company’s passion for connecting the creative class – architects, artists, and designers. For these events they partner with local vendors including chefs, craft breweries, florists, and event planners. Guests enjoy a delicious local meal and partake in icebreakers using the company’s own Real Talk Cards.

Tasting Collective_1Founder of Tasting Collective, Nat Gelb always felt like the traditional restaurant experience lacked something special. His ideal dinner outing would be more of an experience. Meals should have a story behind it, a way to learn about how the food is made and where it came from, meet the chef, and engage in new conversations with new people. This is why he founded Tasting Collective as a way to create this exact dining experience.

The company hosts chef-driven communal feasts at top restaurants in New York City. Chefs craft multi-course menus that showcase their favorite dishes, and personally introduce the dishes and the stories behind them. These events are typically hosted on restaurant’s slower nights, and are a way to introduce new diners to the venue. As someone who has personally participated in Tasting Collective’s events, I can tell you that this foodie was blown away by the entire experience, and can’t wait to go back!

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Vanessa Ferragut, CMP is a Sustainable Event and Meeting Planner in Washington, DC. She is the founder of Ferragut Event Group, LLC, an event planning company that focuses on sustainable meetings and events. Vanessa is also a local foods enthusiast and Founder of Greenease, Inc, a mobile app dedicated to promoting restaurants, cafes and grocers that work with local farms and provide sustainable food options. She is passionate about supporting organizations that embrace sustainability in their business and service practices, promote community activism, and minimize their overall environmental impact in the hospitality sector. You can follow her at @vferragut and @GreeneaseApp.