Felicia Events interviewed Whitney and Josh Deri, owners of Dough Catering.
They have a unique twist on catering that is perfect for the out of the box weddings happening
around Reno and Lake Tahoe.
FE: Tell us about Dough Catering. How did you get started?
DC: Whitney & Josh Deri met while attending Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. They both share a great passion for food and hospitality. Whitney was born was raised in Reno and both she and Josh knew Reno would be the perfect place to bring their business ideas to life. Together they own Dough Catering and Petite Chef, an organic baby food company. Both Whitney and Josh are classically trained chefs, therefore they can prepare a wide variety of cuisines, blending both classic and modern techniques.
FE: You both attended the Culinary Institute of America. What drew you to a love of cooking?
DC: For Josh, it was out of necessity. When he was going to college, he was put on a budget and needed to learn how to cook. His parents gave him a few pointers and from that point on, josh was hooked on cooking. He began watching cooking shows and reading numerous cook books. One Thanksgiving, Josh cooked most of the meal and brought up that he wanted to attend a culinary school. The only school he wanted to go to was the [Culinary Institute of America] CIA. He applied and received his phone call of admission and then really hit the books. He taught himself basic knife skills and sauce making before entering the CIA.
Whitney has been cooking for a long time. She loved it even as a young girl, always helping her mom & great-grandmother in the kitchen. Whitney’s real passion for cooking started when she was in her fourth year of college at [University of Nevada, Reno] UNR. School was boring and she felt like her life was stagnant. While studying business management she began to see what her future would hold. Her mom suggested trying something she loved. After very little brainstorming, she decided to start taking some culinary classes at TMCC. After only one semester, she knew this was her true passion and if she was going to cook professionally she needed to attend the best school possible. She applied for the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, NY in July 2009 and [started] in October 2009. It was a whirlwind life change, but the best change she could have ever made.
FE: Eating local and finding local food sources in Reno is a big deal and the unique ingredients of the west coast brought you here. What else inspired you to start Dough Catering?
DC: We both came from families with parents who own their own businesses. For both of us, we knew we always wanted to have our own company and be able to do things without the restrictions that come from working for someone. There is no greater joy than when we satisfy a client and their guests’ needs. Knowing that, all the hard work is worth it.
FE: Do you have set menus or do you only create custom menus on an event by event basis?DC: We have menus we use as general templates. Yet, we constantly create personalized menus on an event by event basis. We enjoy giving each event its own identity so no two are the exact same.
FE: Pop-up dinners sounds like a really cool concept. Tell us about how you came up with the concept and what people can expect when planning one?DC: A pop-up [dinner] is an opportunity for us to be creative. They are open to the public (we sell tickets). It is like a tasting menu for a restaurant, but only for one night. The pop-up idea has been happening in major food cities for the past several years. For us, we like the opportunity to cook for people who would normally not be able to have our food unless they were at an event we were catering.
FE: What should brides expect when they call you for catering?
DC: Brides will receive a one-on-one menu development, budgeting, and event planning. Our food is inventive, modern, and something you do not get everyday. We take great care in using the highest quality ingredients and sourcing locally whenever possible.
FE: How do you decide what’s going to be on a menu for a specific event?
DC: We draw creativity and inspiration from many different areas. We are constantly reading and learning new food trends and techniques. With every client, we have an initial discussion about what they searching for, we then can draw a lot of creativity from those initial conversations.
For more information, visit Dough Catering at their website.
Dough Catering is proud members of Reno/Tahoe NACE (National Association for Catering and Events)
*The oldest and largest professional society that addresses all aspects of the catering industry.