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Behind the Curtain


Meet Mandy Braidic Event Catering, EC Galleries


How did you become a part of the team at EC Galleries? I catered the Grand Opening for EC Galleries in La Jolla back in 1997. Since then I’ve been catering gal- lery events, from EC’s monthly art shows to private client events. I love the creative license I have been given to be able to present my food in collaboration with each artist’s unique style and theme.


What impact do you think your food has on EC’s art shows? My food adds to the overall sensory experience that guests enjoy when they attend an art show. While the art provides the visuals, the food completes the overall expe- rience by satisfying guests’ palate and olfactory senses.


How do you create custom menus for each art show? I first study the work of the artist to understand the feel- ing they are trying to convey through their art, and then I try to compliment that theme in my food. For instance, Asencio’s work has very bold and dramatic qualities, so if I were catering his show, I would try to match that with something as bold as a date stuffed with blue cheese and wrapped and grilled in prosciutto.


What inspired you to start cooking? My mother is a great cook, which gave me the opportu- nity to try a lot of different foods. My love of food devel- oped into the desire to share those experiences with oth- ers. With the encouragement of the people I frequently cooked for—my friends and family—I decided to make a career out of it. I love the way food brings people togeth- er. When there is a meal that is shared, there is fellowship, and I find great satisfaction in that aspect of cooking.


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How would you describe your cooking style? Relaxed. Though I love to explore all different traditions and techniques of cooking, sometimes just the simple things are the best. My food is unique in its presentation, because I’ve learned that when something looks appetiz- ing, it usually tastes a lot better. Case in point, I can get kids fighting over fruit when I cut it into cute fruit kabobs. The fruit looks like candy, and the way those kids gobble them down, you would think it was!


What types of food do you make most often? What is your favorite dish? I tend to cook a lot of fresh fish and vegetables. I like to use what is in season because it is always the freshest— and in turn, it tastes the best.


What other types of events do you cater? I cater all types of events, from small private parties to large formal events.


For more information about hiring Mandy for your next catering event, visit: www.mandyscustomcatering.com.


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