Jessica Seinfeld's Baby Buggy dinner in Amagansett and Alyssa Milano's wedding this past Saturday. With more than 15 gigs lined up for New York Fashion Week (including nine on Fashion's Night Out), Giuliani quite literally has a full plate. She chatted with WWD about Pilgrim costumes, magical dining and foregoing the fois gras.
WWD: Have you seen a direct economic impact on the events you cater?
Mary Giuliani: Yes, I think we were popular this summer because our food has always been fun and approachable. People wanted food that reflected low key, comfortable entertaining --food and drinks that made people want to take off their shoes and stay awhile.
WWD: Pigs in a blanket, mini burgers and mini grilled cheese have become ubiquitous at parties this year. Do you think that's a product of the economy?
M.G.: I think everyone loves these items and used the economy as a great excuse to not have to serve or eat caviar, foie gras or smoked salmon.
WWD: What are your most requested hors d'oeuvres and dishes?
M.G.: Everyone loved our mini kebabs, mini grilled cheese, veggie burgers with green bean fries and our black pepper mac & cheese cones this summer.
WWD: What is one of the most challenging events you've catered?
M.G.: The Harry Potter premiere. It was our first large event we ever did and we had to hire waiters that had that "Potter" look. I ended up with great characters, but terrible waiters. I was petrified and spent most of the night hiding in the kitchen. Lucky for us the event was a huge success.
WWD: What is the most unusual request you've had from a client?
M.G.: Could my waiters serve Thanksgiving dinner dressed as Pilgrims.
WWD: Who are some of your fashion clients?
M.G.: I have been so lucky to work with so many wonderful brands like Ferragamo, Carolina Herrera and Zac Posen. J. Crew is hands down my favorite. Creatively they keep me on my feet. Since each store is so incredibly unique, I get the opportunity to customize the food and beverage experience to be a reflection of each store. Plus selfishly I LOVE their clothes.
WWD: Are fashion people more challenging clients in any way? Do they tend to have different requests than your other clients?
M.G.: Yes, that the Champagne flows cold and abundant all night!