As managing partner at Luxe Catering, Niccole Chan spends her day dreaming up experiences and creations for her clients, which range from luxury fashion brands and corporate C-suites to even media companies.
Chan, who oversees the Kitchen, Operations and Sales teams, joined Luxe Catering after it launched in 2012: “I was attracted to the opportunity to build a brand from scratch.”
She did more than that – in 2018, Luxe Catering clinched the World Gourmet Summit’s Caterer of the Year Award. The company is also known for glamorous social get-togethers where guests indulge in delicious French fare and impeccable butler service.
While Chan describes herself as a “lazy” cook who usually opts for a casserole, she loves seeking out new restaurants and unique dishes. “Food is always on my mind…I could be having breakfast and asking my husband about dinner plans,” she lets on.
This same spirit of adventure is very much part of her leadership style at Luxe Catering, where she’s constantly exploring new boundaries and sharing new ideas. “As Julia Child says, people who love to eat are always the best people. Food brings people together and inspires the best conversations, don’t you agree?”
What about working in the food business do you enjoy?
The pure satisfaction of being able to help our clients ease through the process of planning and executing the perfect dining experience for their guests. Whenever they leave a raving review, it makes all our effort worthwhile.
Most important lesson you picked up from Covid-19?
That Luxe Catering offers diverse products and not just focus on catering for events. Covid-19 propelled the expansion of our Eshop. For example, we launched Stay Home Family Packs with menus curated for 3 to 4 or 5 to 6 people. And to enable others to show care and support for loved ones during these tough times, we also made available Gift of Love, with treats such as cupcakes and grazing boxes.
Luxe Catering also walked the talk by donating meals to frontline healthcare workers.
We wanted to express our appreciation and gratitude to our frontline healthcare workers. So we partnered World Gourmet Summit for its Honouring Unsung Heroes initiative in April, and contributed and delivered 100 meals to Sengkang General Hospital. When we started receiving requests from individuals and organisations – some of whom are our clients – who wished to do the same, we decided we could do more. So we rolled out Luxe Catering’s Giving Back to the Community initiative in April. Through this platform, people could purchase our discounted meal sets at $6 or $10 each and have them delivered free of charge to the hospitals. We were very encouraged by the response. Over April and May, we got 4,000 meals over to Singapore General Hospital, KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, Sengkang General Hospital, Changi General Hospital and Alexandra Hospital.
Why is it important that you give back to the community when times are so difficult?
We have gotten great support from our community and clients over the years so it was incredibly important for us to stand with our clients and partners to give back. Also, we suddenly no longer had events and did only food takeaways; this initiative provided my team motivation and positivity through the circuit breaker. We received heart-warming messages from the hospitals about how our donated meals gave their kitchen team a break for that day’s dinner service. Meanwhile, as a gesture of appreciation, we also sent donors pictures of healthcare workers and their meals; none of them were expecting this so it was lovely to catch them by surprise!
Now that Singapore is in Phase 2 of reopening, how ready is Luxe Catering for the next step ahead?
We are excited to jump back into catering for events. We took the time during circuit breaker to conceptualise new canape creations, adapt our menus and work out safety measures and guidelines to create a safe environment for guests at events. Covid-19 has drastically changed the F&B scene and it is no easy challenge to overcome but we are ready for it.
Finally, your favourites from the Luxe Catering EShop?
Whole Roasted Angus Striploin and Fresh Norwegian Salmon Wellington, both good for up to 10 persons each. I love a good hearty roast and these are great “star” dishes on the table. I order them frequently for my own home parties.