Ask the Experts: The Catering Savants of Culinary Crafts Ryan & Kaleb Crafts

When it comes to putting together some of the best catering in Utah, it’s a family business for the Crafts. Owners and operators of Culinary Crafts, the sibling trio of Ryan, Meagan, and Kaleb Crafts all joke that they’ve been “elbow-deep” in their family-run hosting service since they were old enough to scrub a tub of pots and pans.

But even after 39 years of helping their parents and then running the family business themselves, the passion remains.

“Hosting never gets old,” Ryan says. “At every event, something will surprise you, guaranteed! But it’s great because every event is also a chance to make your guests feel something special, the pleasure of being taken care of.”

That service-based mentality hasn’t gone ignored among Utah’s emerging world-class hospitality scene. Over the years, Culinary Crafts has racked up a staggering 27 Utah Best of State awards, as well as nine “Caties,” which are basically the Oscars of the catering industry.

But what gives Culinary Crafts its wide acclaim is the individual-first approach it takes to each and every hosting opportunity. And suffice it to say, over nearly four decades of catering events all over Utah and abroad, the Crafts know the dos and don’ts of a great time. 

But what makes the difference at a hosted event? The Crafts explain:

Be Fully Present

If you ask Kaleb, he’ll tell you, the best way to be a great host is to be in the moment, with the guests. Let the help you’ve hired, like say, the award-winning caterers from Culinary Crafts, do the running around. You, as the host, should be fully present.

“Don’t try to be a martyr and do everything yourself,” Kaleb says. “Let someone else take the photos and handle the music. Delegate. Call a caterer. Ask for help.”

That way, when the time comes, you can grab a drink, surround yourself with the people you care about and have a great time.

Make a Great Menu

Ryan calls food a “social catalyst.” He’s right. Nothing can make or break an event like the food on hand. When he’s hosting for others, Ryan is conscious of providing bites to eat inviting a welcoming, relaxing environment with plenty of chit-chat.

That might mean trying something new every once in a while.

“I try to provide a mix and the familiar and the new,” Ryan says. “Some of the dishes should be standbys that guests are sure to love, but I also include one or two elements that might be unfamiliar. Throwing in something exciting and a little exotic is a great way to get guests excited and stimulate conversation.”

Culinary Crafts

357 w. 200 south, Salt Lake City 
573 W. State Road, Pleasant Grove
675 Main Street, Park City | 801-225-6575

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