“To cater is to accommodate”

 “To cater is to accommodate”  says Tony Loschiavo, L EAT Catering and Paese Ristorante founder, from humble beginnings delivering sandwiches to hair salons in a ’68 Volkswagen bug,  dressed in tuxedo’s,  L EAT Catering has grown from a make shift kitchen in a garage to its current production kitchens at Bathurst and Wilson. We are the people behind the scenes at many of the big social function, wedding, bat mitzvah, bar mitzvah, launch party, corporate luncheon, cocktail party, birthday party, shower, gala, and charity event in this city. 

Chef Tony early 80's

Okay, so here are the players behind L EAT Catering we have Tony Loschiavo, immigrating to Canada in the fifties with his family and quickly using his streetwise Italian style to hustle jars of pesto made in his parent’s garage to running the food operations at the Jolly Miller Tavern. 

The Miller Tavern years ago

At only seventeen he self financed what is now known as L EAT Catering, all before most people his age had figured out what university they were going to drop out of. From there, his catering and restaurant savvy led him to owning his first restaurant on Isabella Street in Toronto in early 1983. The restaurant was called L EAT and featured no sign, and no menu, just a deli case full of ingredients. 

L EAT on Isabella Street, note the '68 delivery beetle

When operations outgrew that location, Tony looked north for a new home and found one in the cheaper rent district and ever burgeoning North York area of Bathurst and Wilson. A nondescript strip mall was the choice for the home of L EAT Catering. Tony went about building a catering company and business that is still growing and breaking ground. 

L EAT and Paese on Bathurst Street

A  self-made restaurateur, avid mountain biker, fisherman, sommelier, carpenter ,engineer and hardest working man in the catering business, and for anybody who has ever worked a catered event in this city in the past 30 years knows, his reputation supersedes him. 

In whites

Priming the glasses, Grand Cru 2009

Salmon fishing during caterings busy season

Deirdre Anderson, LEAT Catering’s visionary guiding light for the past 7  years, took what was an already complete package and put her spin on everything from the companies logo’s, menu styles, restaurant renovations, décor,  and always seems to be able to tie all the loose ends of every single event together to make it a cohesive package. Nobody could understand the painful patience it takes to listen to a customer who calls thirty times to ensure their event runs smoothly, or the feeling of staying up all night going over things in your head hoping you didn’t forget something in a 22 piece place setting for 600 hundred people. Deirdre has rental list programmed in her blackberry with links to catering software so that while she’s on the go she  can cut and paste menus and create complete events. In our business, that’s called hard core. 

Deirdre, Mmm fries ...

Chef Deirdre, Grand Cru 2009

 Because of Deirdre, L EAT catering and Paese can boast the most money spent on customized serving pieces, cutlery, china, Plexiglas French fry trays, cotton candy machines, light fixtures, and oh yes, a thousand dollar ice cream bucket holder. But you can bet that when we show up for your event you will realize that a finger on the pulse of what’s current and an eye for attention and detail are what set      L EAT Catering apart from everybody else. 

Packing lists for each individual catering function

Shelves downstairs at L EAT full of custom serving pieces

More custom pieces

Carts packed for an event and ready to be shipped

It starts by unloading van after van

Then its unpacking all the plates, cutlery, cups, and wine glasses

Then we build kitchens, anywhere!

unloading the carts of food

Service backstage at One X One 2008, Maple Leaf Gardens.A tomato salad filled with a herbs, seedlings, edible flowers and B.C. spot prawns with a yellow tomato viniagrette. Oh yes for 700 people!

 In catering, nothing scares us. A cocktail party for 400. We ask “when?”, you reply “Tomorrow?”  No problem.  An Indian meets Mexican themed wedding? No problem.  A sit down dinner for 12 people in your home with linens, flowers, two chefs’ , three wait staff, locally sourced produce, allergies to dark meat and rare meat and all on a budget? No problem. 

A tented wedding at a winery, in the fields

Dinner inside the tents

Dinner on Lake Simcoe

At night, Lake Simcoe

South Beach theme, no problem!

Inside South Beach

Morocco in Ontario

The bar, Morocco

Prepping the animals

A childrens tea party

Dinner poolside, another example like the others above of Deirdre's attention to detail

 We turn empty rooms into lounges, warehouses into ballrooms, cottages into African safaris, we build kitchens in garages, unload truck loads of customized equipment, change in closets like supermen into chef whites or black ties,  make some of the smallest food imaginable in some of the biggest quantities possible, work the longest hours humanly thinkable, forgo sleep, proper nutrition, hydration, cram ourselves with the leftovers of whatever we are serving that night only to get up and do it again the next day.


5 Responses to ““To cater is to accommodate””

  1. 1 Marge
    December 5, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    Keep up the good work, Chris. Very interesting.

  2. January 13, 2010 at 2:24 pm

    Tony looking very dapper!
    What a great pic – the outfit is exactly how you described it, Chris;)

  3. May 14, 2013 at 7:37 am

    An impressive share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a friend who has been doing a little homework on this. And he actually bought me dinner due to the fact that I discovered it for him… lol. So let me reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending the time to talk about this subject here on your site.

  4. June 5, 2013 at 9:28 am

    Great blog you have got here.. It’s hard to find good quality writing like yours these days. I honestly appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

  5. June 7, 2013 at 9:23 am

    Great post. I was checking constantly this
    blog and I’m impressed! Very useful info specially the last part 🙂 I care for such information a lot. I was looking for this particular info for a very long time. Thank you and best of luck.

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