La Bonne Bouffe Catering

The story of Casselman’s La Bonne Bouffe Catering is first and foremost a tale of love; love of good food, good company and of the community.

Undoubtedly one of the area’s gastronomic imperatives, the legendary caterer’s food is just like its service: impeccable and smile-inducing.

The story of how it all came to be is both humble and authentic.

“It took off during the 1998 ice storm,” said owner and professional chef Denis Savage.

“I didn’t even have a name for it yet… But one skill I did have was the ability to adapt very quickly. So, when the ice storm came to Casselman, I started cooking for everyone - about 600 people - sheltered at the high school.”

Such a gesture didn’t go unnoticed, and in the tightly-knit franco-ontarien community, news of it travelled far.

Not long after, Savage was given the opportunity to be the caterer for Jeux franco-ontariens, the biggest annual gathering of francophone youth in Ontario. 2018 marks the 20th time Savage cooks for the games, no matter where they are held.

Cooking up success

Nowadays, La Bonne Bouffe Catering’s team continues to grow.

“Our team numbers at 26 now, when including service. We can easily be 11 or 12 in the kitchen sometimes.”

Even though one of his specialties is meat (including traditional méchoui barbecues), Savage runs a very versatile and creative kitchen.

“we can prepare pretty much anything. We have a wide selection of stuffed chicken. I also love experimenting with fresh spices and when people want to try out something new, they’re invited to a tasting at the chef’s table.”

Savage’s clientele is as varied as it is scattered, with recurring contracts with local schools, large annual gatherings, francophone associations and, of course, weddings.

“As I said, I adapt quickly and I’m equipped to do just that. Sometimes we have four weddings in one day. It can get intense, but it’s all about planning. We have a six-wedding day coming up and it doesn’t worry me at all.”

A trained chef, Savage is a firm believer in volunteering and helping those in need, being a fan of new and exciting experiences. And, if that wasn’t challenging enough, Savage also prides himself on buying local.

“We buy local produce. In the summer, everything is locally grown. I even asked a local producer to grow a special type of potato I want to serve at weddings this summer. Weddings are expensive, so when I bring you your food, I want you to be impressed.”

Indeed, everything about La Bonne Bouffe Catering is quite impressive. It’s also easy to see why Savage and his team are based in the heart of francophone Ontario (many of their clients being key players within the community), even though they serve food from Rigaud to Thunder Bay.

From the farm to your fork

This amazing event, mastered by La Bonne Bouffe Catering, Experience Food, in partnership with the Eastern Ontario Agri-Food Network, hosted at a secret location, is held once a year, this year will be in July. Summer 2018 will mark the third edition.

“Once a year, we approach local producers for their product and choose a ‘secret’ farm. We then pick up those who signed up by bus and bring them to the secret venue for an authentic, local experience,” explained Savage.

The event is quite a treat for those who love good food and surprises. For instance, one of the past events was held at a farm known for its cider.

The event can seat 200. Those interested can contact La Bonne Bouffe Catering through their website (traiteurlabonnebouffe.com) or Facebook page (@TraiteurLaBonneBouffeCatering).
Team members at work in La Bonne Bouffe Catering kitchen
http://www.prescott-russell.on.ca/affaires/developpement_economique/histoire___succ_s/traiteur_la_bonne_bouffe