A Catering Career Profile: Caterer of the Year

Jack Milan did not become Catering Magazine's Caterer of the Year 2004 by accident. His catering career began after he had already a successful corporate consultant and then started his own very successful restaurant.

Milan is the owner of Different Tastes Catering in Boston, and his success is unprecedented in the catering industry. For example, Milan has an exclusive 10-year contract as the caterer for the Wang Theater in Boston, something unheard of in the world of catering.

Catering to the Future

A large part of Milan's success as a caterer comes from the fact that he has been able to stay ahead of the competition by looking toward the future and focusing business plans to company growth. His catering career began after his successful restaurant closed its catering division.

He immediately began working high-end events, focusing on black-tie galas and similar corporate events. He credits his success to staying focused on one particular market and excelling within that market. Word quickly spread that Milan's company could handle such upper-tier events and business was booming, and so was his career in catering.

Mix Well: Business and Buffet

Milan's catering career has been augmented by his training in business. Milan has taken time to hone his cooking skills with celebrated chefs and caterers. As a restaurant owner and caterer, Milan had to have a substantial knowledge of the culinary arts.

Catering requires not only a good sense of how things must taste, but how they must look as well. Catering is as much about presentation as it is about flavor. Milan has also taken time out to hone his business skills while pursuing a master's degree in Business Administration.

Clearly, being a successful caterer takes more than great cream puffs. Milan's experience shows that a successful career in catering is a blend of great food and great ideas.