Meet Grazing Events' CGO
(Chief Grazing Officer)
What attracted you to the hospitality and events world?
A combination of a love of food and the desire to please other people…I’m a show off at heart!
How long have you been in the events industry?
If you count the BBQs and parties I used to cater for people in the village I grew up in from about the age of 16 then I’ve been in the events industry for well over 20 years. Hard to believe, particularly given my youthful looks, I know.
What attracted you to Grazing Events?
Well, after opening our first Grazing Café in early 2007, it wasn’t long before we were asked to cater for events. Our very first was a hog roast for 100 staff at Fruit Towers, the Innocent head offices in W10. I remember it being a scorcher of a day and it must have been 100+ degrees over the hog roast but we got it done, got great sun tans and the team at Innocent were over the moon with their lunch. They loved it so much, they asked us back again to cater their Christmas party that year….and so Grazing Events was born.
Do you have a favourite venue to work in?
Ur, wouldn’t that be a bit like picking a favourite child?! There are way too many great event spaces in London to pick a favourite but I do love The View of the Shard for the awesome view across London town.
Fun fact about Sam
He can’t stand sparkling mineral water – he hates it more than tequila. And he really hates tequila!
What has been your favourite event to be involved with?
As a student, earning a few extra quid to pay my way through uni by working as a waiter for various event companies, I once worked at a lavish 40th birthday bash in Cap Ferrat, where Stevie Wonder played a live set in the back yard of this guy’s house. That was a pretty cool event.
What are you looking forward to over the next year with Grazing Events?
Finding a client who wants us to book Stevie Wonder to play at their next event. Failing that, putting on some pretty cool events in some of London’s amazing event spaces as well as transforming our client offices into great event spaces. I’m pretty excited about the food that we’re starting to see come out of our brand new kitchens too and I’m pretty sure 2017 is going to see a lot more show stopping dishes created and served at our events.
Where are your favourite places to eat in London?
That’s an even harder questions than the favourite venue one as I’ve been lucky enough to have countless amazing meals in London. For lunch and proper retro decadence, I think you’d be hard pressed to find a better deal than lunch at Le Gavroche. I’ve been there a handful of times of the last 18 years in London and it’s always faultless.
For something more modern, I love grazing, no pun intended, the array of street food on offer all over town. For the best curry in town, it’s got to be my local take-away, the Holy Cow in SW18.
What you would pick as your last meal?
Probably an all you can eat buffet in Las Vegas…the last one I had nearly killed me and I suspect another one might send me over the edge once and for all.
Where do you see Grazing Events in five years’ time?
I’d like us to be five times bigger than we are today and wowing five times as many people with our exceptional food and service. The more happy customers we get to share our food with, the happier I am!