Quick Last Minute Picks for Catering Your Holiday Party


December 12, 2014
By Alicynn Fink
By Alicynn Fink

Let’s face it, the holidays are stressful. Between navigating mall parking lots and avoiding taboo subjects at family gatherings, by the time January rolls around it’s possible your year-old bottle of antacids is mysteriously gone.

Holiday parties don’t have to be an item adding to the heartburn of the holidays – especially when Tucson is packed with great catering companies.

Here are a few local caterers to help cruise into the New Year with serenity and smiles.

Carte Blanche Catering

Tel: (520) 628-8533

carte blanche

Tucked away on the grounds of the Tucson Museum of Art is Café a la Carte. For over 22 years the adorable café has offered a Mediterranean focused menu, a full service bakery and fresh, locally sourced ingredients wherever possible. The draw of the café sparked the need for offsite catering through Carte Blanche. Whether it’s a small meeting or a large holiday party, Carte Blanche can create an event tailored to it’s needs.

“We have a menu that is linked to our website but I like to sit down with our client, learn about them and find a menu that fits them. I also like to try something new, it allows our staff to grow and keeps things interesting,” said owner Mark Jorbin.

Carte Blanche requests at least 24 hour notice for small events and at least a week for anything over 100 people.

Sapphire Catering

Tel: (520) 622-8343

Sapphire Catering

Parties come in all sizes and so do catering companies. For events that call for wait staff, give Sapphire Catering a ring. With a benchmark of around 50 people they provide full service catering and can coordinate décor with other local vendors. “Sapphire is a gemstone of service excellence. We try to provide great customer service and great food and make it financially approachable for our clients,” said owner Kim Kammann-Lamb. Their menu focuses on healthy options garnering the attention of the Dodgers, White Sox and Giants during spring training and making holiday parties a little more waist friendly.

Sapphire Catering prefers at least a week notice but the bigger and more intricate events will require more time.

Blue Banjo

Tel: (520) 444-3160

Blue Banjo

Attend the 4th Ave Street Fair or Festival of Books for an opportunity to try the Santa Maria Tri Tips from Blue Banjo. Like Mickey Mouse following his nose to pie, the fragrance of grilled meat carries you to the brightly colored tent. Can’t attend those events? Have no fear, they cater. “We call it BBQ but we are really just grillers. Asian, Southwestern, Mexican whatever you want we can create a great event for you” said owner April Ott. Blue Banjo has catered for a variety of weddings and corporate functions and even landed the NFL owners party at the Super Bowl in Phoenix in 2008.

Blue Banjo has requests 4 days’ notice for an event.

Gallery of Foods

Tel: (520) 884-5033

cafe botanica

Café Botanica at the Tucson Botanical Garden may be new but the catering company behind it isn’t. Gallery of Foods has been around for 25 years which equates to more than 5,000 different menus. Focusing on the client, owner Kristine Jensen creates one of kind menus utilizing her organic pantry. “We make almost everything from scratch and we can make almost anything. If you have a special request, we can make it,” said Kristine Jensen.

Gallery of Foods requests as much notice as they can get but are willing to turn on a dime if they are available. 

Don’t Forget: Your Favorite Tucson Restaurant

Many area restaurants provide catering services. Some already have menus on their website while others see the holiday season as a way to support their loyal constituent base and make a few extra dollars. Have a beloved restaurant? Ask a manager about catering. Here are just a few that can whip something together:

  • Blu a Wine and Cheese Stop
  • Dakota Café
  • Delectables Restaurant and Catering
  • El Molinito
  • Feast
  • La Parrilla Suiza
  • Mama’s Hawaiian Bar-b-cue
  • Renee’s Organic Oven
  • Zona 78

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