In 2017 Founder Evelyn Isaia and Partner / Chef de Cuisine Cathy Brower embarked on a journey that combined their professional backgrounds and passions and wrapped them all up into a company that would not only serve a discerning clientele, but that could offer women who were less privileged than themselves an outlet and a teaching platform from which to blossom into accomplished women in their own right.
“Training women from all backgrounds is what we live for,” beams Evelyn, a former private wealth manager of over 30 years who is now a partner with Social Venture Partners Connecticut, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Women's Business Development Council of Connecticut, “We are providing opportunities to people by sourcing our staff from trade schools, community colleges, and nonprofit organizations focused on workforce development.”
Cathy, who studied at the Culinary Institute in Florence and specializes in Italian and Mediterranean cooking, as well as the pastry arts, went the culinary route after 30 years of being in the publishing business for the likes of the New York Times and Success Magazine, “These wonderful women who we have the privilege of working with come from all backgrounds and skill levels. It’s thrilling to see women returning to work with a passion for cooking, refugees and immigrants who share their culture and their recipes, chefs in training, and others who share a love for the culinary arts and entertaining.”
The training ground under the tutelage of these dynamic entrepreneurs encompasses both front and back of the house disciplines. From proper service and etiquette, and setting a room and a table, to safe serve kitchen guidelines, mise en place, cooking techniques, and creative plating; all of these skill sets can be applied to work and life, instilling a strong work ethic and building self-esteem.
A catered event produced by Ratatouille and Company is imaginative, flavorful, visual, and choreographed to a tee. Menus feature vibrant and seasonally inspired dishes, including stunning hors d’oeuvres; beef tenderloin sliders with blue cheese mousse; tuna/salmon tartare with sesame dressing in mini seaweed cones; porcini and truffle pizzettas; and shawarma bites with garlic infused sauce and pomegranate. Elegant dinner parties are made special with such favorites as; Thaimee Tasting Menu (Thai) of a spicy and sour Tom Yum soup, curry dishes, baked salmon in banana leaves, and coconut goat cheese cheesecake; Diner D’Automne menu of Pate de Campagne, creamy leek and potato soup, beef Wellington, and moelleux au chocolat; as well as a fabulous Tuscan theme menu featuring arugula with shaved Brussels sprouts and pecorino, homemade spaghetti al limone with seared scallops, bistecca Fiorentina with fresh herb sauce and wilted spinach; and pear crostata with rosemary cream.
Proving that great things can happen when people come together over food, Ratatouille and Company are on a path to creating wonderful memories for their guests and bright futures for their staff.