Jamie and I met at uni and have always shared a passion for great food. Before we met, we had each worked in kitchens, bars, silver service catering, general customer service and hospitality. Happily, by the time we were spending our first summer together, we had combined our love for food with our love for festivals to work with a variety of festival food traders. From then on, the long summers of student-hood were spent touring the festival scene of the UK and further, sampling all delights, culinary and otherwise. Jamie's brother Tom (a chef with a yearning to reignite his passion for food) joined us along the way and sometimes we would all chat late into the night about how we might bring our own stamp to festival food. As a little team, we flirted with the notion that we could do something truly unique to tick all the boxes with an amazing menu, a unique look, the right ethos, great service, honest prices and just the right amount of fun. This idea nibbled away at us all and when we each found ourselves in the perfect place at the perfect time we decided to embrace the ‘What If’ and create Vudu Food from the ideas now deep-rooted within us.
With our combined wealth of experience across the catering, hospitality and customer service industries and with ample experience being customers ourselves, we are in the perfect position to understand what you want from your event. We built Vudu Food with customer experience at the absolute heart and everything we do strives to make your experience the beginning, middle and end to our story. When it comes to organising your private hire catering, we don't just hit you with a bunch of set menus and fixed options for you to choose from. We work with you to design the perfect day, giving suggestions when needed and being flexible to your needs always. We have some tried-and-tested menus with some tried-and-tested flavour combinations, but the Vudu chefs are always chomping at the bit to let their creative juices flow and design a personal menu that fits with the theme of your day. Our pride and joy is our four-and-a-half-meter-long barbecue smoker and we love being able to really open her up. In the past we have barbecued lobsters for a summer wedding; we've smoked the brisket from a farmer's very own cow for his birthday party (don't worry, he did ask us to) and we've smoked the lambs from the mother-of-the-bride's farm for a beautiful spring wedding. We love using our smoker, but our passion is food in general- If you don't want meat or any other animal products, we got you covered too. Creole cooking is very flexible- Cajun flavours lend themselves beautifully to almost unlimited possibilities.
In the beginning our goal was to create something simple, yet bold and adventurous. Cooking with fire is a very primal experience and something we were naturally drawn to when considering our menu. It is the oldest and purest way of cooking, yet the Creole style keeps it as exciting today as it has ever been. There are many cultures that cook with smoke and flame, but it seems the Creole way holds a residual vibrance that is just so tempting. Creole culture was born in Belize in Central America, when African slaves were brought over by the Dutch, the French and the British. All these cultures collided and eventually merged together to create the Creole people. Today Creole people almost entirely make up Belize, as well as having a stronghold in Louisiana. Food is such a massive part of any culture, and especially for Creole people in Louisiana as it is an expression of their history and individuality within the USA. It is simple, yet creative. And bold yet comforting. This style of cooking allows us to experiment with smoking meats in our smoker and grilling on our barbecue. It represents healthy, home-cooked food with tonnes of flavour. Voodoo also came over with the African slaves and over the years it too morphed into its own Creole-style, made famous by iconography to come out of central America and the Deep South of North America. And so the name Vudu Food felt like a natural leap. Vudu Food represents our take on the Creole style, mixed in with a bit of flare from the Deep South of the USA, as well as a little British twist.
At its heart, Vudu Food is about cooking up good food and serving it at honest prices from happy people. We are hippies at heart and so while we cook with meat, we try and make sure it is always sourced responsibly, from local, independent farms. When we caster festivals and events further afield than the south east of England (where we use our own supplier), we track down abetoirs, farm shops and butchers local to the event, in an attempt to reduce CO2 emissions from food miles. All our serving dishes are compostable and made from recycled materials and we only ever use wooden cutlery (or washable, metal cutlery).