How to be a catering boss…

29 May 2017

Meet Jessica Wood, expert on all things catering-related at The Black Truffle.

Food has featured prominently in Jessica Wood’s life. Born into an Italian family with five siblings, she grew up in the bountiful South-West town of Pemberton and would often find herself side-by-side with her mother and Nonna in the kitchen, surrounded by loved ones and enough food to feed the neighbourhood.

Today, she’s The Black Truffle’s passionate catering manager, a role she relishes for its diversity and opportunity to continue working with fresh, quality produce.


Tell us a little bit about your growth at The Black Truffle.

I started in the deli when there were only two of us working in the section. From there, I developed a real interest in how the business worked, and loved making antipasto platters and the buzz of the shop when we had large catering orders. As the business grew and we took on the space next door with a bigger commercial kitchen, the demands on our catering really took off. We needed a catering manager at that stage and here I am!


What do you love most about your job now?

The whole process, from designing menus to presenting the end product. I love being able to help customers by making the catering process so simple for them.


What would customers be surprised to discover about The Black Truffle’s catering services?

We are very diverse. From finger food to buffet style and grazing tables, the list is endless.


Can you share a BT secret with us? Any good gossip we may not be aware of?

We now have a delivery van! We can now deliver far and wide, which is really exciting for us!


Since you joined TBT, how has the company’s catering offering grown?

Our catering capacity has increased incredibly. With our new commercial kitchen, there isn’t really anything we can’t achieve and now that we can offer delivery, it’s a very exciting time. Custom designed menus are definitely becoming more popular and this is something we really enjoy doing for customers. It ensures they are getting exactly what they want and we ensure that it is to a sensational standard.


What catering jobs do you enjoy the most and why?

Grazing tables are so much fun!  We get to be creative using beautiful products and each table is custom designed – no two are the same! Our grazing tables will include a lovely selection of premium cheeses, freshly cut deli meats, and ALL the accompaniments – artisan olive mix, chargrilled artichokes, semi sundried tomatoes, prosciutto-wrapped grissini sticks, lavosh, fresh baguette selection, homemade garlic crostini. There is something for everyone. Plus, if you required a more substantial spread we can add some of our finger food items like arancini, mini herb rostis, tuna and chive bites and so on.


Who does the BT’s average catering customer tend to be?

This varies. During the week we do a lot of corporate catering and these clients tend to enjoy shared breakfast and lunch platters like fresh fruit, breakfast trifles and gourmet lunch rolls and sandwiches. We can even supply individual lunchboxes for working lunches.

Then our finger food selection is really popular for any social function. Bite-size piece platters include herb potato rostis topped with tomato salsa, three cheese arancini, chicken and thyme sausage rolls – the list is endless. We can also cater for any dietary requirement – our new special dietary menu items include gluten free and vegan beetroot sesame cakes and chicken fetta bites, for example.


How does online catering work? What makes it so convenient?

Who doesn’t love technology – just jump onto and you can view a selection of our platters and picnic hampers. The platter sizes and image are shown, so it is a simple solution for your people who are time poor. If you required any further assistance with quantities or options, just email me and I’m always more than happy to organise a time to catch up over a coffee to chat about your requirements and what we can offer.


If you were stranded on a dessert island, what three foods would you choose to take with you and why?

Hmm… that’s very hard, asking an Italian to limit food choices to three!

  • Antipasto platter – all the best things in one place!
  • My Nonna’s cutlets – I can’t live without them and she always has some ready for me when I go to visit.
  • Does wine count as a food?