‘Tis the season of holiday dinner parties. Often among the most joyful events of the winter, they can also turn into occasions of great stress.
So, imagine for a moment if you could have a top-tier chef move into your kitchen and handle the whole event for you – from shopping to cooking to presentation and cleanup?
That’s the vision held out by Kitchit, a startup in private beta that is inviting the first 100 7x7 readers who respond (see bottom of this post) to experience hassle-free dinner parties this holiday season with one of the Bay Area’s top chefs -- like Josh Skenes of Saison, Sarah Burchard, Ryan Baker, Nocolas Borzee, Damon Stainbrook, or Ian Mullen, among dozens of others.
Kitchit works like this: You log into its site, browse the chefs’ pre-set holiday options, which range from cocktail parties to family-style parties to Thanksgiving turkey dinner to a Hanukah menu; select your option and date and book the event.
You should expect to pay from $50 per plate and up, depending on how elaborate an event you wish to host. For now, it is only available in the greater Bay Area, with events so far ranging from Santa Cruz to Marin and at least one weekend party in Lake Tahoe.
“The concept behind Kitchit,” says CEO Brendan Marshall, “is based in the idea that when you think back, your happiest times are often those spent with friends and family around the dinner table, like at Thanksgiving or the holidays. We’re trying to make that effortless so you can take all the time you spent in the kitchen and spend it with your friends and family instead.”
Kitchit is not one of those startups trying to scale at any cost. Instead, it is growing slowly and cautiously. “We have more than 50 great chefs waiting to join our service,” says Marshall, “but we want to make sure of the quality of the experience before adding more. Our concern is not in rushing it, but making sure we can deliver.”
So far, the company is getting rave reviews from people that have tested it out.
“We hired Kirsten [Goldberg] for a dinner that we were hosting to meet and get to know a business partner's new girlfriend,” said Hilary, a Kitchit member. “Because I wanted to spend time getting to know the new guest, I didn't want to spend all of my time in the kitchen. Kitchit to the rescue! Kirsten worked with me for several days to come up with a menu that reflected everyone's dining preferences, and she was flexible and accommodating throughout the entire process. Dinner was meticulously prepared, plated beautifully, and tasted beyond delicious. Kirsten never missed a beat!”
If you want to take advantage of Kichit’s special offer for 7x7 readers, here is the password you should use when signing up under the "I have an invitation" button at the site: 7x7SF.