Get to know your private chef
Dinner parties are back on the table, spurring a boon for private chefs and catering companies who arrive, food in
hand, to provide a culinary experience you’d never get on your own. Behold two working their magic in the Yampa Valley.
Be it a staycation or local night at home, E Smalley Catering’s Samantha Smalley, born and raised in
Steamboat, rises to the occasion to ease the burden of cooking. “I love cooking, people, and making people
happy through the art of food,” she says. “It’s simple…I do what I love.”
Her company brings fresh, individualized and coursed meals, cooking with as many local products as possible.
Meals range from French-inspired courses to Americana, served family-style, to cutting-edge, coursed-out dishes
showcasing local ingredients and her unique, culinary flair. “I completely cater to the client’s needs, creating a
memorable experience whether it’s a coursed menu for a private dinner or a wedding,” Smalley says.
Her venture allows her to cultivate relationships with private chef clients while also expanding to event catering and party planning. She also hopes to build a commercial kitchen for herself and other entrepreneurs.
Smalley’s background is simple yet enriched with layers of experience, much like her food. She attended the Culinary Institute of America in New York at age 17, then continued her culinary career in restaurants from Brooklyn to Miami and Los Angeles before landing back in her hometown of Steamboat. “I decided to get into the private chef industry and learned I loved the hours, hospitality and creating my own menus,” she says. “I decided to take it to the next level, catering to the needs of the individual.”
The key to be a great chef? “Continuous growth,” she says. “I never stop experimenting in the kitchen and developing new recipes.”