Caterer True-ly loves parties

Former commercial real estate broker John Trueman says selling food sure beats selling real estate.

Trueman’s namesake Winnetka grab-and-go prepared-food store and catering company is celebrating its three-year anniversary.

“Selling food is much easier than selling real estate,” said Trueman, who chalks up his success to networking, word of mouth and repeat business.

“Having come from real estate, networking was easy,” said Trueman, a Winnetka father of four, who holds an economics degree from Boston College and an MBA from Northwestern. “I think people initially hired me because they knew me, but when they started hiring me again and again, I knew they liked the food and the service.”

With his staff of chefs, bartenders and servers, who Trueman described as “engaging, high energy people who really like the party atmosphere,” Trueman caters corporate and social events of all sizes for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The company’s niche: residential cocktail parties on the North Shore.

“I almost feel like I’m the host,” said Trueman, who explained he tries to attend as many parties as he can. “I’ve always loved to entertain, and I feel like that’s evident in my work.”

“John is great for cocktail parties with heavy appetizers,” said Katie Palmer of Winnetka, who estimated she and her husband, John have hired Trueman for a dozen parties at their home — both large and small. “He really understands how to make the party work, with everything from the placement of the bar to the number of servers you need, the flow of the party and of course, the food.”

Palmer said the dishes are always a hit, and quantity is never an issue.

“He comes up with food ideas that he knows people will like,” she said. “Reuben sandwiches, sliders, and other things that please everyone’s tastes.”

The youngest of four children, Trueman said as a child, he “hung out” in the kitchen with his mom, which is where he learned to cook and where he also developed an interest in food, parties and entertainment.

When the economy and the real estate market changed a few years ago, Trueman said he felt like the timing was good to create a business he knew he’d enjoy.

Prepared by professional chefs, Trueman, with its retail location on Elm Street, serves four ready-made meals that change weekly as well as a variety of appetizers, salads, side dishes and desserts.

“People are busy,” Trueman said. “There’s carpooling and sports and activities and jobs, and parents don’t have the time to cook every night. We offer healthy, fresh, delicious meals.”

Menu items include pan seared salmon with Asian glaze, chicken scaloppini in a vesuvio sauce, pork loin with apple cranberry compote and pulled BBQ pork with panko crusted mac-n-cheese. The store also carries a large selection of side dishes, such as orzo pilaf, vegetable couscous and grilled vegetables.

“If you have friends who you want to help out, who are having a hard time or who have had a loss in their family — a lot of people pick up food for those occasions,” Palmer said. “If you have a party, it’s guaranteed that John will give it a really personal touch. He’ll be walking around filling people’s wine glasses.”

Trueman 745 Elm Street (847) 386-6240 truemancatering.com

0 Comments

Do you have the scariest house on the block? Or the cutest kid in costume? Share your Halloween photos with us! Click here to submit them.


Modal