Vanilla Orchid Caters Former President and Former First Lady

Vanilla Orchid was honored to serve former president George W. Bush and former first lady Laura Bush last November during a weekend of activities surrounding the Warrior 100k Ride.

W100K Ride

The W100K is a competitive mountain bike ride for United States military personnel seriously wounded or injured since 9/11. As described on the Bush Center website: “The W100K highlights the service, sacrifice, and resilience of our nation’s warriors.”

The event started back in 2011 after former president Bush visited a rehabilitation center for injured service members in San Antonio a few years prior. There Bush met Sgt. Maj. Chris and invited him to Bush’s ranch to go for a bike ride which inspired Bush to start an annual bike ride for warriors.

Bush Biking (Source: TheBushCenter twitter page)
Bush Biking in W100K Ride

In 2019, 17 warriors joined President Bush on the two-day ride. A list of names of the warriors can be viewed on the George W. Bush Presidential Center website here.

A plated dinner was planned before the actual race took place and Vanilla Orchid Catering from Austin, TX was chosen as the full-service catering company entrusted to plan, prepare, and serve George and Laura Bush and guests.

The Phoenix Ballroom Stage
The Phoenix Ballroom Stage at Plated Event for President Bush

The event was held at The Phoenix, an elegant ballroom in Waco, TX. The venue was perfect for an upscale plated dinner. Fittingly, the history of The Phoenix includes previous use as a manufacturing plant used to make tents and tarps during both world wars. The building has since been converted to an event center that Vanilla Orchid looks forward to working in again soon! To learn more about the venue, feel free to view their website at https://www.thephoenixballroom.com/

The Phoenix Ballroom in Waco TX

A Presidential Menu

For the menu, our Director of Food and Beverage and Executive Pastry Chef collaborated directly with the Event Planner to create a custom menu that both matched their vision and wowed their guests.

For Happy Hour, our culinary team put a twist on some of our favorite VO appetizers, that also paired well with the clients vision, including our Pulled Pork Tartlet with Apricot, Brie, & Green Chile Jam, our Pecan Crusted Brie Cheese Bites w/ Fresh Strawberry & Balsamic Glaze, and our famous Bacon Wrapped Dates made with Medjoul Dates, Goat Cheese, and Bacon.

We served the Vanilla orchid Signature Salad with cornbread croutons all served on stunning gold lined dishware.

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Vanilla orchid Signature Salad for Plated Event for President Bush Event

The main course was possibly the best of upscale southern comfort food, namely Fried Chicken marinated in Buttermilk and Dredged with Spiced Flour served with Black Pepper Cream Gravy. Sides included Grilled Corn Succotash and a Baby Vegetable Medley.

For dessert, we served Maple Pumpkin Creme Brulee which of course was fired on-site and served fresh with a layer of newly hardened, warm caramelized sugar.

Regardless of political views or stances, it was an honor for Vanilla Orchid to serve a former President and former First Lady and participate in the honoring of our veterans.