To understand how Montana Catering evolved, first you have to visit 131 Victoria St in Hamilton, back in November 1965 when it was a classic Kiwi grillroom. Going out for dinner was a special treat back then and ordering a steak supper meant parting with a princely sum of 5 shillings. Soup, for diners adventurous enough to order an entrée, left them 1 and 6 poorer.
The business began to diversify in 1988. The iconic restaurant was already catering to the coffee shop crowd when it started to focus on the catering side of the restaurant trade. From small beginnings – sandwiches and cakes for workplace lunches – a robust catering business quickly grew. And while the growth of corporate hospitality catering meant business was booming… space was at a premium in the Montana kitchen.
The answer was to start looking for other premises. From early on, Montana Catering Director and Owner/Operator Peter Stark and Director Dallas Fisher had their sights on the FMG Stadium Waikato. The concept of a multi-room, multi-function venue appealed, as did the idea of purpose-built, state-of-the art kitchens.
This dream became a reality when the company successfully tendered for the contract to fulfil the catering requirements for the stadium. Peter Stark called on his 22 years of experience with Montana Catering to become involved at every step in the specifications and design for the kitchens. It was a vision that took two years to realise but in February 2002 Montana Catering proudly became the largest high tech caterer in the Waikato and the exclusive provider of food and beverages at the FMG Stadium Waikato.
The Directors were joined by Chef Troy Reid who rounded out the team and embraced the Executive Chef position. Together the leadership of the trio have seen the evolution of Montana Catering though A1GPs, Hamilton V8s, RWC2011 matches, 850 guest gala dinners and exhibitions attended by over 10000 patrons daily while still leading with motivation and support for the large Montana Catering team.
Montana Catering is forever evolving and expanding, in May 2011 we moved our head office from a cramped office at the back of our loading bay at the FMG Stadium Waikato to the new Claudelands Event Centre above the Exhibition Halls.
We split our kitchen, front of house and operations teams in two and now have two large multifaceted divisions under the Montana Catering umbrella
What will be next…