Our story started with you.
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I believe it is through the selfless act of giving and not wanting anything in return that we can find true happiness. Homemade almond & orange dark chocolate also helps. Let me know if you want my recipe.
Our Story Started With You. Having completed a degree in Catering and Hotel Management in 1987. Like many young Australians fresh from Uni, I then took off overseas and put my degree to use before returning to Australia to set up a café on Lonsdale St in 1991. During the recession of 1992 all the building close by to my café went from full, to empty.
The café sales more than halved, so in order to survive I needed to take my food to the rest of the CBD through corporate catering.
Victorians (along with my chef) were leaving en-masse to Queensland to live. At this stage I couldn’t afford to replace the chef so I took on this role myself. Times were tough, so I did the cooking, took all the catering orders by phone (no email and no internet then) and delivered them as well. I did this by myself for 5 years until I could afford a second vehicle and driver to help.
Talking to customers everyday allowed me to get constant feedback and make continuous improvements to the business. This is when we started to do same day orders and delivering hot food hot. Thanks to your feedback the menu selection continued to improve.
The business grew and grew until we outgrew the café. During these early years I had met Elizabeth (Liz) and in 1995 (I think?) we married. In 1997 we opened a purpose-built catering facility on King St and became Melbourne’s only 100% corporate catering specialist and renamed the business from “Hannigan’s Sandwich Factory” to “Elizabeth Andrews Corporate Catering” (my Mum came up with the name).
Around this time, we were able to employ specialist chefs who were real foodies. This made a huge difference to the presentation and quality of the catering and it took only four years to outgrow the premises before we had to move again in 2001.
Over the next few years, Liz and I had three children and decided to take a break from the business and join the rest of Victoria by moving to Queensland for a few years. We employed a General Manager to manage the business. We realised after a few years that it’s hard to replace skin in the game as the sales started to decline.
In 2013 I met Duncan Scudamore who is a friend of my brother. Duncan has a degree in Commerce and a wealth of catering experience having spent more than 10 years with two of the world’s largest caterers including Sodexo and The Compass Group. Duncan bought 50% of the business and also became the general manager from 2013 to 2018. Having a GM with some skin in the game meant the sales started to grow again (he is also a great photographer and takes all the photos for our menu).
The business has gone from 2 orders a day with one Ford Falcon station wagon in 1991 to over 100 orders a day and 14 refrigerated delivery vans. We’re still located in the city and we still specialize solely in corporate catering to ensure we meet all your specific needs.
In 2019 Andre Rasquinha started as the General Manager allowing Duncan and me to work on developing the business along with Andre, our customers and our team.
One of the most exciting chapters in our history involved building a new catering facility from the ground up in Rosslyn St, Melbourne. This is a state-of-the-art sustainable facility, that allows us to continually improve our services to you. We moved in in March this year (2020).
I want to thank our team of 65 foodies who have made this business what it is and to you our customer who we have had the pleasure of serving for the past 29 years. It is through the act of serving others and contributing towards society that makes us all happy little vegemite (sandwiches).
Andre and Duncan go way back – all the way to the last century when they both started work with Gardner Merchant (which morphed into Sodexo). Andre qualified as a chef in the late 80’s and coupled his chef qualification with a Masters in Hospitality Management which he put to good use during his time with Sodexo. After a 10 year hiatus away from hospitality in which time he focussed on travel and tourism, Andre has returned to hospitality as the General Manager of Elizabeth Andrews.
Travis loves Collingwood - but we don’t hold that against him! He’s a fantastic chef and an amazing organiser. For over 7 years he has lead his team of kitchen staff in such a way that nothing is left to chance. All too often, kitchen environments can be a real pressure cooker (excuse the pun) so it’s great that Travis has a level headedness to him that results in things getting done at the right time, in the right way and consistently. It’s an added bonus that he’s up to speed with the latest in food trends and can sit down and write sensational menus at the drop of a hat.
Robbie started in the kitchen at Elizabeth Andrews at the turn of the century. He was tempted to stay in the kitchen and considered an apprenticeship before he decided that logistics was where it was all at! He now manages a team of 14+ drivers, a fleet of modern refrigerated vehicles and all the equipment and planning that goes with the complexities of running a smooth despatch department. Everyone at Elizabeth Andrews is convinced Robbie has a GPS embedded within his brain! And it certainly helps to know that after 20 years working with us, your on time deliveries are safe with him.
You can always tell which desk is Laura’s – it’s the tidiest! When it comes to dotting the “i’s” and crossing the “T’s” for your next event, Laura’s all over it. After 7 years with us, She knows the Elizabeth Andrews menu back to front and has an innate ability to match the outcomes of your event to the venue, the equipment, the run sheet and the staffing requirements of your event.
Carolina is in charge of zhuzhing up menus, themes, events and functions so they really hit the spot. She is the single point of contact for our iconic venues (including the Melbourne Recital Centre) and as such, is able to work one-on-one with the venue and the event organisers.
When it comes to staying on top of the company finances, Jane’s all over it. Jane manages multiple software admin tools including payroll, accounts payable and receivable, bank reconciliation and supplier payments. In her spare time, she plays hockey for Australia and raises two delightful children.
Deb heads up our pastry and bakery section with such flare and technical expertise that it’s a delight to walk into the kitchen when her team’s at work. There’s always something new and innovative happening which is great for the business, but lousy for our waistlines!
Manages a team of up to 15 “sandwichistas” who lovingly and painstakingly make your sandwiches fresh on the day you eat them. A self-confessed “early starter” Irma often opens the doors in the morning around 4.30am and starts her day by baking the rolls and and baguettes fresh so they can cool enough for the production team. After 13 years working in many departments at Elizabeth Andrews it is nice to know you have a skilful and qualified chef leading the sandwich team.
Ann’s a fixture at Elizabeth Andrews (25 years). Ann is one of the original staff and has moved with us from Hannigan’s Sandwich Factory right the way through to where we are now at 96 Rosslyn St. Ann started with us straight from school and has since qualified as a chef, got married and has teenage children. How time flies! She knows every section of the kitchen intimately and even runs payroll and accounts payable/receivable when Jane’s away on leave or the children are playing up! What’s great about Ann is that she’s not only super-efficient, she’s always got a big smile on her face!
Monica lives, breaths and eats creativity. She’s absolutely all over the latest food trends. She also looks after our recipe database “resort restaurant”. This high-tech piece of software enables us to manage dietaries, allergens, consistency, costings and menu development. Monica steps into the breach if Trav’s at the footy and manages the team equally well.
When it comes to a crisis, Felicity in customer service has got your back! We understand that sometimes catering requests are thrust upon you at a moments’ notice and Felicity knows immediately what’s possible and what’s not. Felicity’s level headed and practical approach means that things get done – immediately, with a smile and reliably. You can’t ask for more!
It’s always a neck and neck race between Tiffany and Laura as to who's the most organised in the office. Tiffany is one of those delightful “nothings-too-much-trouble” voices at the end of the phone when you call in to place a frantic last-minute order. Tiffany worked in the sandwich section for a couple of years before moving into customer service and as such she knows the menu back to front.
In March 2020 we moved into a new facility at 96 Rosslyn St, a stone’s throw from Flagstaff Gardens. We’ve built this 800m² central production kitchen and offices from the ground up with the latest in fancy food tech. You are welcome to come visit us and have a tour.
(kitchen image) Everything is designed around corporate catering, both office drop-off catering and event catering. Food safety is our number one priority and number two is our passion for getting the most delectable yummy food to you so you can add some fun and interest to your work day.
(multiple images of staff and food in different sections of the kitchen) Rather than buy food in and repackage it to you, we provide you with unique, fresh and high quality food. To do this we have our own specialist chefs in sushi, pastry, baking, hot and cold lunch savouries, buffets and plated meals, canapes, cheese and fruit and even our sandwich bar is managed by two chefs who have worked with us for a combined 35 years.
(Image of Closed Loop Composter) Something else that is close to our heart here at Rosslyn St is our environmental credentials. We are constantly looking at our carbon footprint and have many projects under way. Food is the largest single source of waste in Australia. Our commercial food composter converts food waste to soil and then we use the soil in our on site herb gardens.
(Image of the Vario Cooker) This is one of our new toys, the latest in food technology, it is a computerised frypan/pot/grill/boiler/deepfry/pressure-cooker all in one. It can be programmed to cook identically every time, with water in and waste out, it tips and has a pressure lid. Just select what you want to cook and away it goes.
(image of the office with staff) When you call you can talk to Felicity or Tiffany for your office catering needs and Laura or Carolina for your event catering needs.
(Image of the loading dock with vans) We are located close to you and with 14 delivery vans. We are able to help out whenever you need us, including those last minute same day orders.
You are welcome to come over to Rosslyn St and have a tour of our facilities. We hope to see you soon.