|07-27-2007, 01:54 AM||#1|
It is what it Is.
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: in a bunker
go ahead and ruin this with your damn food posts
Catering to the Team's Culinary Needs
Broncos wide receiver Brandon Stokley grabs lunch in the cafeteria. PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER SMITH / DENVERBRONCOS.COM
NOW IN PRINT
Be sure to check newsstands for the current copy of Broncos Magazine featuring a cover story on two new Broncos -- tight end Daniel Graham and running back Travis Henry.
IDEAS AND SUGGESTIONS?
Have an idea for an upcoming issue of Broncos Magazine or want to tell us why you're the No. 1 citizen in Broncos Country? Email us at email@example.com
Check out the past 10 editions of Broncos Magazine Weekly:
5/10: Hitting the Links
5/17: Demetrin Veal: Travelin' Man
5/24: United Front
5/31: Heading Upstairs
6/7: 'It's Cool to be Lame'
6/14: Taking it Inside
6/21: A Lasting Legacy
6/28: Summer on the Gridiron
7/5: Ticket Frenzy
7/12: Comfort Zone
7/19: Film Study 101
By Christopher Smith
Broncos Magazine Staff Writer
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- If you're planning to cook the Broncos a meal anytime soon, lay off the casserole. They don't like it.
Ask the team's caterer, Avie Rosacci of Tony Rosacci's Fine Catering. Rosacci is an expert on the Broncos' training camp diet after feeding Denver for four years. She'll tell you exactly what, and exactly how much, the team eats.
The Broncos will digest roughly 10,000 pounds of food this training camp, or 1,250 pounds per day.
It's hard to say how much of that is for the players. The Broncos tell Rosacci how many others will eat at each sitting. Coaches, executive staff, media and sometimes marketing guests also partake in the buffet. Rosacci does calculate a larger portion size for the players.
"For a buffet, we figure around 16 ounces for a normal-sized person. We have to figure 28-32 ounces of food per player," Rosacci said. "I mean, I can't burn off that much food. Can you?"
Scratch the butter from your dinner plans as well. Don’t be surprised to find your favorite Bronco looking at nutrition labels and reaching for boxes with low-fat scrawled on the label.
"Most of them are really health-conscious," Rosacci said. "We don't cook things with butter. If they want to have butter and cheese, we have to make sure they can add it. We try not to assume everybody eats a fatty, heavier diet, although some of the guys do."
The first year taught Rosacci the intricacies of an NFL diet, some of which caught her off guard. She made sure to keep a record on every meal and has spent the past few years fine-tuning the menu.
"If (vice president of operations Chip Conway) sees anything that he wants to change, they let me know, but it's very rare now," Rosacci said. "The first year we had to change a lot until they trained me. Now they've got me all broken in, so I pretty much know what the guys will eat, what they won’t eat and what they’re going to yell at me for."
Although that may sound intimidating, Rosacci and the chefs said they thoroughly enjoy Dove Valley's work environment. The team's acceptance and interaction makes them feel welcome and important.
Bearing large plates of high-end beef and chicken can’t hurt, either. In fact, despite the aversion to casseroles, the Broncos' taste buds do not discriminate often.
"They love barbeque, whether it's chicken or beef or ribs or brisket. The barbeque goes over very well. Anything on the grill. They certainly do eat their fair share of protein. Macaroni and cheese is one of their favorites. Sweet chili chicken skewers are another one. We do a lot of burrito wraps similar to the ones at Chipotle. Hamburgers are real popular with the guys, french fries -- they love their potatoes. Anything potato goes over real well over there," Rosacci said.
Conway said the organization has been pleased with the food.
"You're talking about 90 players. You can't keep everyone happy. But the majority? Yes."
Rosacci challenged herself to find fresh menu items this offseason. Every Friday for three months, Rosacci's Fine Catering held Broncos tasting.
"We have to of course throw new ideas into it, come up with innovative ideas, because we don't want them to get bored. We have an entrée, a vegetable, and then we all decide, 'Will the Broncos eat this?' If we decide they will as a group, we’ll test it on the Broncos and see how well it does," Rosacci said.
"We get the chefs' inputs because they know what the Broncos will eat. They won't eat gourmet food. They just don't eat those fancy things. They don't want anything fancy for dessert. They want a cookie."
That's the attention to detail that makes Tony Rosacci's Fine Catering pleasant to work with, Conway said.
"We made a switch from our previous caterer three weeks prior to camp the first year. Ever since then, it's been smooth sailing," he said. "They're great to work with because they're as meticulous as I am. We're usually thinking about the same things. We end up calling each other about the same thing at the same time all the time."
Avie Rosacci and the chefs will serve breakfast, lunch, dinner and a late snack most every day during camp. The litmus test is being able to find something that pleases the diversified tastes represented in the cafeteria.
"I make sure I don’t give them chicken too much or potatoes too much or pork too much, because we have a lot of different tastes from all over the United States and all over the world that we have to please," Rosacci said.
Tony Rosacci's Fine Catering earned their most famous patrons by outbidding another well-established caterer. They now cater to several well-known corporations and athletes in the area.
By outbidding their competition, Tony Rosacci’s got more than a client. Their connection to Denver's favorite sports franchise has been a boon to business, she said.
"Our catering company offered a superior starter product and a better price than our competition," Rosacci said. "The Broncos are definitely a badge we wear with pride. We have to do bid work over here. We bid against our competition. Everything’s done by contract. When we need to push over the edge, it certainly doesn't hurt to mention, 'Oh, by the way, we cater for the Broncos.'"