Birchtree Catering is a small, female-owned company that focuses on local, seasonal ingredients and custom menus cooked fresh for weddings and events in and around Philadelphia, PA, including New Jersey and Delaware. We offer full service catering, including waitstaff, bartenders, rental items, day-of coordination and planning tools to make sure your event is seamless.

Our mission is to improve our local economy by sourcing locally, acting sustainably, and creating jobs within the Philadelphia region. We source from farms and markets that provide the best ingredients in our area, giving us the creative freedom to work with what’s seasonally available, and absolutely delicious. We prefer to work with small, local vendors for everything that we do, helping to create a demand for good quality products for us and our clients. Our waste is composted and recycled in our kitchen and at events, and we choose sustainable options within our company whenever feasible.

Birchtree began slowly in 2008, as owners Rasa Stirbys Benefico and Allegra Derengowski built their brand by using rentals kitchens, hosting tastings in their homes, and growing relationships with vendors and farmers. Their talent, determination and unflinching dedication has brought them to the top of their field, catering high-quality events all over the region.

Today, Birchtree has a beautiful commercial kitchen located inside Globe Dye Works, an old dye factory in Frankford, Philadelphia that now houses small businesses and artist spaces. We remain a small business with a dedicated staff, limited events per weekend, and a strong commitment to every client.

Our team was honored to win 2015’s “Best of Philly” for Party Food and has spent over one year on Yelp.com’s “Best of Event Planning and Services” list. Our food quality standards have been recognized by the Sustainable Business Network of Philadelphia, The Chamber of Commerce, The Knot Magazine and Philadelphia Wedding Magazine. To learn more about us, read our wonderful online reviews and visit one of our regular Supper Clubs, open to the public!

Where we source:

  • Green Meadow Farm
  • Germantown Kitchen Garden
  • Valley Shepherd Creamery
  • Weaver’s Orchard
  • The Gehman Family Farm
  • Sunny Harvest Farms
  • Mother Earth Organics
  • Pequea Valley Farms
  • Sandy Ridge Farms
  • Samuels and Sons Seafood
  • Common Market
  • FarmArt
  • The wonderful vendors inside Reading Terminal Market
Our Team
Rasa Stirbys Benefico Owner, Chef
Rasa approaches her professional menu writing and cooking with the same energy and care that she put into catering her own wedding. She appreciates the opportunity to work closely with her clients and loves the challenge of creating customized dishes and menus. Everything on the Birchtree menus are a result of Rasa's careful testing and tweaking of her own original recipes, and she has become a leader in the local food movement and wedding menu trends, with regular contributions to Martha Stewart Weddings, Green Wedding Shoes, and 100 Layer Cake.
Allegra Derengowski Owner, Marketing and Development
A self-taught planner and entrepreneur, Allegra focuses on sales, marketing and development for Birchtree. She serves as a board member for the Sustainable Business Network of Philadelphia and belongs to the Frankford Business and Professional Association. In 2016 she participated in two programs: Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, and The Enterprise Center's Scale-Up, where she now serves as an advisory board member. The company's growth has positioned them as industry leaders in Philadelphia, with a reputation for the highest quality food and service at weddings and events.
Joseph Topper Head Chef
Joe joined the Birchtree family in 2013, sharing Birchtree’s passion for sustainability and local sourcing. He adds his own culinary expertise as a seasoned catering chef of over 20 years, and his knowledge of technique in large-scale cooking has helped Birchtree deliver exceptional quality for any type of event. He's inspired by using quality local ingredients to create dishes that speak for themselves. He believes that the ingredients, paired with proper technique, produce flavors and experiences to remember.
Nicole Hutnyk Wedding Sales Manager
Nicole's experience in brand development and event planning has led to a perfect collaboration with Birchtree Catering. With an MBA in International Business from Philadelphia University, and through her passion for event planning (she owns the up-and-coming company Rabbit Rabbit Crew!), she brings detailed execution to each event, making sure that each couple's vision comes to life.
Sarah Tyree-Francis Corporate & Social Sales Manager
Sarah hails all the way from Wisconsin. She brings a wealth of experience both in the service industry as well as non-profit management. A self described lover of food from scratch, and made with love, she loves to work with Birchtree clients for all occasions.
Ryan Horowitz Commissary Manager / Baker
Ryan handles all operations and baking in the Birchtree kitchen. He expands his culinary talent by baking all of Birchtree’s breads, pastry, and kitchen desserts. He joined the Birchtree team in 2011, working his way up in the company from server and dishwasher to management and baker.
Andreas Harvey Human Resources Manager
Andreas has worked as a server and manager in some of the best and busiest restaurants in Philadelphia, including Susanna Foo, Le Bec-Fin and Davio's. With his extensive experience in fine dining, he is in charge of training and educating Birchtree's waitstaff to ensure the highest level of service at our events.
Julia Six Office Manager
Julia is a local artist that graduated with her MFA from Temple University in 2015. Julia grew up in a household that was always cooking together as a family, and co-wrote a cookbook with her mother in 2013. She joined the team in 2017 as Birchtree's office manager.
Agi Czapka Awbury Aeboretum Facilities Host
Agi developed a passion for locally grown and seasonally sourced foods while living in the farm rich Willamette Valley of Oregon. Returning to her Philly roots, she combined that passion and a love of hospitality into a well rounded experience managing some of the most well known restaurants in
Philadelphia including Fork, Rae and Paradiso. She now hosts Birchtree's events at our exclusive venue Awbury Arboretum.
Recent Press
The Best Bite in Philly. Period.

“Imagine, if you will, waiting 30-odd years to have a bite of something that changes your life forever. THAT was what it was like to bite into these gnocchi.” Philly Current Magazine

Grid Magazine Feature: Best Bites for Your Big Day

You simply can’t go wrong with the local, beautiful, delicious food from Birchtree Catering. For nearly 10 years, this woman-owned company has been knocking wedding and party food out of the park and has received a ton of recognition for its work both from wedding resources such as The Knot and review-based sites such as Yelp…”

Philadelphia Inquirer Holiday Feature

“At Birchtree Catering, owner Rasa Stirbys Benefico combined some favorites on her usual catering menu with her own Eastern European family’s Christmas traditions, all in keeping with Birchtree’s emphasis on seasonal, local ingredients. The meal opens with small bites of noodle kugel layered with Lancaster cheddar, Parmesan, and ricotta cheeses, individually baked in mini muffin tins and sauced with a brisket ragu. Next comes a liver pate…”

Best of B&B Winner

“Unlike any other industry awards out there, Best of B&B allows vendors themselves to choose the brightest stars (of the Gold, Silver, and Bronze varieties) from among their colleagues. As a result, these honors illuminate the cream of the wedding vendor crop. After all, what could be a more legitimate honor than a pedestal built by your peers?” – Borrowed and Blue

Favorite Vendors

We love recommending other local small businesses for all of your event needs like desserts, photography, music, design, planning, and vintage and specialty rentals. We list some of our favorites here that deliver exceptional quality, and during your planning process we can curate a list that fits your vision.