Birchtree’s owner Allegra Derengowski is featured in Subkit’s Entrepreneur Stories. Read about her favorite parts of the job!
Birchtree Catering is a small, woman-owned company started by Allegra Derengowski and Rasa Stirbys Benefico, two friends that met as waitresses and began their company in 2008. Today, Allegra runs the company with her incredible team, focusing on local sourcing, seasonal menus, and scratch cooking in our kitchen in Philadelphia, PA. Our waste is composted and recycled in our kitchen and at events, and we choose sustainable options whenever feasible.
We built our brand slowly by using rental kitchens, hosting tastings in our homes, and growing relationships with vendors and farmers. Today our commissary kitchen is located inside Globe Dye Works in Frankford, Philadelphia, and 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, the 2019 ImpactPHL Award from the Chamber of Commerce, we are listed in Philadelphia’s Good Food Caterers Guide, and our food quality standards have been recognized by Grid Magazine, the Sustainable Business Network of Philadelphia, The Knot Magazine and Philadelphia Wedding Magazine.
Continue to scroll to see our favorite vendors we love to work with at events.
A self-taught planner and entrepreneur, Allegra focuses on marketing and development for Birchtree. She served as Chief Operating Officer for the Sustainable Business Network of Philadelphia, and is a graduate of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program. 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, and a commitment to sustainability that exceeds expectations.
Ron has been part of the Birchtree team since 2019. He started working in the Philadelphia restaurant scene in 2003 after graduating Northampton Culinary school, with focus on French cuisine. He brings a wealth of experience from specialty food preparation, menu planning and event execution. His goals are to find new ways to modernize and revamp classic recipes and food service always with an eye on excellent quality and fresh ingredients.
Spencer has always believed that food should never just be a necessity, but a joy. Originally a chef, Spencer is a Philly native who has worked in every aspect of the events industry. From small niche catering, private chef work, weddings, large corporate and academic food service, to fine dining and specialized high-end productions, he strives to create a fully curated experience for every event. Spencer brings a wide range of experience and a holistic approach to catering and event planning, maintaining that everyone should feel like a guest at their own party.
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 training and educating staff throughout the city, he has maintained high standards for ensuring Birchtree’s employees are treated fairly.
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. From creating cocktail recipes to overseeing event operations, Agi enjoys every aspect of catering.
With 15+ years of teaching experience in and around Philadelphia, Kellieann brought her organizational skills to Birchtree. She has fond memories of cooking with her grandmom and making homemade chocolates with her mother. She was drawn to Birchtree because of our local sourcing and sustainable practices – recycle, reduce, reuse!!
The city’s Office of Sustainability has introduced the program, called the Philadelphia Food Waste Business Challenge, to investigate ways to reduce restaurant food waste. Run in partnership with the Center for EcoTechnology, the program will provide resources to help participating businesses prevent, donate and recycle wasted food. – Read the full story
This fall we were honored to win the Chamber of Commerce ImpactPHL Award. This goes to a business