OTB Chef Services -- FAQ
1. What are OTB Chef Services?
OTB Chef Services were designed to provide relief for customers who want to integrate OTB deliveries of local organic food into their meal times, but find it challenging to cook dinner each night. We want to help! You deserve to eat well and healthy!
2. Why should I use OTB Chef Services?
OTB Chef Services offers affordable meal preparation for busy households. After your weekly box delivery, an experienced professional chef will visit your home to prepare your choice of weekly meals, based on your dietary preferences.
Prepared meals are left labeled, with simple last minute re-heating instructions, in your own containers, in your refrigerator. Added bonus -- no clean up: we will leave the kitchen spic and span.
Our chefs can either prepare the meals using ingredients from a Culinary Inspiration Box (purchased separately), or our team will design a Bespoke Menu for you, and put together a Bespoke Box of local, sustainable OTB ingredients to cook with, catering to diets of all types.
Whether you have special dietary needs or just want to remove the burden of making dinner, we are here to make your life healthier and easier (and delicious too!)
3. Can I set up long-term OTB Chef Serivces?
Absolutely! Before initiating services, the OTB Chef Service team will consult with you on your lifestyle and dietary preferences. Once you have had a chance to try the services for a week, we can design an on-going program that works for you. While our customers have been very happy wtih ALL of our Chefs, we do endeavor to provide consistency so that the same chef visits your home at the same time, on the same day of the week. If there are special circumstances that warrant a change we will communicate with you ASAP.
4. Is there a minimum fee for Chef Services?
For the OTB Chef Service (and in regards to gift certificates), we have a $236 minimum (for labor, not including food cost) for each visit. Feel free to contact us to discuss a potential arrangement.
5. Who are the chefs?
The OTB Chef Service team is made up of trained professional chefs who have years of experience, a culinary education, and excellent references.
6. Do I need to be home during the meal preparation?
We ask that you are present at the start of your first service to allow for entrance into your home. For future visits, if you plan to be absent at the time of a Chef Service, we are happy to arrange with you for a secure method of gaining entrance into your home.
7. Who provides the equipment?
While preparing food in your kitchen, our chefs will use your equipment (e.g., pots and pans), but will bring their own knives. We ask that you have a working stove, oven and refrigerator. Also, if you would like us to prepare a meal that involves a grill, you will need to provide it.
You'll also need storage containers. We recommend reusable containers, such as Pyrex. Upon request we are happy to purchase storage containers, as well as pots, pans, and other necessary equipment you might not have, and we will add the reimbursement cost to your order. If you have any questions about your kitchen or storage containers, please contact us and ask!
8. What are the prices?
OTB Chef Services, (ordered IN ADDITION to a Culinary Inspiration Box available separately):
- 3 x OTB meals or light dishes to serve 2-4 people: $236 (not including food)
- 4 x OTB meals or light dishes to serve 2-4 people: $262 (not including food)
- 5 x OTB meals or liglht dishes/meals to serve 2-4 people: $287 (not including food)
BESPOKE BOX Chef Services, ordered IN ADDITION to a Bespoke Box available separately:
To create a bespoke menu, OTB Chef Services start at $339, and will be quoted on request, based on your specific needs. Food Costs/Necessary ingredients will be added to your OTB shopping cart by the Chef Services team, in order to cook the agreed upon menu, on top of the cost of the Chef Services.
ADD ON SERVICES (ordered IN ADDITION to ADD ON INGREDIENTS available separately):
- QUINOA BOWL PREPARATION (for 2-4 people): $33.75
- VEGETARIAN PASTA FAMILY MEAL PREPARATION (eg. marinara, primavera, mac-n-cheese, pesto): $22.50
- OMNIVORE PASTA FAMILY MEAL PREPARATION (eg. bolognese, meatballs, sausage ragu): $39.50
- SALAD PREPARATION (with 4-5 garnishes and homemade vinaigrette): $22.50
- PACKED LUNCH PREPARATION (2 lunches eg homemade sandwich/panini and 2 garnishes like salad or fruit): $33.75
- TODDLER/KIDS PLATE PREPARATION (AT LEAST 2 SERVINGS with cut veggies, fruits, cheese, and homemade kids dip like Ranch) $22.50
- SEASONAL SOUP OF THE WEEK PREPARATION (4 servings): $22.50
9. What is included in the price? What about tipping?
Included in the cost is the menu development and customization, travel, meal preparation, packing and storing, detailed labeling, washing salad greens, and thorough cleanup. Tipping your chef is not required but is always appreciated.
10. What if I want a Culinary Inspirations Box recipe, but want to change an ingredient?
Our goal is to provide you with the meals you want! You can set your dietary preferences to Gluten Free or Dairy Free -- or define up to 2 dietary restrictions (or ingredient changes), which Chef Danielle, coordinator of Chef Services, will cater to. She will customize your menu, give instructions to your Personal Chef, and modify your food order. Beyond 2-3 modifications, we will need to set you up with Bespoke menu creation. Any menu/ingredient changes must be submitted by Friday at 5 PM, prior to the Tuesday 12 noon OTB order deadline, in order to give Chef Danielle ample time to customize your menu.
11. Will every ingredient be organic?
We do our best to ensure everything is 100% certified organic for produce, and grassfed for meats. However, it is possible that a specific ingredient may not be readily available in organic, in which case we will choose the most sustainably produced option.
12. How do payments work?
Payments are processed in a simple and secure manner through the OTB website, weekly, at the time of our weekly deadline on Tuesday at 12 noon.
13. What is the cancellation policy?
You can cancel a Chef Service at any time before the weekly deadline on Tuesday at 12 noon, for a Service the following week. After the Tuesday 12 noon order deadline has passed, and credit cards have been charged, 50% of the entire payment will be non-refundable (including both food costs and chef services).
14. What if I want my chef to make a recipe that is not in a Culinary Inspirations Box?
Contact Chef Danielle and she will help you customize your menu and incorporate your favorite recipes.
15. Do I have to change my OTB food order to match my menu?
Leave it to us: Chef Danielle will order all the food your chef needs to execute your menu, and customize your Box for you, included in the Chef Services Fee. Upon request, your food order will be submitted to you ahead of the order deadline for approval.
16. When will my chef come?
You chef will come to your home on a Monday or Tuesday so that they can cook your food for the week while your ingredients are fresh.
17. What if I have picky kids, a special diet, or food allergies?
No problem, Chef Danielle will work with you to design a Menu that fits with your needs! Our Chefs are very experienced with Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian, kid-friendly, Keto, Kosher, and other dietary needs. If your dietary needs are such that you need more than 2-3 changes to a Culinary Inspirations Box, Chef Danielle will design a bespoke menu for you, and let you know the cost, on request, depending on your needs.
18. What if I want my Chef to prepare breakfasts or lunches?
No problem, we can Add-On ingredients for Breakasts and Lunches.
19. How do I reheat the food?
Your Chef will leave you easy-to-follow instructions based on your re-heating preferences (oven/stove, or microwave). In addition to cleaning your kitchen and dishes after cooking, your Chef will also be mindful of storing your selections so that you have minimal dishes to do after enjoying your meal!
20. What if different members of my household have different dietary needs, allergies, or preferences?
We will design a Bespoke Menu for each household member, if need be.
21. Do I hae to use OTB ingredients if I already have the ingredients in my pantry?
OTB provides amazing fresh ingredients straight from the farm or ranch that you might otherwise be unable to obtain. For pantry items, if you have unused OTB ingredients from a prior delivery, or if you have speciality dietary ingredients (like coconut aminos instead of salt etc), we absolutely will make use of them upon request. For our initial visit, your chef will use OTB ingredients, and then inventory what you have in your pantry, so that we are confident that you have sufficient quantities of pantry items for future recipes.
22. Cooking Supplies etc:
If you are low on supplies like food wrap, tin foil, dish soap, or sponges your chef will let you know. If your kitchen is lacking any basic cookware OTB will send you links of exact items that we recommend, to order from Amazon. If you opt to purchase a different brand, or culinary tool, from what we have recommended, OTB is not responsible if that tool cannot fulfill the task.
23. What do I need to do prior to my Personal Chef arriving?
Please clear a shelf in your fridge and store the cold items from your delivery all on that shelf so the chef can find them easily. The plastic produce bags will keep your produce fresh longer so we recommend you keep your produce in the bag.
Leave the shelf stable (room temperature) items together in your delivery box, on your kitchen counter or in an easy to locate spot, along with your customized menu, where your chef will write additional instructions for you.
Leave out containers for food storage, clean and empty.
Empty your dishwasher, trash, and clean your sink prior to your chef's arrival.
What to expect when I am hosting a chef:
Your chef is not expected to perform tasks additional to her cooking, such as shopping, housekeeping, childcare, or pet-sitting. Please do not leave any small children unattended in the home with the chef.
Please try not to use the kitchen while your chef is at work (housekeepers and care-takers: please don't cook your kid's lunch, and then leave a bunch of dirty dishes in the sink while your chef is there...
Please contact Danielle in advance to make additional recipe requests -- please don't hand your chef recipes or extra tasks when they arrive.
24. How long will my Chef be in my kitchen?
Your Chef will typcially come 1 day per week, for 4-8 hours depending on the complexity of your menu.
25. What if a recipe requires last minute cooking like a poached egg?
Chef Danielle will modify the recipes so that your personal chef can execute all your delicious meals during one visit per week, and if you do not wish to do any last minute cooking, we will modify the recipes slightly so that all you need to do is re-heat the meals.
26. Can you leave a meal on the stove so that it is hot when I get home from work?
Due to safety and sanitation concerns, we can only leave a meal warm if you have a slow cooker. Otherwise, your chef will cool your selections in a safe and sanitary manner, and store them in your refrigerator. Reheating time is generally not more than 20 minutes!
27. Does the Chef Service include having our dinner served, and dishes cleared?
OTB Chef services will fill your fridge with wonderful meals that you can easily serve to yourself or your family throughout the week. Since this is not a catering service, your Chef will not stay and serve you dinner, nor clear the dinner dishes.