Want to eat, cook and travel like a KC top chef? Start with this list.

Chef turned professor Mary Berg was KC’s best caterer two year’s running. Dig into her secrets for fine living.

Mary Berg’s List

The former owner of Delish! Catering and Events, chef Mary Berg knows how to keep a large group entertained and well-fed. Her dream of becoming a chef started after she completed her undergraduate studies at William Jewel College and received a master’s degree at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Berg then enrolled in the culinary program at Johnson County Community College, where she now serves as a professor in hospitality management.

Her knowledge and experience have won over the people of Kansas City, who chose Delish! as the city’s best caterer in 2009 and 2010.

  1. Krokstrom Klubb & Market. I am continually blown away by the textures, flavors and quality of food that owner Katee McLean and her team prepare. I can’t choose a favorite menu item because everything I try is so good— my “favorite” changes every time. But the table always orders the pork belly smorrebrod.
  2. OBAGI Tinted Sun Shield in Warm. It’s a broad spectrum sunscreen that I use on my face every day. My mother and grandmother both had beautiful skin and taught me from an early age that keeping the sun “off my face” was the secret. I carry a tube in my purse to reapply during the day.
  3. The Walking Dead on AMC. Zombies, blood, unrealistic plot lines and a total escape from reality with the people I love for an hour on Sunday night is a slice of heaven.
  4. Whimsy Cheesecakes. When I place an order I just ask Carla Schreiber, the owner, to do her thing and I’m never disappointed. Everything she makes is phenomenal!
  5. Global knives. I love them because they are lightweight, have a narrow handle, excellent balance and maintain a razor-sharp edge with little effort. When I am prepping and have a ton of knife work, I can power through cases of product when using my Globals.
  6. Travel. It’s so important to be able to get, whether it’s ten or 10,000 miles away. Having quality time with friends and family is the only way I can recharge and stay creative.
  7. Janesko Jewelry. I have several pieces, but my favorite is the twist diamond lariat. Jennifer only created three in this style, and I absolutely love it! I’m very committed to shopping local and supporting local businesses, and Jennifer shares that mindset.
  8. Lifted Spirits Distillery. I fell in love with their Bright Gin, which has a unique flavor for a gin. Instead of a super heavy juniper berry flavor, they created Gin that is scented with juniper, orange and coriander for a clean, crisp citrus flavor.
  9. My mom’s recipes. I love the comfort and familiarity of creating her recipes as well as carrying on the family tradition of gathering together and celebrating around a table full of great food and drink.

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