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Meet the Friendors: MOSAIC Catering + Events

2018-05-17T19:23:01+00:00May 17th, 2018|

Mosaic Catering + Events
Mosaic Catering + Events

Today for our Meet the Friendors blog series we are introducing another incredible caterer from our preferred vendors list, MOSAIC Catering + Events.  

MOSAIC Catering + Events is the accumulation of over 20 years experience in the catering, event organization, party planning and corporate entertainment industry combined with young creative talent in Richmond, VA and Charleston, SC.

We’re a full-service, one-stop shop for all your events, catering, design, rentals and lighting needs. Our team is an eclectic mix of individuals from every area of the hospitality industry. We’re a mix of designers, thinkers, makers, creators, artists, marketers, illumineers, engineers and techies.

With seasonal menu selections, flawless service, and attentive planning, we create truly memorable events. From intimate luncheons to stunning weddings, inspired theme parties to formal corporate occasions, we offer the inspiration, attention to detail and culinary creativity that will make your moment shine. We’ll work with you to plan your event, and we’ll see it through on time, on budget and to your complete satisfaction.

We did a little Q&A with Tory Gilliam, who is a Catering + Events Producer with Mosaic.

Tory Gilliam

How did you get into the events industry?

I discovered that I loved events in college, while working in the development and special events office. After college, I worked for another non-profit, where a big part of my job was planning fundraisers and education conferences. So when I moved back to Richmond, I decided to make events my full time job and MOSAIC was the perfect place for me!

Do you have a favorite menu item from Mosaic?

That’s a hard question! MOSAIC has such a fantastic culinary team as well as a twenty-one year history of recipes that have stood the test of time. Our signature Shrimp & Grits are so good and I can never resist them.


What is your favorite part of working a wedding?

I love the moment when I hear clapping after a ceremony. For a caterer, it means “Showtime!” and it’s our turn to wow the bride & groom and their guests.


So your bio says your a former Jeopardy champion?! Tell us the story behind that!

Jeopardy has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I watched it with my grandfather all the time and every night during dinner. So one day my mom decided to sign me up to take the test. After passing the test and auditioning for some judges, they picked me and I taped my episode later that summer. Even sixteen years later, visiting California and getting to spend time in a Hollywood studio remains one of the coolest experiences of my life. Plus, I’m always up for a round of trivia!

What do you like to do in your free time when you aren’t working?

Reading, Traveling, Trying new restaurants to stay up on food trends


Favorite place you’ve ever traveled?

Cuba. It’s the most culturally immersive trip I’ve ever taken. I’m so grateful that I got to experience the wonderful people, delicious food and unique culture.

As a wedding professional, what is your opinion on first looks?

They create some of my favorite photos/videos from weddings. It’s a moment of raw, authentic emotion, especially for grooms and fathers of the bride.

Mosaic Catering + Events

Harvest Moon Catering

2017-02-22T20:49:31+00:00February 22nd, 2017|

Picking a caterer is a daunting task because there are so many logistics, service styles and personal tastes to consider, which is why we would like to introduce you to one of our favorite caterers here in Charlottesville, Harvest Moon Catering! Get to know them, how they started and what interesting places catering has taken them with our Q&A with the team!


Q: How did Harvest Moon come to be?

A: A little over 21 years ago, UVA graduates Mark Hahn and Robert Gustafson saw the opportunity to cater for the University community, thus, Harvest Moon Catering was born.  With this initial success, HMC added weddings and private events to the mix.  As the company grew over time, they layered in quite a bit of philanthropic partnering with good works organizations to better serve the community in which we all live.  As Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville grew wildly in its popularity as a wedding destination town, so did Harvest Moon Catering’s success.


Q: Favorite part about your job?

A: I love getting to know my clients and their stories.  I love that regardless of how transient our world is, we continue to gather socially and share our important moments.  I love helping to coordinate these gatherings and shared moments.


Q: We know it takes a team of people to make dinner service work effectively and efficiently. What are some of the challenges and solutions to making sure everyone stays happy?

A: Challenges:

Dinner service challenges change depending on the style of service.  

  • With plated service, a couple of challenges are when we receive incorrect information regarding a guest’s order, and when guests change their order “in real time.”  
  • Cold weather can be a challenge for buffet dinner service.  
  • Having enough surface space on a table can be a challenge for Family style service.  
  • Making sure the Bride and Groom get to eat.


  • To resolve the issues of changing entree orders for plated service, we bring overage to ensure that we can accommodate a guest’s request.  We also designate one person, our “fixer”, to handle these changes in real time, so that our service teams can continue to serve tables, while a guest who wants something different isn’t left to wait.
  • Creating smart menus for buffet service can often prevent against weather issues negatively affecting the integrity of our food.  For example, trout and flank steak don’t hold their heat very well, but salmon and strip steak do.  
  • We ask our clients to limit the number of guests at each table to ensure we have enough surface space for family style platters.  We also provide guidance for smart table top plate choices, as well as other table top decor to ensure
  • We train servers who are then assigned to the bride and groom for the night.  This server ensures that the bride and groom are taken care of from post ceremony drinks, to post pictures appetizers, to dinner service, to a to go bag with snacks, sweets, and drinks for later that night.  


Q: What is your hidden talent?

A: I would say my hidden talent is seeing the logistical flow of an event under a variety of scenarios so that I can guide a client towards smart decisions.


Q: What is the one (of many!) Harvest Moon appetizers that no event is complete without?

A: Tuna tartar taco with wasabi creme fraiche and pickled radish or grilled shrimp and chorizo skewer with red onion jam.


Q: Most unique place Harvest Moon has taken you?

A: Carnegie Institute of Science in Washington DC

Harvest Moon Catering

Sam Hill Entertainment

2017-02-20T19:47:29+00:00February 19th, 2017|

We love working with vendors (our friendors!) and meeting new ones along the way! Today, we are shining a spotlight on Sam Hill Entertainment through a series of rapid fire Q&A with booking agent, Andy Jaspen. Not only is he great at helping suggest specific bands for your style, he gives some great advice and questions to ask when booking your entertainment. Let us introduce you to Andy!

Q: Tell us a little bit about Sam Hill Entertainment and how you found yourself working there?

A: I met Hank Wells, the owner/founder of Sam Hill Entertainment, when he had just formed the company in the mid-90’s and he was booking bands for fraternity parties at UVA on the Rugby Road scene. I was one of his early clients, a social chair for my fraternity, and I booked a lot of our bands with him in the early days. We formed a quick friendship over music. I graduated in ’99, worked a “real desk job” for 2 years that I quit in 2001 and I went out to California where my girlfriend (now wife, Jenny) was living, and was figuring out my next move. That was just when Hank was expanding Sam Hill Entertainment in exciting ways, and he was looking for somebody to help him around the office and do a little bit of everything …but back in Charlottesville. There were only 2 people working there at the time – still a very “small business.” On a whim, I left California, moved back to C’ville, took a job that paid little but had the promise of big things. Here I am, 15 years later, as a partner in the company.

Q: Favorite part about your job?

A: My favorite part of my job is meeting people years after their wedding or special event, and they say “hey, I used Sam Hill Entertainment to book a great band years ago”. Alas, they’re often somebody I worked with over phone and email but never got a chance to meet in person, but I ultimately get to share a moment and memory with them of one of our bands showing their family and guests an amazing time. That always feels really good.

Q: Your hidden talent?

A: My hidden talent …and favorite party trick …. is being able to conjure in my brain what day of the week a certain date was years ago or will be a year or more in the future. Since our business revolves so heavily around Saturdays in the calendar, people are often amazed when a date is mentioned far in the future, and I can say, “hey, that’s going to be a Thursday.” The honest reason I know that so quickly is its basically my job, but it still never ceases to impress people who themselves can’t remember what day tomorrow is going to be.

Q: Why book a band or DJ through Sam Hill Entertainment?

A: Sam Hill Entertainment specializes in 100% “live” music. There are other entertainment companies that also represent DJ’s, or magicians, or jugglers or whatever. That’s not us. We’re all about live bands and bringing the live music experience to special events. Our bands are all curated to be more than just uniquely talented on stage, but also extraordinarily client-focused off-stage. Our bands “get it” and approach events with clients in mind, first and foremost.

Q: You can only watch one late night talk show for the rest of your life, do you choose Jimmy Fallon, James Corbin or Jimmy Kimmel?

A: Ha, that’s a tough one. I love late-night TV. Grew up idolizing Letterman. Of today’s talents, I think Fallon is amazingly funny and hip, and James Corbin impresses me as well. But of those three, I probably identify with the overall brand of humor of Kimmel, so I’ll go with him. But honestly, I think I might appreciate Conan O’Brien the most. But he’s on TBS, so it barely counts.

Q: What is one question that brides/grooms should ask before booking a DJ/Band?

A: I would recommend asking how the communication and interaction will go and making sure a band’s (or agency’s) communication style is going to be a good fit. A client will spend a lot more time thinking about their event in the months prior and working in advance with their vendors than they will at the actual event itself. In many ways, how the communication and preparation process goes is just as meaningful to the overall experience as how things unfold on the big night. Sam Hill Entertainment as a company and all our bands try to be responsive, helpful and trusted stewards of the responsibility for entertainment at an event. We know that it often starts on the phone or through email, and want to make sure our clients are comfortable with the experience throughout the entire process.

Sam Hill Entertainment

Hallie & Bradford

2017-02-14T18:01:41+00:00February 14th, 2017|

Hallie and Bradford were married at The Lodge on October 22, 2016 and their photographer, Paula Player Photography, captured the day perfectly! From the getting ready pictures, the emotional first look and the band that kept the party going reflected the love and joy that is shared between these two families. We hope you enjoy the photos as much as we did!

Venue: The Lodge at Mount Ida Farm

Event Planner: Beverly Wakefield (A Grand Affair)

Caterer for Wedding: The Local

Other Food: Carpe Donut

Officiant: Dr. Raymond Spence

Band: Horizon Band

Photographer: Paula Player Photography

Florist: Flowers by Cathy Lee

Hair/Makeup: Glam Squad

Transportation: Quicks Transportation and Mount Ida

Foxtail Cottage Floral

2017-02-12T19:29:40+00:00February 11th, 2017|

Welcome back to our Meet our Friendors series! Today we would like to introduce you to Karen, owner of Foxtail Cottage Floral who has worked as a visual stylist and designer for over 20 years. She has the experience, the know how and the vision to make the ordinary great!  We might be a little obsessed with her website too, check it out here!


Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and how Foxtail Cottage came to be?  

Foxtail came to be out of a desire to make and offer a creative environment for artists to work and feel safe and appreciated.

Q: We are sure you get asked this question a lot, but we have to ask! The dog that appears on your website, does he/she have a name?  

Niblet is my sweet little Havanese.  She loves the camera and she is a natural born star!


Q: Panera Bread or Baker’s Crust?  

Baker’s Crust.

Q: Upcoming wedding trends that you are seeing?   

I hope to see more rich and saturated colors.

Q: Favorite part about your job is?  

The design aspect.  I see the petals of flowers like paints on a palette.

Q: If you could travel anywhere for one day, where would it be?  

Bellagio, Lombardy.

Q: What is one question bride’s should ask before booking a florist?

How important are flowers to your wedding. If flowers are done well, with high quality flowers, containers ,etc ., this may be an expensive ticket item. But, well worth it!

Q: Favorite color combinations to work with are?  

A beautiful mix of deep wine burgundy, hot pink, and curry golden yellows.


Thanks Karen for having fun with us on our rapid-fire Q&A session!


Amore Events

2017-01-27T19:42:56+00:00January 27th, 2017|

Behind every fabulous wedding is a fabulous event planner crossing every “T” and dotting every “i”. We’ve known Cody Grannis from Amore Events for several years now and we know this full service planning team makes dreams and visions come to life! Cody was gracious enough to entertain our rapid-fire Q&A session where she shared a little bit about herself and the questions to ask event planners.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and how Amore Events came to be?
​A: My name is Cody Grannis, I am a mother of 4 and originally from Manassas, Virginia.
I worked at the University of Virginia as an event planner for 5 years, before I opened Amore Events. ​

Q: What is your hidden talent?
A: ​Love to sing!​

Q: One question bride and grooms should ask before hiring an event planner?
A: ​Is this someone I can spend an entire year with? Are they intimidating,? Will they hear me out? Will they incorporate our ideas?​

Q: Most unique place Amore Events has taken you?
​A: St. Thomas​

Q: Funniest wedding story to date?
A: ​Recently one of our brides caught her marriage license on fire, right after the wedding ceremony.
Instead of getting upset, she laughed & the courts sent her a new one!​

Q:Best part about your job is?
​A: Meeting new people, spending time and learning about our couples.​

Follow Cody on Instagram at @amoreeventco or visit her via website 

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This Is A Custom Widget

This Sliding Bar can be switched on or off in theme options, and can take any widget you throw at it or even fill it with your custom HTML Code. Its perfect for grabbing the attention of your viewers. Choose between 1, 2, 3 or 4 columns, set the background color, widget divider color, activate transparency, a top border or fully disable it on desktop and mobile.