New catering business opens in Beech Creek

PHOTO PROVIDED At left, Chef Mickala Dorman with her role model and instructor, Chef Jason Potanovich of the Culinary Institute of America.

BEECH CREEK — Chef Mickala Dorman is back home, and at the age of 24 is following her dreams as the chef and CEO of a new catering company in the Lock Haven area.

Her business is called Twisted Whisk Catering, and she is located at 43 Ramsey Hallow Rd., Beech Creek.

Dorman is a young entrepreneur who attended Central PA Institute of Science and Technology and went on to the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N. Y.

“I rent the kitchen from the Sylan Hill Christian Service Camp in Howard and will deliver anywhere within a 30-mile radius, including Williamsport, Lock Haven, Bellefonte, State College, Centre Hall and more,” Dorman said.

Her menu includes pork, chicken, beef, pastas, fish, soups and salads. She also offers gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options.

Her most popular item is expected to be a bacon-wrapped meatloaf stuffed with gouda cheese and glazed with maple syrup. Dorman and Nolan Rollo, who helps with marketing Twisted Wisk, make their own maple syrup that comes from the maple trees on their Beech Creek location.

“My pap… when I was younger he was a chef on a Navy boat. He was also a cook at the Nittany Lion Inn. Between him and my mom, they taught me the family recipes… they just threw me into the kitchen. I was about 7. I remember standing on stools to assist them by stirring the pot or whatever I could do to help. They were a big influence, a big inspiration. I figured it out at a young age. I wanted to cook. That’s all I knew,” detailed Dorman.

While Dorman went to schooling in New York, she is excited to be back in central Pennsylvania.

“I grew up here, I have a lot of connections here. I lived in New York for a few years, did some catering there… but it is just not home to me,” she said.

Now, as of Oct. 1, which was the official launch day of the Twisted Whisk Catering company, Dorman is running a business of her own.

“It has been really good already. I have gotten a few inquiries already. I have a reunion event coming up, my first catering for Twisted Whisk. I have a wedding planned September next year, catering to 250 people. I have been contacted about being an official caterer for Penn State University. I’m really looking forward to it,” she said.

“The Facebook page has gotten quite a few likes. At first, it was mostly friends and family but now we are starting to see the community discovering the page,” Rollo said.

Small events, like tailgating, customers should provide Dorman orders three to four days in advance of the event. Larger scale events, like the 250 person wedding, should be ordered at least six months in advance.

Twisted Whisk is also ideal for social gatherings, birthdays, bridal showers, baby showers, corporate events, or any kind of social gathering.

“Any time you have a large crowd and don’t want to cook, give me a call. We also offer what we call D.Y.I. catering, where we give customers a cheaper option,. Instead of getting full services they can just pick up the food at the kitchen or I could drop it off and they serve it themselves…which is an option most catering businesses in the area do not offer,” Dorman said.

She also does residental events, such as private in-house cooking lessons and private in-house chef parties.

“My hopes and dreams were always to open my own business by the age of 30. At 24, I could have looked at it like I have six more years…but I said to myself ‘if this is what you want to do, just do it.’ So I just did it,” Dorman said.

“The name is everything. Any time you create your own business, the name is the brand,” Rollo explained. “We considered a few others, Wicked Whisk, Purple Knife, all kinds of names based on kitchen appliances and stuff, but we really liked the name. Once we had the name, I made a really bad drawing of a whisk logo, based on a tattoo Mickala has on her wrist. I sent it to Luke Fuller, a graphic designer at The Foundation Printing based in Binghamton, N.Y., and he did an incredible job with it, completely transformed it. That is the logo you see on the website and Facebook page today.”

The website is twistedwhiskcatering.com.

“Once I got the logo and website established, I knew. All the insurance and clearances are already set up. This is legitimate. I am a small business owner. I am living my dreams. I know it is going to be hard. Being a 24-year-old female and being a chef, I am going to have to work three times harder than anyone else in an industry dominated by men… but I am ready to prove myself,” Dorman said.

To place catering orders, visit the website or call Mickala at 814-422-5134.

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