‘Grazing gone glamorous’: Junior Grace Wilson caters for This Messy Table LA, gains new work experience


Photo credit: Grace Wilson

One of the tables that junior Grace Wilson arranged for her catering job. Wilson works at This Messy Table LA, a catering company known for their bountiful and chaotic hors d'oeuvres tables.

Cascades of prosciutto, lemon zest-topped grape leaves tucked between a pile of truffle almonds and a trio of figs. An assortment of rosemary, basil and mint. Raspberry-stuffed and honeycomb cheese. This assortment of hors d’oeuvres is what junior Grace Wilson arranges for her job as a caterer at This Messy Table LA, a catering service known for their custom hors d’oeuvres cornucopias.

Wilson started working at This Messy Table LA this past holiday season.

“I grew up around Messy Table. My good friend Anabelle’s mom is the owner, so this was my childhood,” Wilson said. “The company started getting busy during the holiday season, and her mom knew that I had had previous jobs working with food. She hired me and Anabelle, and I have been working the events ever since.”

Wilson’s friend and co-worker, Anabelle Pollack, believes that Wilson has a “great” work ethic.

“Grace and I have grown up together, and to be able to do this job together is really cool,” Pollack said. “We work really well together, and her positive attitude keeps the job fun.”

Pollack and Wilson have catered for events such as Ellen Degeneres’ Christmas party, different movie premieres and Hollywood wrap parties.

“The tables are really something special, so we often get hired by top Los Angeles party planners for exclusive, exciting events,” Wilson said. “We say that our tables are grazing gone glamorous.”

However, This Messy Table LA does not only cater to large events, but also smaller, more “intimate” occasions such as birthday or holiday parties. Wilson said that the company drives all over Los Angeles — from Pasadena to the cliffs of Malibu — to cater for a variety of events.

“The coolest thing about this job for me is that I get to see the diversity and variances across geographical locations,” Wilson said. “We drive all over Los Angeles, and I get to go to really cool places that I have never been.”

Wilson’s job is to help set-up the table, making it look like a “messy” arrangement rather than a “regular” platter of hors d’oeuvres.

“We see the tables as more of an art form than a form of conventional catering,” Wilson said. “We like to keep things messy. I don’t try to put dried fruit in neat rows or crackers in perfect stacks. Instead, I seek to build an overflowing and chaotic cornucopia.”

Although Wilson has held sales associate positions in the past at Laduree and Haagen Dazs, she said that the work at This Messy Table LA is completely different.

“I’ve gained new collaboration, problem-solving, and communication skills,” Wilson said. “I’ve also grown to understand the creative process as a fluid and collaborative one.”