First, Jeremy Scott sent out Golden Arches couture on the Moschino runway and served it up with a side of Frito-Lay and even Budweiser to wash it down. Ever since, it seems fashion has been eating up all the junk food it can find. But just because designers are sending models down the catwalk with fast food on their sleeves doesn’t mean they’ve swapped green juice for French fries.
Backstage at the shows, farm-to-table meals are in season now more than ever. Diane von Furstenberg and her crew had a medley of kale-and-apple salad, roasted sweet potatoes, organic tofu salad, and roasted beets with naval oranges on hand before the Fall 2015 show earlier this month. Designer Sophie Theallet opted for a similar menu, along with salmon salad, bulgur, and broccoli with almonds. And at castings and fittings for some of fashion week’s most anticipated shows, including Alexander Wang and The Row, it was all about spiced butternut squash with carrots, and lentils with apple (in between talk of hemlines and catwalkers, of course). The models especially loved the roasted Brussels sprouts with spicy sunflower seeds.
All of those major labels ordered their catering from the same spot: Dig Inn, the farm-fresh catering company and restaurant chain that is now in its second season of collaborating with the CFDA on its Health Initiative. The mission started last year as part of the CFDA’s effort to promote wellness and a healthy working environment for the fashion community.
“Almost all the designers ordered roasted Brussels sprouts and broccoli with roasted garlic and almonds,” reports Hannah Carter, the catering manager for the three-year-old company. “I think those two are particular fan favorites to ensure the team gets their greens in before showtime.”
Max Osterweis of Suno, who ordered Dig Inn to fuel his backstage team of roughly 200 people for the second season running, tells Style.com, “They are a perfect fit for a team with varying tastes, and we always look forward to their delicious dishes.” Of the spread, which included charred chicken, spinach salad, cauliflower with chickpeas, and Brussels sprouts (of course), he said, “The dishes are as colorful as our prints.”
Designers and models aren’t the only ones in the fashion set Dig-ing Inn these days—Condé Nast editors have been flocking to the nearby Brookfield Place (Hudson Eats) outpost since our headquarters were relocated downtown to One World Trade Center. Especially before the new Condé cafeteria opened, you could just about guarantee that the queue for Dig Inn would be full of Condé employees.
Dig Inn, formerly known as Pump Energy, started out as a post-workout protein provider for the fitness set. So how did it become the caterer du jour to the NYC fashion crowd in a few short seasons? Perhaps it’s the fact that its offerings are much like The Fat Radish, the Lower East Side restaurant and catering company that’s been a favorite of the fashion crowd for many years now.
“Our mission from the day we launched over three years ago has been to make delicious, farm-fresh food accessible to all who care to enjoy it,” says Dig Inn founder Adam Eskin, adding that they’ve also recently catered events for major brands like Etsy and Apple. “For us, transparency and a real commitment to sourcing our ingredients mindfully is at the core of what we do, and it seems like the fashion crowd in particular values that commitment.”
They’re already busy planning next runway season’s menus. It will be interesting to see what additional fashion brands enlist Dig Inn’s food services in the coming year. While some top brands like Calvin Klein and Michael Kors went with Food Trends Catering and Noz Catering, respectively, for this most recent NYFW season, perhaps even more will join the Inn tribe come September.