The LittleWolf story started six years ago, in a small kitchen in East Tamaki.
Marcel Leydesdorff worked in the Auckland restaurant scene at Vinnie’s, MJ’s and EightPointTwo before becoming a partner in a successful Auckland catering company. With a naturally creative persona, 15 years of being a Chef under his belt and experiencing the birth of his first child, Marcel began to reassess his wants for the future. Believing that there could be a creative, edgier approach to catering and events, in November 2010, LittleWolf was born.
Marcel prepped, cooked and delivered his first orders out of a small kitchen in East Tamaki using his navy blue Subaru station wagon. He dabbled in crumpet making, telling bad Dad jokes, experimented with food presentation and worked like a trojan. With the support of family and friends LittleWolf’s reputation began to grow one event at a time and so did the paperwork!
Through a mutual friend Emma Henderson was told about Marcel and his aspirations for LittleWolf. Working for a company that was stifling her career and creativity Emma asked Marcel if they could meet. Over coffee, they discussed the Auckland catering and event scene and Emma was sold on Marcel’s passion and belief to do better in the industry. Realising he may not be able to afford her, Emma offered to work for Marcel for free in the hope she could generate her own salary. How could he say no to that?!
Hospitality is in Emma’s blood and with her experience both in Australia and New Zealand she brought the necessary sales and event expertise (and admin skills!) to LittleWolf when it was needed most. Her love for meeting new people and enjoying the challenge of meeting weird and wonderful briefs is still one of the biggest assets at LittleWolf today.
Emma’s wife Kylie Henderson may not have been very happy that she had offered to work at LittleWolf for free but it’s ultimately a decision that changed their lives for the better! As LittleWolf grew Kylie continued to work on her corporate career but began to take an interest in LittleWolf and the chemistry between Marcel and Emma. In 2013, Kylie made the leap to join LittleWolf as General Manager and third business partner bringing with her focus, financial acuity and strong organisational skills. She is often caught singing in her office with her headphones on and has been known to make the odd prank on the Pack.
Having three tenacious owner-operators focused on their roles led to LittleWolf winning the coveted 2015 Lewisham Foundation Outstanding Caterer award. Never expecting to win it was an honour to receive the recognition from their peers who work in the hospitality industry. Juggling children, something resembling a social life and trying to achieve a work life balance has not always been easy for them but with the tireless support of family and friends they get to spend everyday at a business they love with a Wolf Pack they love even more.
Emma, Kylie and Marcel now have a great (and growing!) team who are proud to offer a bespoke, creative approach to all they do. More than just caterers, they are working towards their goal of offering an end-to-end hospitality service to their clients. Their clients may call it exceptional service, but at LittleWolf they call it Catering and Events with Bite!