Menu by Mike combines the talents of Michael Farnum and Samantha Langer to provide pampered catered events for any type of occasion. Whether you are hosting a small gathering or an intimate dinner for two, we will create a unique food and wine experience that your guests will not soon forget.
Michael Farnum, Culinary Director
Michael Farnum has spent the better half of five decades honing his culinary skills and developing his gastronomical palate. A student of the culinary arts in its truest sense, he first began his journey as a gourmand at the tender age of ten, much to his Dad’s chagrin, by attempting to bake cookies after school. As a teenager, upon returning home from soccer practice, Michael started his journey in earnest as he prepared dinner for his family each night. Soon thereafter, his insatiable curiosity and fascination took hold and he worked to further develop his skills within the kitchen, creating his first signature dish at age 27.
Michael’s maverick approach to gastronomy proved successful, both in defining his unique flair as an epicure and in delighting those who were given the opportunity to sample his cuisine. Michael’s ceaseless drive and determination in the kitchen allowed him to first conquer classic American egg dishes leading to his well-known French toast recipe. With the understanding that a sauce had the power to make or break a meal, Michael spent years cultivating his skills in the fine art of sauce making, culminating with his Pomegranate & Plum Grilling and Basting Sauce.
Later in life, Michael continued to ascend from his amateur status and master his craft, delving into the complex spheres of French, Creole, and Trinidadian cuisine. He has delighted friends for the past five years with his annual Five-Course New Year’s dinner party that rivals reservations at the best restaurants.
Michael received Classic Culinary Training from the French Culinary Institute in New York, learning professional techniques to augment his own innovative style. In addition, Michael is a member of The American Culinary Federation, Inc. and the James Beard Foundation.
While he carried this love of cuisine throughout his entire life, Michael utilized his business know-how and technical savvy to make a career for himself in the Information Technology field. He spent nearly forty years as an Information Technology Consultant and Executive. Though rewarding in its own right, Michael consistently and actively sought to incorporate his passion for food into his career as an IT Executive.
Beginning in 2005, Michael began to combine his love affair with food and his position in Information Technology. Using his skills and culinary passion, he rewarded small groups of company team-building gatherings with samplings of his
expertise and dedication. His cooking became folklore within his company’s national IT community.
In 2011, Michael Farnum launched Menu by Mike. Along with assistance from Samantha Langer, Menu by Mike specializes in both traditional and modern haute cuisine. We recognize that catering success is based on a delicate balance of great food, proper preparation and event hosting, requiring careful attention to every detail.
Samantha Langer, Wine Consultant & Event Planning Director
No meal is complete without a perfectly matched selection of fine wines. Much like Michael Farnum, Menu by Mike Wine Consultant Samantha Langer brings passion to her work.
Samantha began her journey as an oenophile over thirty years ago as an outlet to release stress and explore new landscapes. At the time, she was living in Manhattan and working on the West coast. Far away from home and in need of a change of scenery, she began visiting wineries on her days off.
Her passion and love for wine has grown exponentially since then. Whenever Samantha visits new places, no matter how unique or remote the location, she will actively seek out and explore the local vineyards, including the deserts of New Mexico and California. Of course, she also makes frequent visits to the more recognized wine regions in New York, Washington, and California. This love of travel and wine tasting has taken Samantha to over 21 states and the Niagara On the Lake region in Canada.
Samantha’s love for wine quickly turned into an educational venture as she developed a relationship with her local wine store. Starting with the least expensive wines, she gradually tasted her way up each price point and varietal, keeping a journal of every single tasting she has done. She has even made her own wine. This level of exposure provides Samantha with the ability to suggest an excellent wine for virtually any budget.
Her level of commitment has earned her credibility as a Wine Consultant, and she is continuously invited to attend wine tasting events and seminars only available to members of the wine trade.
Samantha received her Advanced Degree Certification from WSET (Wine and Spirit Educational Trust) in 2007 and currently consults for Taste d’Vine. Past credentials include Wine Consultant with the Traveling Vineyard; Vice President and Board Member for the New York City chapter of Women for WineSense.
Combined with her event management and planning experience, Samantha is the perfect addition to Michael’s gastronomic expertise, enabling Menu by Mike to create pampered catered events for any occasion.
Here at Menu by Mike, we continually strive to have our passion for food evidenced in our work, and sincerely hope that you’ll allow us to bring culinary pleasure to your next event!