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On The Town With Rex Reed

On the Town With Rex Reed
New York Observer

No sooner had I recovered from the joy of receiving, from CBS/FOX Home Video, the complete collection of every Sherlock Holmes movie ever made with Basil Rathbone (all available at $19.95 each) than what should appear in my mail but an invitation to a delectable party thrown by Basil Rathbone’s beautiful granddaughter Dounia. Sick of “Glorious Foods”? Try Dounia’s catering service, which she calls, nostalgically, “Remember Basil” [ now Lighten Up Catering ]. Munching Szechuan duck with sour cherries in iced Boston lettuce with Arlene Dahl, downing giant prawns in green chili pesto with Jenny Gucci (delighting all listeners with true tales of what “60 Minutes” couldn’t show in its expose of the Gucci dynasty) and gnawing away at the oysters Rockefeller with newlyweds Jane Powell and Dick Moore, I realized Sherlock Holmes never dies. He just keeps going, on VHS and Panzanella herb toast. Dounia Rathbone agrees with her famous grandfather: “Food – especially catering – is like show business. You produce it in one day and then you close.”

News From The Beard House

News From The Beard House
Special Event
Halloween Party
Dounia Rathbone,
Remember Basil,
Brooklyn Heights, NY
Friday, October 30th, 7:00 pm

GraceIt’s impossible to imagine a caterer better qualified to create a fabulous Halloween party for us than Dounia Rathbone and her celebrated company, Remember Basil. After all, these are the folks famous for the 6 am airport buffet for Malcom Forbes’ 70th birthday at which 650 people, ready to board planes for Morocco, enjoyed authentic Far Eastern foods on tables tied with gold bows and sprinkled with gold dust set amid grapes hung from harem windows and exotic flowers spraying from three-foot-high bronze Turkish samovars. Then there were the Kryptonite cocktails and bread Metropolis to mark the premiere of the Superman movie. And the all-pink dinner for Donna Karan. And the Winter’s Tale for American Express, the one for which Rathbone created a woodland, framing the buffet with leafless trees, covering it entirely with deer moss (bought at 5 am at the flower market), and serving the food on stumps, logs, and large leaves. We can’t wait to see what she’ll do for us given the possibilities presented by the year’s spookiest holiday.

Remember Basil is named for its founder’s favorite uncle, the actor Basil Rathbone, best known for his brilliant portrayal of Sherlock Holmes. Dounia Rathbone was also an actress; but after a stint in the Waldorf’s kitchens, she opened her catering busi- ness and clients like Carla Fendi, Bunny Mellon, Mary Tyler Moore and Jackie Onassis are delighted she did.

As always on Halloween, Foundation guests are encouraged to come in costurne.

On the Avenue

Entertaining Fish
Recipes for the ultimate summer fish fest

GraceWhether it’s dinner at eight or dinner for eight hundred, Dounia Rathbone of Remember Basil, Ltd. can handle it with aplomb. Known for her delicious imagination, this top caterer has blazed culinary pathways on the party circuit with themed dinners that emphasize taste, service, and dramatic presentation. Of course, a flair for theatrics runs in the Rathbones: Her grandfather was the great actor Basil Rathbone, known equally for his Sherlock Holmes films and his Shakespeare. Fish is always delightful in summer, and Rathbone has created this Hamptons seafood buffet menu especially for On The Avenue. She suggests creating a touch of drama by serving the food an a buffet table with different levels-inve rt a wine crate, cover it with a tablecloth and use it to raise certain items off the buffet. French country tiles, good wicker baskets, copper pots, and white pottery WM also add sparkle to the table. “I use food to create or match an environment”, says Rathbone. “Each party is a statement. Getting the message across depends on the bringing together of lots of different talents to produce something unique and beautiful.”

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Ethnic Menu

Ethnic Menus Available On Request … Our experience includes:

  • African
  • Indian
  • Middle Eastern
  • Caribbean
  • Persian
  • South American

And, Yes …

  • We have had your Grandmothers in our kitchen to share their family recipes with us, and to show us how to “Do It Right”!

Call 201-209-9325 or email:

Passed & stationary hors d’oeuvre

Chicken Tandoori:Bite sized pieces of chicken cutlet soaked in Tandoori marinade, grilled & skewered with fresh Mango & Avocado. Served with Yogurt-Mint Chutney

Chicken Satay in our award winning Thai Peanut Sauce
Scallop Seviche; marinated with lime, cilantro, red & green peppers, onions
Indian Eggplant Spread (spiced & mixed with tomatoes & onions)
Served with our unique Spicy Pita Crisps
Shrimp grilled in Green Chili Pesto
Shomai: crisp Chinese Dumplings served with ginger-teriyaki dipping sauce
Indian Spiced Eggs with Coriander in tiny tartlets topped with Red Pepper

Signature Crudite; Basket of 15 hand carved raw vegetables arranged in our Antique Basket to resemble a Basket of Flowers, with Chipotle or Hummus dip

Main Course Action Buffets

Carving Buffet: Chefs will carve & serve
Indian Butterflied Leg of Lamb, marinated with ginger, garlic, cumin & cardamom
In a yogurt base; served with authentic Marcouk Shepherd’s Bread or Naan
Sesame-Ginger Asian Flank Steak, grilled rare & sliced
Roast Pork Calypso: glazed with Rum, Brown Sugar, Cloves & Lime

Table of Exotic Stews & Curries

Shrimp Penang: Thai vegetarian sauce of coconut milk, spices & vegetables over rice or rice noodles
Pad Thai: Traditional dish of Rice Noodles,Broccoli, Scallions, Snow Peas & Satay sc. withThai Coconut Milk Sauce
Biriyani: Indian Wedding dish: Saffron Rice, Yogurt marinated Chicken,
Served with Fried Onions, Cauliflower with ginger & coriander
Jamaican Curried Lamb with Coconut, served with Fried Plantains
Lamb & Dried Fruit Curry with Peanuts & Banana Garnish
Fish & Shrimp Stew with Tomatoes, Coriander & Coconut
Red Beans & Rice cooked with Annatto Oil & Sofrito

Garden of Salads, Sambal, Raita & Chutney

West African Fish Imojo: Fish Salad with Hot Peppers & Lime
Lentil Salad with Shallots & Chillies
Condiments: Tomato Ginger Chutney, Cucumber Mint Raita, Yogurt & Potatoes,
Mango Chutney, Apricot Chutney, Date Chutney
Breads: Fried Papadum, Pita, Naan, Marcouk Shepherds & Banana or Pumpkin

One of a kind buffet table decorations will be created using my authentic pieces.
Hand carved Kashmiri Wooden Chest filled with spices, Indian Red & Gold Silk Fabric, Ancient Harem Window & Desert Water Wheel, Shells from the Red Sea, 3 foot high Turkish Coffee Pot, Huge Teak Salad Bowl, Hand Carved Wooden Serving Bowls, Bedouin Goat Grab Bowl, Many Copper Pots, smaller Artifacts from Asia & Africa & Masks.
*You can see some of these items in the photographs.

A traditional Wedding cake can be augmented by a selection of the following…..or stand alone: Iced Lemon souffle with fresh Strawberries & candied Lemon Shreds

Fresh Fruits & Berries

Asssorted Finger Sweets: Our finger sweet platter includes at least 6 of the following: Double Chocolate Brownies, Caramel Walnut Squares, Molasses Spice Cookies, Almond Shortbread cookies, Oatmeal butter cookies, Lemon Bars, German Chocolate Squares, Pear-Orange-Walnut Cake, Lavender Pound Cake, fresh fruit & mint garnish

Please call Grace for your personal consultation. She has lived abroad for many years & is delighted to apply her creative skills to your event.

Platters of Assorted Artisanal Focaccia, Wraps, Brioche Rolls & Portuguese Breads

  • Genoa Salami, Fresh Mozzarella, Roasted Pepper, S.D.Tomato and Pesto on Olive Focaccia
  • Turkey, Smoked Gouda, Honey Mustard, Lettuce and Tomato on honey wheat wrap or onion brioche
  • Tuna Health Salad ; loaded with crispy veggies, lettuce in a S.D. tomato wrap or 7 grain health
  • Cajun Grilled Chicken, Caramelized Onion, Honey Mustard Sauce on Rosemary Square
  • Vegetarian: Grilled Eggplant, Fresh Mozzarella, Roasted Pepper, on Olive Focaccia
  • Thai Chicken, spicy peanut sauce, crispy carrots, cucumber, in a habanero wrap
  • BBQ Chicken, grilled peppers, caramelized onions, crispy salad mix in black bean wrap
  • Blackened Chicken Caesar with parmesan on French Seeded Roll
  • Lean Virginia Ham, Swiss Cheese, Honey Mustard, romaine ,Tomato on Marble Rye