Chef expands family meal, catering services to running cafe

July 11, 2018

Chef Lance White has added running a cafe to his business of preparing meals for busy families and catering.

He’s operating the kitchen at Signature Flight Support at Joe Foss Field. While Chef Lance’s Cafe serves flight crews and passengers of the private jets that use Signature’s services, it’s also open to the public from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays.

“It’s not gourmet, just old-fashioned greasy spoon-type food,” White said of the menu, which changes periodically. It typically features a few breakfast items, burgers, other sandwiches, hand-battered Stensland Family Farms cheese curds, and French fries and kettle chips that are made on-site.

Diners eat in Signature’s spacious waiting area, which offers a view of airplanes taking off and landing. They also can get an up-close view of the private jets that come to town. Earlier this month, for example, when the WWE professional wrestlers were here, the corporate plane was sitting on the tarmac. Every now and then, someone famous strolls by. White said he spotted actor Vince Vaughn recently.

The space is great for a meal and conversation, White said, noting that “it’s a quiet place. A lot of restaurants are really loud.” It’s also convenient and quick for workers on the north side of town, where there aren’t a lot of restaurants and the fast-food drive-thrus can get backed up at lunch, he said.

The location is easy to find, and there’s plenty of free parking. Signature Flight Support is at 3501 N. Aviation Ave., which is one block north and one block west off of the main road into the Sioux Falls Regional Airport.

Signature’s conference room can be reserved for breakfast or lunch meetings and holds up to 30 people. “You can order off the menu, or we can put a buffet together so they can eat at the same time,” White said.

He’s also going to use that space for what he’s calling pop-up dinners. The first will be July 25 featuring a “classic Americana” foods with a “bit of that Chef Lance twist.” White’s business doesn’t have an alcohol license, so guests will be invited to bring their own beverages.

White, who got his start cooking at Theo’s as a high school dropout in 1995, operated the flight service cafe from 2010-12. He was recruited to be the chef for Buffalo Ridge Resort in Gary and did that for three years before returning to Sioux Falls. White then started his family meal and catering service, Lance White Chef Services, renting kitchen space from restaurants and other organizations.

“When I moved back, what I realized was there was a huge need (for family meals) with moms and dads both working, especially when school is in and getting kids to where they need to go.”

Running Signature’s cafe gives him a permanent home for the catering and family meal services.

His catering business is personalized to every customer, whether it’s feeding one person, a small business meeting or a large event.

For the family meal service, White offers customers three choices every week. They place orders by Sunday, and the meals are delivered to their homes Monday night.

He makes a family meal that will feed four to six people with “chef-size portions.” Customers can order one meal for $35 or all three for $100. There’s also a $10 individual-size option.

For the most part, they meals are fully cooked and can be reheated in the oven or microwave. Some dishes, such as lasagna, need to be fully baked. White recommends they be eaten within seven days or frozen.

With the family meal service, catering and cafe, White is a busy chef, but “I’m doing what I love.”

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Chef expands family meal, catering services to running cafe

Chef Lance White has added running a cafe to his business of preparing meals for busy families and catering.

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