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SPREAD Catering and Events Co.

Who we are...

SPREAD Catering and Events Co. is a group of hospitality focused professionals that share a philosophy of intuitive, contemporary, southern hospitality. From bartenders to line cooks, everyone involved in our events has the same goal in mind, taking care of you and yours in an intuitive and thoughtful fashion. Our roots lie in locally inspired North Carolina cuisine and hospitality. We possess a unique ability to assist you in identifying your vision while offering ideas to present that vision in a truly customized experience. We take pride in the fact that we’ve created a nurturing environment that lets all of the caring individuals on our team thrive. Not only are we ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen, but ultimately, we are people taking care of people.


Chef — Owner of SPREAD

John Upsal, chef and owner of SPREAD, strives to create dishes that explore and showcase the rich diversity of our region’s resources, and to serve those dishes with the distinguished hospitality of the South. He draws on the inspiration of the surrounding area, and access to its ingredients in order to execute a cuisine that is honest, elevated, and thoughtful.

John began his culinary career just as the farm to fork movement was beginning to take shape. Prior to pursuing his dreams of becoming a chef, he managed several fine dining establishments in the Triad. There, he learned the finer points of service and the nuances of southern hospitality. After training in the kitchens of well respected regional chefs and gathering years of solid experience in NC cuisine, John was motivated to begin his solo career. He found an avenue of expression in catering that he wished to further explore. In 2012, he booked his first event for 200 people and hasn’t looked back.

SPREAD is a culmination of all the places and moments John has encountered in his journey to becoming a chef. The growth of the company mirrors his personal development in taste and palate through his ever evolving food experiences. Every dish that SPREAD has to offer is a reflection of the moment when a meal becomes its own language or conversation, allowing for an inclusive experience that transcends global barriers.


Director of Marketing, Operations and Event Coordination

Marilyn Tilley has spent almost two decades devoted to the food and beverage industry in North Carolina. These years have given her an unwavering sense of hospitality and dedication to detail. Her understanding of the craft of cooking, baking, and restaurant management led to an obsession with the flavor nuances in the almost infinite world of wine and cocktail development. This extensive experience is coupled with her deep sense of customer appreciation. The investment in her community’s sustainable food practices and cultural tradition defines her clear point of view.

Marilyn knows this trade because she has paid her dues — from dishwashing to floor management to event coordination. Her deep knowledge of wine and spirits, attention to detail, and intuitive nature make Marilyn exceptionally attuned to the small differences that separate a good experience from a truly memorable one.

This culmination of experience makes Marilyn an effective force in identifying your vision and a one stop shop for inspiration in event planning and coordination.

. . . AND YOU!

We couldn't do it without you...

Taking care of you and yours as the guests of SPREAD is what makes us happy and we couldn’t do it without you. We desire to offer you the opportunity to express yourself through our regionally influenced fare and intuitive southern hospitality. At SPREAD we do not define you, you define your experience and we make it happen. Each guest is an integral part of our company and vision. We take the time to build a sense of community with our clientele that share the same appreciation for locally driven cuisine and creative collaboration.

Every event is different, and that is what excites us. We take pride in our adaptability to meet the individual needs of our clients and the style of their event, no matter the occasion. You are the reason we do what we do. We look forward to meeting and taking care of you.  

The Southern food movement was a major inspiration in my early career and after much hard work and observation, I felt I had been awarded the tools and perspective to join the conversation surrounding Southern cuisine.
Chef and Owner of SPREAD
When I was three, I ate all of the mussels off of a paella at a family party. I can’t remember a time in my life that I wasn’t totally obsessed with food, recipes, and cultural traditions. I am extremely passionate about this industry and the sense of community it builds.
Director of Marketing and Operations
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