Cheryl Phillips Raiken
Owner, Chef
Cheryl has been cooking most of her life for family and friends, starting as a young child by pulling a chair up to the stove to cook with her mother and grandmothers while growing up in Brooklyn, New York. The neighborhoods of the city and boroughs provided a rich kaleidoscope of ethnic foods, fresh local seafood, farm stand vegetables and regional specialties of the Northeast.

She received both a BFA in Design and BArch from Pratt Institute in New York, and studied Urban Design at Harvard's, GSD. Her studies took her to live and study in the Mediterranean region to research indigenous architecture and culture, which included learning to cook the classic, fresh and healthful foods of Greece, Cyprus and Israel. Through her travels and experience, she developed a highly educated palate and a lifelong passion for the culinary arts.

In 1993, Cheryl made a career change that led her and husband Dean to start their first catering venture in San Diego. Together they introduced a high level of quality boardroom catering and innovative fresh foods for private entertaining. Her design and planning skills are often called upon for inventive use of space and flow for private parties and corporate events. Metro Catering's creative menus are a reflection of Cheryl's knowledge of diverse foods and an educated palette.

Included in Metro Catering's client list are San Diego's top corporations, research and educational institutes, biotech and pharmaceutical companies, real estate development companies and financial, arts institutions. National organizations visiting San Diego as a destination for conferences call on Metro Catering to provide fresh food and honest service. Private events include dinner and celebrations for Royalty, international artists and political candidates for national and local elections.

Cheryl regularly mentors young adults and takes pride in their accomplishments as they journey through her kitchen.

Dean Raiken
Owner, Managing Partner
Dean Raiken brings over 20 years of sales and management experience in the catering industry to Metro Catering in San Diego.

Originally from Philadelphia, Dean Raiken grew up in a family where great food was the center of celebrations and family gatherings. While getting a degree in music at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, Dean apprenticed with a prominent Philadelphia Main Line caterer and Chef Tell Erhardt at the famed Manor House. He later moved to New York City where he performed on Broadway and at exclusive high society events, and became a skilled manager in high-end retail fashion. His rapport with top musicians allows Metro Catering and their clients to be on the cutting edge of cultural experiences.

In 1993, Dean introduced a new catering trend to San Diego- bringing fresh, healthful foods into the boardroom, which raised the bar in the corporate catering arena. In 1996, he pioneered special themed, wine pairing dinners in private venues and embarked on a journey to become a student of the fine wines of California and international wine making regions. His wealth of knowledge in wine and food pairings brings a special element to the parties he helps to plan.

Dean will ensure a seamless experience that will allow you to enjoy your event with complete satisfaction by providing customers with quality, creativity, insight and a commitment to serving the best tasting food.

He supports local organizations including the Southern Caregivers Resource Center, and The San Diego Biotech Discussion Group. He is a member of BNI International and has served as president of his local chapter.