Passion and Purpose
Led by Bill Christine and Kirsten Mullen-Christine, Southern Farm Catering Co. creates custom-tailored menus, events, and experiences rooted in a love for their community.
by Erica Young

What would a bespoke dining experience look like to you? Would it be elevated fine dining, or a simpler affair with some knockout barbecue? No matter the preference, Southern Farm Catering Co. in Horsham aims to deliver. As a catering company with its own private dining room for special events, the husband-and-wife team of Bill Christine and Kirsten Mullen-Christine strive to create a one-of-a-kind experience for each client. 
Given its name, it should come as no surprise that Southern Farm Catering specializes in fine Southern-inspired cuisine—barbecue, chicken and dumplings, jambalaya, etc.—served with a heaping side of Southern hospitality. That said, the company has created menus featuring everything from pan-seared sea scallops and duck ravioli, to blueberry-and feta salad and vegetarian shepherd’s pie. Clients are limited only by their imagination. 
“Everything is completely made from scratch by my husband,” says Kirsten. “Every item is made to order, and everything he makes somehow seems to get better. We have been a team since the minute we met. Bill is very serious in the restaurant and I’m very not, and that allows us to give our best to both the food and our customers.”
The Christines met in the 1990s while working at Goodnoe Farm Dairy Bar in Newtown. They trace the beginning of their shared culinary quest to 2001, when Bill completed his studies at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. With a world of possibilities in front of him, Bill opened a business called Smoke’n Dudes Barbecue Co. with his father, Tom. They had a restaurant together when they won the crown as Pennsylvania State BBQ Champions. 
The family-owned business was known as Smoke’n Dudes from 2003 until 2021, when the enterprise was rebranded as Southern Farm Catering with Bill and Kirsten at the helm. Naturally, the business is known for its exceptional barbecue; one patron described Chef Bill’s barbecue as “literally the best in town.” Southern Farm Catering enables him to flex his barbecue chops, while also having fun with food through menus tailored to clients’ unique tastes and sensibilities.
“We’ve perfected barbecue, and we’re really good at it,” says Bill. “But we’re more into comfort food. I love to play in the kitchen, transforming comfort food into high-end dishes that can be customized for each customer.” 
During the week, Southern Farm Catering does most of its business through onsite corporate catering and pickup and delivery orders. On weekends, the company provides catering for backyard barbecues, graduations, showers, and other specials events, for which patrons can either pick up trays of food or have it delivered. 
Bill and Kirsten’s passion for the industry, love for each other, and sense of purpose have enabled their business enterprise to thrive. Their independence and enterprising nature means they have the nimbleness to offer first-class service with each dining experience they create.
“That dynamic makes us such a success,” Bill says. “Kirsten gets to work with our customers, and I get to take what I learn from her and create something new that no one expects. … Since the pandemic’s impact on the restaurant industry, people are looking for a place they love that they can trust. We have become that place for people.” 
While Southern Farm Catering is rooted in catering and special events, its 36-seat BYOB Farmhouse Room has become a destination for locals who want the ultimate culinary experience. The private room feels very much like someone’s home.
“People use our catering room as their special place,” Bill says. “They’ll rent out the space for an intimate dinner with friends or to celebrate different milestones, whether it’s something as big as a wedding or a casual birthday celebration. We have customers who continue to return for events and to celebrate with us. You can have reservations and make them at any time in our space a minimum of six people up to 36 people for any sort of event.”
“For us, our success is not just built into our food,” Kirsten adds. “It’s the attitude behind our business. Today everyone is so busy, and we find that true customer service is what gets hurt in that rush. We take that into consideration when we help our customers, whether that’s working with a barbecue dinner in our catering room or working around a customer’s unique delivery schedules.”
Southern Farm Catering regularly opens up the space to host charity dinners, serving various organizations with pop-up restaurant nights throughout the year. For example, they host an annual Anthony Bourdain Dinner, to honor the late chef and TV personality who died by suicide in 2018, as well as to commemorate family and friends of attendees and staff who have taken their lives.
A fellow CIA alumnus, Bourdain was a favorite of the Christine family. The reservation-only Anthony Bourdain Dinner not only gives Bill and Kirsten an opportunity to pay tribute to one of their heroes, but also raises funds and awareness to support the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The Christines partner with local culinary professionals in the area, with the chefs donating their time, talents, and more to make the evening a success. 
“This is our opportunity every year to celebrate a chef we love while also giving back to a community that means so much to us,” Kirsten says. “It’s been a really great event and a lot of fun, and allows us to get closer to our community.”
Tickets to the Anthony Bourdain Dinner can be purchased through the Southern Farm Catering website. The Christines remind anyone who is interested in attending the event to act quickly, as the event will very likely sell out. 
Southern Farm Catering’s Farmhouse Room creates memorable events all year long. Whether it’s for someone’s wedding rehearsal, baby shower, or milestone anniversary, or a special gathering in support of a philanthropic cause, guests are assured of exceptional cuisine, first-class hospitality, and an atmosphere designed to make them feel at home.
“We love focusing on these dinners and working with charities,” says Bill. “It makes us proud and gives us the chance to do what we love while helping the people we care about.”
Southern Farm Catering Co.
222 Horsham Road
Horsham, PA 19044
(267) 435-3276
Photo by Jody Robinson
Published (and copyrighted) in Suburban Life magazine, July 2023.