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8 Myths About Working In A Restaurant [Moved from Los Angeles Area board]

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Eight Myths About Working in a Restaurant
Written by Whitnee Haston
www.cookingrevealed.com

8. It’s all about the after party. Seriously, after a busy night of cooking 200 plus covers (people served) the last thing you want to do is have to go to a bar with your greasy hair and clothes that smell like a deep fryer.

7. You get to eat whatever you want. Not true at all, in fact in some places if you are caught eating the good product then you are out of there. Restaurants are all about making money and if the staff is eating the profit then there is no money to be made. Also, after making that dish 50 times in row, the last thing you want to do is eat it.

6. You thought you could see the faces of the patrons. Think again! You are stuck in the kitchen. You live in the kitchen.

5. You get to be creative. What you have to realize is that the menu was probably put into place before you began working there. Don’t think you can just come in and tell the chef that such-and-such is wrong with their menu. You will get no brownie points for that stunt.

4. I’m going to be rich. Unless you have been in the game for a while don’t expect to get paid. If you work at an extremely upscale restaurant most cooks come in a little early and work for free, worst of all it is usually expected that you will do that.

3. It’s easy, all your doing is cooking some food. If only it was that simple. Most cooks arrive 3-4 hours before the restaurant opens to do all the prep that goes into each dish. You have to realize that usually each dish comes with at least three items on the plate plus the sauce and the garnish. Prep is the key. And I don’t think you want me to talk about all the clean up.

2. All Chefs scream and carry on like Gordan Ramsey. While you can work with a chef that yells A LOT, they usually don’t end up throwing the food right back in your face. I think most chefs have realized that those antics don’t really work on the younger generation of cooks

1. It is so glamorous. Working in a kitchen is anything buy glamorous, unless you are the executive chef who rarely ever gets in the trenches and cooks with his cooks.

At this point you may be asking yourself, Why does she do it? Why does she put up with all this torture? First of all I love working with food and there is a little creativity. Call me masochistic, but I love the stress and the speed of the kitchen. I love that everything has to be put together in a mater of minutes. And I love, love, love that at the end of the day I know that I have accomplished something. I see the tangible evidence in front of me completed and patrons satisfied.

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  1. This was pretty good, but should be called "8 myths about working Back of House in a Restaurant".

    As a lifer (23 years and counting) in the business, maybe I should do the "Front of the House" version...

    Nice post.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Dave and Stuff

      Dave and Stuff... you and I can get together to write the "front of the house" version!

      1. re: Dave and Stuff

        Yeah, number 8 probably wouldn't apply to FOH. Best thing after serving demanding customers all night? Go to a BMW restaurant and get waited on!

        That was the most dangerous part about being paid in cash....

      2. I have to admit that while 1-7 are relatively true, I don't entirely agree with 8. I normally don't care how dirty I look when I go to the bar or a party after work, although I'll occasionally bring a change of clothes and some deodorant.

        Well, at least I'm not an alcoholic...

        2 Replies
        1. re: Blueicus

          After getting out of the business after 15 years, there were two things that I was not prepared for (seriously).

          First, actually having evenings, weekends, and holidays off! Being able to join a softball team in the evenings.

          Second, coming home and not having the need to take a shower and change clothes immediately.

          WOW!

          1. re: jlawrence01

            We actually still recommend you showering when you get home...

            ;)