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Thread: Seriously..

  1. #11
    Senior Member brainsausage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tkern View Post
    Its good to know your enemy. Its lets you know what actually works for you.

    What is nice about hotel restaurant stuff is there is usually more money floating around so it gives you a chance to play with technology/products that you wouldn't get a chance to use in an independant setting. If having your own place eventually is what you want down the road, having that ability to test and experiment not on your dime gives you a good leg up.
    I agree with this up to a point. The restaurant that I'm a part of now started as a small art gallery across the street, that decided to serve food as an afterthought. 8 years later they moved into a larger venue, and when I started 4 years ago they were serving passable Spanish tapas, and fairly by the book Mediterranean style stuff. A lot of new guys started at the same time and we were given the opportunity to branch out, take some risks, and get creative. Lots of mistakes, but a few successes and we all started learning and developing a flow with eachother. The restaurant just bought a chamber vac, we have two immersion circulators, a huge dehydrator, ph testers, smoking guns, a dedicated curing room, multiple cords of different local woods for smoking, a now 2 year old sister restaurant, and a new place in the works. All because the owners(one a career line cook, the other an insurance guy- both down to earth and not rich by any means), decided to take some risks, foster a creative nurturing environment, and not be constantly looking over everyone's shoulder all the time. Healthy guidance, and critique. None of us are making the kind of money you would at hotel/chain etc. but we are all proud of our food and the restaurant's reputation. And they buy us cool toys like chamber vacs My situation isn't the case everywhere obviously, but I'd reccomend doing a couple stages at restaurants that you like. Get a feel for their kitchens, and engender a little good will if you do decide to apply for a job. If you can afford to run on a less hours for a bit- than now would be a good time to try that kind of a game plan. Btw- we're looking for a new grill cook down here in Maine pretty soon.... But seriously, I hope everything works out for you.

  2. #12
    Senior Member VoodooMajik's Avatar
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    I do plan on working my way south through the states before I go over seas. I have my eye on a few places, I just need to travel to Banff for the stages. Being Proud of what I'm cooking>cushions. I plan on working 2 jobs after here (I don't drive, so hour walk to town now) so I should have a little give as far as my wages go.
    It's not the Answer it's the Experience

  3. #13
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    Unionized workplaces

    Quote Originally Posted by knyfeknerd View Post
    Don't overthink or over analyze it. Just do a good job, don't complain to anyone, and keep your head up. Then, when the season is over get as far away from any union-ized kitchen as possible. You will have your pride and a good reference to boot.

    I didn't want to respond to this because of the anti-union bias that pervades some circles; plus I kind of like what you're trying to do with knife handles. I just xxd up another one.
    However: while I'm sure that in some places a union, and the people representing the union, can be a problem, sometimes joining or starting a union is the only was to protect yourself.
    It's kind of a do-it-yourself affair. But if you don't have a contract, and don't have the means to enforce it, you're at the employer's mercy. I am not unaware that this leads to a lot of abuse; slackers wrapping themselves in the flag etc., but there can be times when management rips you off; without a union contract, you have nothing.
    Not every restaurant owner is a saint (?). So do you want to kiss his toes or stand up to him? Assuming you do your job, that's no choice at all.

  4. #14
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    I wish I could leave this alone, as I'm sure it will further alienate members of this forum. But, I can't.
    How can any man seriously address another as "boss".
    When someone has knowledge to share, and offers it in a halfway respectful manner, that's fine. That's good. We all have a lot to learn.
    But when someone tells you what to do because he's the "boss" . . well, that's what knives are really for.

  5. #15
    Senior Member VoodooMajik's Avatar
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    Ha Ha, I've got a contract with the union, All that fun stuff. If they sign off for my payroll, Then I'll do whats asked of me. I tend to teach more then I learn here these days. We have had 5 cooks leave so far this season, some didn't even say anything, just stopped showing up. They still manage to keep me under 40 hours, very annoying. Time to start emailing off resume's and making phone calls..
    It's not the Answer it's the Experience

  6. #16
    Senior Member VoodooMajik's Avatar
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    So, I basically told one of my Sous's that "I moved from Toronto for this job and 28 hours isn't acceptable. I need to be busy and this is driving me crazy. Can this fixed and be explained to me"

    So they added another shift and sent me down to Cavell's our casual dining restaurant for half the day Let them know I was happy to be there and grateful for the extra hours I was given.
    It's not the Answer it's the Experience

  7. #17
    Senior Member Crothcipt's Avatar
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    so are you getting 32-34 hrs then? I am glad you worked this out. It sounds like you are also getting some time at different food too.
    Chewie's the man.

  8. #18
    Senior Member VoodooMajik's Avatar
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    Yeah, I've worked in every outlet of our kitchen but IRD. But it's a new menu and a welcome change. I'm sitting at about 35hrs, plus 6 at the little pub/store in our staff accom. Still not as much as I would like but aleast it will cover the bills and afford me to relocate to a busier place. (I'm thinking Banff because it's pretty busy and staff accom is still available.) I've also considered getting a third job barbacking at one of the clubs in town.

    Sometimes just enough has to be enough, but there is no point in complaining especially if you aren't going to fix it..
    It's not the Answer it's the Experience

  9. #19

    knyfeknerd's Avatar
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    Glad you worked it out and got something accomplished Voodoo. Try to keep with your plan of travelling and get around or out of the country if you can. Use your youth and enthusiasm to your advantage. Soon, age and tyranny will rule everyone's life.
    If "Its" and "Buts" was candy and nuts, we'd all have a Merry Christmas
    -Cleon "Slammin'" Salmon

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