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Pabloz

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As a new kitchen knife maker I would like to experience the full length, breadth, and width of kitchen knife use, care, and maintenance. What I am thinking is to find a high volume restaurant and work the prep station (protein and veggie) for a few days to a week. What I would like from all you professionals is the insider information on HOW to approach the exec. chef and propose my time (uncompensated) for training and coaching and time at the station during the worst hours. I will be looking for a high end, high volume, high intensity opportunity -- I don't think it will be hard to find here since we have 7 casinos (one is a Hard Rock) within 15 miles of where I live, as well as several popular Brazilian style and "comida a la corrida" gourmet shops. I truly want this to be a very successful experience for all involved. All suggestions are invited and welcomed. Also, I am very well connected to one of the "celebrity" chef instructors at the college where I teach... not sure if that's a consideration

Thanks in advance for your time and attention... looking forward to some good ideas.
 

Hattorichop

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Sounds like a step in the right direction for a new knife maker.

I have no advice for you, but kudos to you for taking on such a venture with little training!
 

sachem allison

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Some of Us executive chefs are pretty open about getting free help, just ask you might be surprised. Hey a free prototype thrown into the mix always sweetens the pot.lol Chefs in New Mexico are usually pretty laid back. I mean you might get that one douche, but you can always go somewhere else. Also, we like giving our opinions on things. You never know until you ask. Find out who your local ACF ( American Culinary federation)members are and ask them, they network with each other and maybe able to help you out.

ACF Rio Grande Valley Chapter
Casey Trent NM
Phone: (505) 217-6323
ACFRioGrande.Director@gmail.com



hope this helps
son
 

Pabloz

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I sure hope I'm not on a Kamakaze mission as I'm 51 getting close to 52....but I did survive the 40's w/a teenage wild child daughter. According to a friend that praticed at the Mayo clinic, men are most likely to have a heart attack in their 40's. OH hell...I can can handle it!!
 

echerub

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Good for you, Paul! You're going to get a real appreciation for what works in a knife design and what doesn't.
 

sachem allison

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I sure hope I'm not on a Kamakaze mission as I'm 51 getting close to 52....but I did survive the 40's w/a teenage wild child daughter. According to a friend that praticed at the Mayo clinic, men are most likely to have a heart attack in their 40's. OH hell...I can can handle it!!

I had my first two at 33 and my last one last christmas at 36 I know what you mean
 

Pabloz

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Sachem,
Thanks....we did host ACF event here last year...unfortunately I could not attend, and THANK YOU for the local ACF directors contact info. I certainly appreciated you putting for the effort!!!
 

sachem allison

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Sachem,
Thanks....we did host ACF event here last year...unfortunately I could not attend, and THANK YOU for the local ACF directors contact info. I certainly appreciated you putting for the effort!!!
no problem, that's what I do.lol
 

Eamon Burke

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Brush up on your knife skills and get a food handlers cert. I know my kitchen would let you come in andhack yo foods for a few hours for free.
 

kalaeb

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You may have to steer clear of corporate places, most (at least every one that I have run) would have a policy against working for free for liability reasons.
 

ThEoRy

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The free labor and freebie knife are a good start. Call around and see if anyone sounds interested in giving you a working interview (about 4 hours) and take it from there. You don't want to dive head first into the shallow end. Make sure you guys like each other first you know? Good luck!!
 

Pabloz

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Brush up on your knife skills and get a food handlers cert. I know my kitchen would let you come in andhack yo foods for a few hours for free.
I did take the food safety course a year or so ago and passed the "ServSafe" exam....i may have to do the whole state food handler thing just to be legal. We'll see.....
 

Pabloz

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The free labor and freebie knife are a good start. Call around and see if anyone sounds interested in giving you a working interview (about 4 hours) and take it from there. You don't want to dive head first into the shallow end. Make sure you guys like each other first you know? Good luck!!
Yes sir...I do know what you mean. I will probably look for a referral based on the above criteria and narrow the list after some phone calls...If bad get to worse there are always the garage band, early AM roachcoach GIGs...eh.
 

tk59

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Sounds like a nice idea but with a lot of hassle. I think the experience would be limited without trying different knives, too.
 

Chef Niloc

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You may have to steer clear of corporate places, most (at least every one that I have run) would have a policy against working for free for liability reasons.
Very true

Maybe there are some adult education classes around by you? Good way to pick up some knife skills and maybe learn a few good recipes? More likely to pick up bad knife habits at a restaurant then good ones. Restaurant good place to "practice" cutting things as there is always lots of stuff to cut, but the "how's" and "whys" are not something you will find there. Your friend that's a culinary teacher sounds like your best bet. He could show you a few things and likely set you up at a restaurant to play at afterwords. Or you could always come to new york? I love to get back down south some time soon, to answer one of your previous questions I use to live and work in Santa fe at the compound and Richard's In Albuquerque. Lived and cooked in Arkansas for 6 years, new Orleans for 5 years.
 

JohnnyChance

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Others have given good advice for getting into a pro kitchen. Another option would be a soup kitchen, you probably wouldn't learn a lot from an experienced chef like at a regular restaurant, but they would love the free labor, and there would probably be all the onions and potatoes that you can cut.
 

stevenStefano

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It is a very interesting and commendable idea, but are you sure you really need to do it? I think a lot of makers just lend local chefs their knives and get feedback from there. Are there even any pros who post here who would be able to help you in this regard? It is a really cool idea and I think you're pretty brave, but I think you'd be doing someone a massive favour that wouldn't really be returned. A lot of chefs are pretty clueless about knives so any feedback they might give you might not be very useful. I'd only do it if I knew the Chef really really well or if they had a good interest in knives
 

Pabloz

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Dear All,
Thank you very much for your time and replies. I will be contacting my culinary connection at the college and setting up a one on one training session with him....and them?????

Colin,
I will get there one way or another.....meeting you face to face IS on my bucket list.

Thank y'all again very much.
 

Andrew H

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I don't think you have to have great knife skills to know what works and what doesn't. If I were you, Paul, I would buy a 50lb bag of potatoes and a 50lb bag of onions and go to town. You'd get a basic idea of what you want in a knife pretty quickly, in my opinion.
 

jmforge

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That and working for free is illegal. :lol2:
You may have to steer clear of corporate places, most (at least every one that I have run) would have a policy against working for free for liability reasons.
 

Pabloz

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Thanks all. The plan now is to get a bag of onions, potatoes and carrots and do the a volunteer project for our local VA center. I'll get some coaching by my instructor friend w/a variety of his favorite knives, one of which is an older (2002 vintage) Kramer. I really just want to put myself in y'alls shoes so I know what you go through....more or less....prolly..LESS.
 

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