Chef de cuisine vs executive chef?

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by bethap, Nov 18, 2005.

  1. bethap

    bethap

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    What is the difference between an executive chef and a chef de cuisine? I'm thinking an executive chef is the one in charge of everyone, but I may be wrong. Thanks.
     
  2. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Chef de cuisine is a "cooking chef". In large hotels the Exec. is (as Anthony Bourdain puts it) a "traffic controller". Mostly logistics, staffing, ordering, and new projects. The Chef de cusine is the flashy cook who wows everyone with his great stuff in the high-end dining room.
     
  3. chefatl

    chefatl

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    Chef de Cuisine usually runs the kitchen of a restaurant when the Exec is over several restaurants or is high profile and doesn't spend much time in the kitchen. Exec Sous would basically be in the same position.
     
  4. danbrown

    danbrown

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    Sometimes my ego needs a reminder as to why I need to shut up.

    Calledito mas bonito (I'm much better looking when I'm silent).

    My Exec is high profile, and that helps the business, so I'm keeping my Chef de Cuisine title, and shutting the **** up about it.
     
  5. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Titles titles. :) In general, Exec. implies more than one outlet.

    Actually it bugs me when people call themselves the exec. chef and they don't know how to roll baguettes.
     
  6. mannyc

    mannyc

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    A Chef de Cuisine is simply a chef that has attained the highest ranking in cooking. An Executive Chef is one, usually at a very large kitchen who is in charge of all personnel, food selection, cooking methods, budget, etcetera and no longer a working chef.

    I should note that nowadays too many cooks are calling themselves Executive Chef where the establishment is actually just a restaurant with a minimal staff. Unfortunately there is no standard to say who can call themselves chef, executive chef, chef de cuisine, on and on.

    For example, when I worked as a sous chef under Executive Chef Charles Gauthier, formerly of the Mission Inn in Riverside, CA we had at our medium sized hotel outside of Disneyland in the mid 1960's a staff of only about twelve cooks and when he came on board he was allowed to keep his former title at the renounced Mission Inn but otherwise our size of staff really called for a working chef. I would say that an Executive Chef is a person who is trained in cooking and commands a very large staff and works at an establishment that has several restaurants and other food outlets, for instance the Hilton Hawaiian Village with at least seven restaurants, banquet facilities for thousands, plus pool service, room service. Get the idea?
     
  7. wlong

    wlong

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    @MannyC   You might revive it, but this thread had not had any remarks in the past 9 years.
     
  8. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Maybe so, but the information contained in it is still viable not to mention that in the last hour and a half the thread has seen an increase in remarks of 60% and who knows how many views without remarks in the last 9 years, although it has had 15,288 views since it's inception. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/chef.gif
     
  9. mbyrne

    mbyrne

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    Yes, actually found reading it very useful!
     
  10. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    A Sous Chef is the one that does all the dirty work for the Chef. He/she tell everyone what to do and blames it on the Chef.

    A Chef, Tell everyone what to do. When you ask why he/she throws them out the back door mumbling, I don't have time for this shit.

     The Exec Chef is the Chef who tells management he/she's not making enough money at his/her chef position for the money he/she is making. The management has a long meeting (Nap) and comes back with the Exec Chef position that doesn't get he/she anymore money but has to work more hours a week. This leaves the Chef  that is now Exec Chef, walking out the door scratching their head wondering what the hell happened. 

    The Chef Chef de Cuisine, is the Chef that went through all the other chef positions that I post above. He/she is now happier than a pig in shit because they are able to do what they really love, cook.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2016
  11. foodpump

    foodpump

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    I'm sticking to my definition, the one I wrote back in '05......
     
  12. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Chef de Cuisine is really the bomb job man.
     
  13. linecook854

    linecook854

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    A little side note about my experience with titles in one of my former kitchens:

    I, the sous chef was responsible for nearly 100% of day to day responsibilities with lazy, minimally skilled but classically trained staff. Extremely under paid, way overworked and thrown to the wolves any chance possible. Not an exaggerated or bitter evaluation, that's truly how it was unfortunately.

    The executive chef made the schedule, ordered 50% of food (I did the other half) was responsible for food and labor costs, literally that's it. Not involved in the day to day aspect at all. Was paid well for minimal hours (she would average 40 hours per week, many weeks she would stay home 3 days a week!) and had good benefits, minimal stress and a feather light workload.

    The chef de cuisine spent his entire day in a corner and played with modernist cuisine methods (which never were applied to any menu items), occasionally made a staff meal, would make a small dent in function prep. Never ordered, never worked the line, had more or less zero responsibilities because everything he did was focus on playing around with things he would NEVER finish or apply to the menu. He would contribute a couple of mediocre dishes every menu change and never factor in things like execution or food costs on these menu items, needless to say every dish he made was too costly or was ill thought out (literally 20 components on a pasta entree that was a complex mess). He was paid almost as much as the head chef but didn't have as many benefits. Come to find out the executive chef and chef de cuisine were once dating so hence the extremely cushy job he was given. This guy was the saddest excuse of any kitchen position I have ever seen in all my years of cooking, he was completely incapable of contributing anything.

    Needless to say my experience with "titles" meant nothing in this kitchen because the entire workload was put onto one person. Be VERY careful when accepting a salaried position and make sure your the extent of your responsibilities are in black in white other wise your "title" could mean anything. In my case it meant I was doing more or less everything.
     
    chef servo likes this.
  14. chefross

    chefross

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    Nothing new under the sun here.

    Happens all the time.

    Overpaid, under-experienced, lazy, mean, egotistical, the list goes on.

    Been there.

    Done that.
     
  15. phaedrus

    phaedrus

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    I suppose CDC is a better way to describe my job than Exec but I think it makes the owner feel better to call me an Exec Chef./img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif   I've been called 'Chef' more at four months at this job than in the rest of my chef career combined!  Funny, I'm totally fine with just being called by my name. Although I get a serious chuckle out of being called 'jefe', too./img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif
     
  16. jimyra

    jimyra

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    Chef de cuisine vs executive chef?  According to the American Culinary Federation textbook, Culinary Fundamentals, they are the same person.  Chef de cuisine is french and executive chef is english for the same position.  In a hotel the executive chef normally reports to the Food and Beverage Manager.
     
  17. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    from the ACF website http://www.acfchefs.org/ACF/Certify/Levels/ACF/Certify/Levels/#cp

    Certified Chef de Cuisine® (CCC®): A chef who is the supervisor in charge of food production in a foodservice operation. This could be a single unit of a multi-unit operation or a free-standing operation. He or she is in essence the chef of the operation with the final decision-making power as it relates to culinary operations.

    Certified Executive Chef® (CEC®): A chef who is the department head usually responsible for all culinary units in a restaurant, hotel, club, hospital or foodservice establishment. In addition to culinary responsibilities, other duties include budget preparation, payroll, maintenance, controlling food costs and maintaining financial and inventory records.
     
  18. jimyra

    jimyra

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    cheflayne,

         That's interesting, they say one thing in their textbook used at many universities, and then post something different on their website.  Which one is correct?  
     
  19. alaminute

    alaminute

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    Yeah I always understood it to be opposite. In fact I've always had CDC's of my restaurants who would have weekly meetings with the executive chef who oversaw all the restaurant concept operations.
     
  20. chefross

    chefross

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    All true, however; outside of the ACF in the un-organized, un-certified, and un-professional world of restaurants and other food related places, please realize that these are simply names handed out to make the employee feel important.

    Chef de Cuisine may be another name for the Sous Chef in some places, while the Executive Chef would probably be the one in charge of the whole picture as the boss.