First Day on the Line

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by tglo, Feb 11, 2010.

  1. tglo


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    Part of my college degree was spent studying RHIM.

    I have had front and back of the house jobs. Usually the intro stuff you do in college . . . low man on the totum pole. The most cooking experience I have . . . outside of culinary classes that are essentially recipe marithons. I worked as a cook to order breakfast cook in a small hotel. Usually with a kitchen staff of 3 people.

    What I am lacking is a frame of reference for the really high end high staff line. And I am starting as the lowest man on the line tomorrow in a high staff higher profile establishment. I lack knowledge of the structural hierarchy and such. And what is a really common beginners mistake in that setting?

    I have some legitimate qualifications on my resume and schooling. But I don't think there is any way to get around the fact that I will probably have a big ROOKIE written on my forehead.

    Anything I can do to get some extra brownie points?

    It is Greek cuisine. With a sizeable staff and decent reputation.

    I have never been in a crunch kitchen. And really have not been properly taught the hierarchal structure of a formal and more professional line.

    I am not worried about doing the work and learning the menu as I have always been able to cook. But looking like a duck out of water.

    What can I expect on my first day?

    I am a bit nervous. Can anyone offer any advice? Any big NO's? Any special culinary equipment I should know of for greek cuisine? I was told there is alot of variation to meats and temperatures and such that are crucial. I understand that is normal with any food to prevent food poisoning. But it was explained as considerably more complex than that.

    Can you explain line heirarchy?
  2. leeniek


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    Professional Chef
    You've probably already experienced it but I can explain the line a little.  Most of my culinary experience has been in smaller kitchens and at one place I was the kitchen as I was the only cook.  (it was a 25 seat cafe but in the warmer months we doubled our seating with the patio)

    In our kitchen now (and I have to say it is the biggest one I have ever worked in) we have in the order of the chain of command

    KM or Kitchen Manager/Chef
    AKM or  Assistant Kitchen Manager/Sous  (me)
    KS or Kitchen Supervisor (soon to be taken off of the roster and the position will be replaced only on a need basis and we will give the person a shift premium for the days he has to run the line and we have already chosen someone)
    Line Cook and Fruiter

    So that is our kitchen.  I know bigger kitchens have bigger brigades so hopefully someone here can explain the larger kitchen to you.