From fine dining to institutional, help.......

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Joined Mar 9, 2000
Well, I've done it, I accepted a really stable well paying 40hr. a week state cooking job in exchange for my late hour, weekends, funky schedule fine dining gig. The reason is that because of other obligations I don't have a very flexible schedule so I can't ever hope of being an Exec Chef or moving into managment at the hotel or restaurant level, and I don't want to get hammered on the line til I'm fifty! I can advance at the institutional level, so I took it. Is there any Chefs who have made this transition out there? After 17 yrs. of gourmet I think it's going to be culture shock city, help!

[This message has been edited by chefjohnpaul (edited September 16, 2000).]
 
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Joined Aug 11, 2000
Oh Chefjohnpaul....
Make it a game, I just about went around the bend in DeRidder La (10,000 in the middle of no where) There are so many things that you can accept as a challenge to tweek or rework or to organize in a totally different way....
Improve where you are and remember if it's really yuccky there are always other places to be. Don't live unhappy with 40 hours a week of your life....IT WILL SHOW TO YOUR LOVED ONES.
 
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Joined Mar 9, 2000
Hey, thanks Shroomgirl. I'm actually looking forward to the challenge and I don't think I'll hate it at all, I just have never worked at the institutional level before and I know it will be an adjustment, I just wanted to get some tips on those who have made the transition. I'm actually very happy and can't wait because in the long run the bennies far outway the sacrifice, plus I still have a consulting gig at a little intimate bistro, so whenevr I gotta get it out of my system... Thanks again!
 
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Joined Dec 8, 1999
With the consulting on the side, you'll be fine. While working at a country club, one of the former sous chefs used to come in and play with us. He had moved into research and development for Buffets, Inc. He said working at the club was, aside from the extra money, an opportunity to do real cooking for a change.
 

nicko

Founder of Cheftalk.com
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I can totally relate chefjohnpaul! Your situation is one that I think is very familiar to many of us. Most of my friends all moved on from the fine dining gig to either large coporate places or teaching. After I came back from France I went to work for a large museum here in Chicago and it was a total shock. I went from serving 40-50 people a night to serving cocktail parties for 3000. I wasn't the fine detailed work that I think we all enjoy, still it was an amazing time of learning. Just try to look at it as a different side of the business that you can gain experience. You can always venture back into the gourmet arena.

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Thanks,

Nicko
[email protected]
 

nicko

Founder of Cheftalk.com
Staff member
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Joined Oct 5, 2001
Haven't left yet Chefjohnpaul, the wedding is this Saturday, and we are leaving for Greece on Sunday. I don't think I will be able to log in from the islands, but I know you guys can hold down the fort till I am back. Thanks to all who make this such a great place to hang out, and keep the disucssions so interesting.

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Thanks,

Nicko
[email protected]
 
281
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Joined Mar 9, 2000
Well Chefs, thanks for the encouragement. I started my new institutional job, and well...
I LOVE IT! And there is suprising creative leway that I didn't think would be there, plus 1/4 the stress of the private sector, plus reasonable hours! I should have done this years ago! If you see any fat and happy patrol officers on the California Highways, you'll know why!
 
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