I have staged at two upscale restaurants, one for 3 months 1 day a week and the other 2 days a week for a month. I had no trouble contacting them via email, responded right away and was in the kitchen within a week. I am starting to think I got very lucky at these places because I can't get other restaurants to stage at. I am looking for another place to stage uncompensated to hone my skills but for some reason I am finding it very hard just to get in touch with the chef, sous or kitchen manager. Email I get no response which I half expected. Calling I get some server who takes my name and number but never get a call back or I get "the chef says we are not taking interns at the moment". I tried walking into a place hours before service on a Sunday and asked to see the chef to no avail. Didn't even take a name or number. I don't know what other avenue to take, maybe just keep doing what I'm doing and hopefully one place will be interested? I know not to call or show up during service or even attempt to make contact on Friday or Saturday. I had it so easy with the other two places I don't know what else to do.