greetings all

Discussion in 'New User Introductions' started by markface, Aug 12, 2003.

  1. markface

    markface

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    hey yall , i'm new here so i figure this is the place to start .

    my name is mark and i have been working as a short order cook in virginia beach virginia for about a year now . i have never been to any type of formal cooking schools or classes , but have been cooking since i was old enough to walk . i find that after going through many different careers , i think i have found my true calling .

    i just found this site a couple days ago and have been browsing through the posts , it really seems like a nice site . very informative , and friendly .
     
  2. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Hi Markface, and welcome to Chef Talk. We are what you see: friendly, excited about food and the culinary world, and eager to learn and share with each other.

    Being on the Virginia coast, I'm guessing your restaurant has some great seafood and perhaps a number of Southern dishes, too. Please tell us what you've got going there, and anything else you'd like to share about your cookin' self.

    Welcome!
    Mezzaluna
     
  3. markface

    markface

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    well , lets see . the place i'm working is actually a bar , but we have a pretty good food selection . it ranges from the regular bar munchies(ie; cheese sticks , chicken planks , fries and such) to a variety of sea food such as fried or grilled scallops , fried flounder , grilled tuna , shrimp scampi , calamari and so forth . we do several italian dishes , steaks , chops , hand pressed burgers , hand chopped bar-b-q and even our own version of a philly cheese steak . every day we do several specials ranging from meatloaf to mahi ma to home made chicken pot pie . on saturday nights we do prime rib , and sunday morning an all you can eat brunch .

    almost everything we sell (except said munchie foods) is made fresh in house . we cut all our own steaks , and chops in house , and i couldn't tell you how many pounds of shrimp i have peeled and devained over the last year .

    i'm the primary night cook and work 5 nights and 1 day a week. we usually have 2 cooks during the day , and 1 at night except friday and saturday night we run 2 cooks . our lunch rush can be pretty hectic(i'm glad i only do one a week) , and its not unusual for us to put out 130 to 150 meals in a 3 hour period( i dont know if this is a lot compared to other places as i have no other experience to go by) . on week nights ( i work a 5 hour shift plus clean up time) i average 40 or 50 meals plus an assortment of munchies . on saturday nights we'll do 80 to 120 meals over a 7 hour shift .

    when my boss bought this place from his father 4 years ago their food sales were approx 25 percent of total sales . a year ago food accounted for about 55 percent of sales . this last year food accounted for just under 70 percent of sales .

    all the cooks do prep work through out the week , and we do all our own dishes . we're not really big enough to hire actual dish washers .

    the kitchen is about the size of an average bathroom , and has very little room for actual movement . although we do have pretty good facilities as far as equipment goes .

    i'll be the first to admit i am no chef , but according to my boss who has been working in the buisness for 20 some years , i am a pretty good short order cook . i have worked as an auto mechanic , a live sound reinforcement technician(roadie) , bouncer and a few other profesions . this is the first job i have really enjoyed enough to see as a permanent career . i'm probably a bit older than most starting cooks(pushing 40 real hard), but i figure age doesnt matter when you find something that works well for you , you do it .

    i can see there is a lot of really good info here that i hope to delve into , and i hope in turn to be able to ad my small bit of knowledge to the pot so to speak .
     
  4. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Good to have you with us, Markface. Thanks for the info. Great description of the place. You must be doing something right to come up with sales numbers like that.
     
  5. isa

    isa

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    Welcome to Chef Talk Mark, nice to meet you. :)
     
  6. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    Hey Mark, want a job?!! Sounds like you are doing quite a job over there. I would kill to find cooks like you!!! BTW, welcome to cheftalk.
     
  7. markface

    markface

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    most of the credit for the success of the restuant is due to my cousins husband(my boss) . he's the one that set the menu and runs the kitchen . i just cook , prep , clean , gripe at the wait staff , and try to put out the same quality food that the boss insists on .

    i find i work best under pressure , and cooking seems to be a very high pressure job , so it works well for me . I'll be the first to admit i'm a very lazy person , so i figure if i do things fast and efficently , then i can relax afterward with out worrying about having to redo anything .

    i am flattered by the offer , and i am actually looking for a new job , but would like to stay in this area . although i love working here the money is about what burger flippers make at mc donalds . now that i have a bit of exp in a kitchen i figure it will be easier to find the next cooking job .
     
  8. mike

    mike

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    Respect to you Mark, if you can handle the numbers then you will always make a good cook. A cook can refine & learn his technique but if he cant do the numbers he aint a cook.

    Good luck to you.
     
  9. markface

    markface

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    Mike , not sure what you mean by handling the numbers , or doing the numbers . if you mean keeping up with the orders as they come back , then yeah for the most part i seldom get very far behind the demand , and i'm getting faster everyday . like i said before i've been cooking almost my whole life , but it was more a hobby than anything else . i have always considered myself to be a fair cook at home , but it really amazes me how much faster and more precise i have gotten in the time since i started working in a proffesional capacity . i said it before , but i will reiterate it , i know i'm no where near being a chef , but my boss thinks i'm doing very well as a cook .
     
  10. chefgirlrd

    chefgirlrd

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    Welcome!
    Have a good time on the boards, They are full of information.
    :D