Kilts in the kitchen?

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by macstrat, Jul 18, 2017.

  1. macstrat

    macstrat

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    Hello All. So I have a question about wearing kilts in a kitchen.

    I was talking to a friend of my mothers and she mentioned that her son was working in a kitchen, and then she brought up the fact that they were wearing kilts in the kitchen. After hearing this I was not only taken aback, but also voiced my concern for health, safety, and the sanitation of it. I would find it hard to believe a health inspector would pass that (I know mine wouldn't)

    If any of my staff showed up in kilts to work, they would be sent to change. I can understand the airflow aspect of it, but it just seems very unsafe and gross, tbh.

    Has anyone else heard of wearing kilts in a kitchen environment? What are your thought on it?

    BTW, this is a kitchen in America
     
  2. someday

    someday

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    I dunno, there are probably some minor-ish safety concerns, like the kilts getting stuck in oven doors, snagging, etc. I think it's unlikely to be a danger for catching fire or something like that. Maybe a small danger of skin exposed on the legs and oil or hot water splatter...probably not a HUGE risk.

    I don't think there are really any sanitation concerns...I don't get that.

    I've seen/heard of female chefs wearing skirts in the kitchen before, doesn't seem really any different than that. Obviously talking calf length skirts, not mini skirts or anything.

    Kilts probably wouldn't be my choice but I don't think I have a huge visceral negative reaction like you seemed to. Not really a big deal to me. I don't think I'd allow it in my kitchen but if it is the uniform at the place he works I don't see why not.
     
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  3. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Never heard of it before and never thought about it. I don't see why not either. But it does sound a bit too formal.
     
  4. chefross

    chefross

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    I would view kilts in the same manner as I would shorts.
    Someday, I do not understand your casual concerns. Being scalded by hot oil or water is not a minor-ish concern.
    Also the fact that hair is hair whether it is on the face or legs. It falls off, gets picked up by the wind and flies everywhere.
    For me, kilts or shorts do not belong in a kitchen.
     
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  5. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Back in the day when women did wear skirts in the kitchen, some kind of leg covering ( ie pantyhose, etc) was required as well.

    If you've ever splashed hot oil, steam, demi glace, caramel ( effin napalm, that stuff is, roux too) on your legs, you'll know why you don't wear shorts in the kitchen, and I see no difference between shorts and a kilt.

    If I see anyone in shorts/kilt draining out the fryer or the 80 qt steam kettle, I'll send them to the locker room to change
     
  6. macstrat

    macstrat

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    from what I gather, these are standard utility kilts, not much longer than knee length, top of calf
     
  7. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Oh, and I forgot to say, its pretty standard for most employers to insist on some kind of stocking/panty hose for f.o.h staff wearing skirts as well. Matter of fact most health inspectors insist on this, as well as no open-toed footwear.
     
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  8. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    Actually it is a common mistake to think that most health codes prohibit the wearing of open toed shoes. Most do not mention shoes at all. Now, I don't know what OSHA has to say about it, and I know my insurance company would probably have issues, but health codes that I know of, don't touch on the subject.
     
  9. someday

    someday

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    Being scalded by oil is not minor. Just to clarify I never said anything about being "scalded" or anything, I was talking about platter like from a saute pan or saucepan. I don't think I'm more likely to drop a pot of oil on my legs wearing a kilt vs wearing pants. If you go full on "scald" mode with something, i.e. you drop a bucket of boiling water or hot oil on your legs, you are probably f-d whether you are wearing pants or a kilt. A thin piece of cloth isn't going to stop that much oil or water. If I accidentally step in a stock pot of boiling oil up to my calf, probably won't matter too much if I've got a kilt or pants on.

    What I'm saying is the likelihood of it happening is a minor concern, i.e. it can happen, and might happen, but the likelihood is low. Kind of like a fatal car accident...we all drive everyday, and we all might die at anytime in a car, but I don't have it in my mind every time I leave the house.

    I don't see what is different about leg hair vs arm hair. Short sleeves/t shirts are worn in many kitchens. I don't think they are less sanitary than others. Is leg hair more likely to fly around than arm hair? Or beards?

    OK? I did't picture the kilts being halfway down the thigh...not "mini" kilts. My point was that plenty of female chefs wear skirts in the kitchen, and it is no big deal. A kilt, for all intents and purposes, is a skirt, so it shouldn't be much different. I agree that it is a different style for the kitchen, and I don't really see the point unless the owner has a Scottish fetish or abundance of pride or something, but I don't think it is really harmful or otherwise dangerous or inappropriate. Again, I wouldn't do it, personally, but in my mind it is NBD.
     
  10. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    Well if tradition has it men don't wear anything under the Kilt. That being said, I don't want the news people coming to my restaurant filming " Man burns pecker in fryer" More at 11......case closed!
     
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  11. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Hi billyb,

    What would be protocol on a burn like that? Do you strain the oil, or throw it out? Does the supervisor have to apply burn cream, or does the kilt wearer apply it himself?

    So many unanswered questions......much easiser to just wear pants and a long apron........
     
  12. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    Foodpump, going back years ago I was asked to setup and hire employees for a Waterpark. It was a high volume deal and all I could get for seasonal work was high school kids. In most cases that was fine, but they always had to be managed. On occasion, a mother of my fry cook came to me complaining about her son coming home with blisters on his fingers. After further drilling to get the truth from him he admitted to picking the floater fries out of the fryer with his fingers. He thought he could do it fast enough and not get burned.

    Back to the oil, it depends if its Peanut oil or Soy oil.
     
  13. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Have any of you guys worn a kilt before? I would be comfortable doing almost anything in a kilt except ride a motorcycle or climb a ladder. The thick fabric of a kilt may be even more protective than a pair of trousers when exposed to grease splatters, falling knives, etc.... underwear or not. By the way, I know enough cooks (male and female) who go commando to know that underwear wearing should not be assumed.
     
  14. someday

    someday

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    I know that you are joking, but the situations in which one would burn their "pecker" (haven't heard it called that in a LONG time) are pretty much identical wearing a kilt or pants...unless someone wants to teabag the hot oil. That person would have issues beyond fashion choice.
     
  15. Chrisopotamus

    Chrisopotamus

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    I can't find the rule (it's late) but I'm certain that Florida has a no open-toed policy in the kitchen. It's possible that it might be an OSHA requirement though.

    But... have you SEEN some people's toenails and feet? My body - I would require all that to be covered.
     
  16. Kiltedchef

    Kiltedchef

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    I'm not sure what this section is for.
    As my name would suggest, I do, in fact wear my kilts in the kitchens in which I work and have been for the last 7yrs. Firstly, there are no heath codes in which it would violate and as far as the issue of safety, its quite simple, don't be an idiot. I mean most professional cooks and chefs are always safe in our environs. Lastly, as far as sanitation, I do not understand your concern but I will say that I find your overall attitude toward the matter to be quite closeminded and puerile. I would suggest that you look more closely at the culture of the kilted masses and perhaps give wearing one a try some day.
     
  17. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Ummm.... accidents happen because they ARE accidents. I burnt my leg pretty badly because the rivets popped and the bail failed on the s/s bucket designated for fryers. I like to think I took every precaution, but sh*t happens. I can kick off my shoes and yank off my pants pretty darn fast, but if I don't have pants to yank off, the burns on my leg will be worse and take longer to heal......
     
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  18. meezenplaz

    meezenplaz

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    One also needs to consider the type of material being worn. Cotten for instance, will wick oil and water pretty instantly.
    My understanding is that kilts, and the over-the-calf socks often worn with them are made of wool which wicks quite poorly. I would consider that a safer material to wear in the kitchen albeit probably hotter.
     
  19. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Knee length woolen socks? I wear those for outdoor winter activities. There goes the arguement for whsts cooler to wear in the kitchen.

    Wonder ehst Gorfon Ramsey's take is on this? He didn't move out od Scotland until he was in his late teens....
     
  20. meezenplaz

    meezenplaz

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    well what can I say, in the commercial inferno environment, maximum safety
    and maximum comfort are often on
    opposite sides of the arena.