Language Requirements

Joined Jul 28, 2015

I'm still in the early stages of my professional cooking career and am thinking about where to go when I leave my current job. The prospect of of getting my formal training done in France really appeals to me but I don't know what to expect from cooking abroad, specifically the language requirements. I'd expect that the language spoken in a French kitchen is French, but is fluency required? Before I started cooking I took some French language classes and got to a comfortable level for normal conversation so I do have some knowledge of the language, though it is rusty. A tentative plan I've thought of is to enroll in a short culinary program ~6weeks at a school like Institut Paul Bocuse in Lyon which would give me time to brush up on the language and also time to make some connections to chefs over there. Does anyone who has cooked abroad have any advice?

Joined Jun 5, 2015
I have some experience working in a kitchen full of spanish speaking cooks and chefs. The incredible thing is that the majority spoke english, others spoke mandarin and one even spoke russian. Certainly the language is a big barrier in terms of fully understading the orders your chef gives you. But look at at this way, how many young cooks follow their passion and go to France to work? You'd think these chefs would be used to foreigners by now to the point of having the patience to teach them despite the language barrier? Good luck!

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