Staffing a BBQ Restaurant kitchen

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by Mehran Mikail, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Mehran Mikail

    Mehran Mikail

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    I am opening a BBQ restaurant in a small strip center. Almost done with construction and should get the final inspections and C.O. soon and hoping for a March opening. I have already started interviewing GM candidates. Counter service only with about 100 seats. Staffing cashier's, runners and bussers is pretty straight forward. But my dilemma is the kitchen. Opening hours are from 11 AM to 8 or 9 PM, closed Mondays. With beef brisket requiring 14 hours or more cooking, how do you plan for staffing the kitchen? For lunch service at 11, briskets have to go in the commercial smokers (Southern Pride) around 7 or 8 PM max, taken out and wrapped around 11 PM,and then left overnight to finish cooking. I do not like to hold the same overnight cooked brisket for 8 hours or more for dinner service, so probably have to start another batch around 3 or 4 AM for dinner service.

    How do I staff for that? I was thinking about hiring a pit master from 7 PM to 3 AM. He can start the lunch batch in the smokers, work on prepping and seasoning the dinner batch, take the lunch batch out at 11 pm, wrap and put back in smokers, do more prep work for next day, put the dinner batch in at 3 AM and then go home. Morning crew to come in at 6 or 7 AM to take out the dinner batch wrap and put back in smokers, and then get ready for lunch service. Does that sound like viable plan?

    Any BBQ restaurant owners or chefs here that can share their kitchen scheduling?
     
  2. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    While it violates tradition, consider:

    smoke cold for hours, finish sous vide over 2 days, grill or torch for bark.

    Hot smoke 4-6 hours, sous vide which will hold through lunch or dinner of the day after, finishing as above.
     
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  3. sgsvirgil

    sgsvirgil

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    Unless you go with phatch's suggestion, your options are very limited precisely because of the long smoke times. Here they are in no particular order:

    - Offer the brisket only on certain days of the week like weekends; (<--- best option, imo)
    - Run the smokers 24/7 and schedule staff accordingly;
    - 86 the brisket altogether

    Good luck. :)
     
  4. jimyra

    jimyra

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    If you are hiring a GM and a pit master, what are you going to do? Why wrap the brisket? How have you projected your sales and how much you need to produce? Good luck.
     
  5. someday

    someday

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    The best person to ask is the person you're hiring for pit master. They should be able to help with making a production schedule and you can fill in the gaps from there.
     
    dectra likes this.