Tips to shave some time off breaking down a line at the end of service

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by selfmade cook, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. selfmade cook

    selfmade cook

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    Help!

    Looking for some insight, perspective, advice, stories, or any kind of information you think would help make clean up at the end of the night more efficient and quite honestly much FASTER.  I work in a smaller kitchen (max 3 cooks on the line during rush) there's a range, grill, smoker, oven, steam table, and cold table.  When were not busy working tickets we do prep for next day's service, depending on the items on the prep list we prioritize what we can get done now versus what we cant get to because we need to maximize our space on burners, grills and ovens during service.  Needless to say if were slammed we get backed up, still have to finish the prep list, still have to clean/break down, and well you know how it is when your exhausted after a long shift??? Any wise words of wisdom to keep a late night into going into the weee hours of the morning.
     
  2. berndy

    berndy

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    Keep your work station as clean as possible at all times.

    Don't work sloppy.

    Don't leave it  messed up ever.

    Always clean behind you as you work.
     
  3. chefbuba

    chefbuba

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    What berndy said, also when it's getting close to closing, start gathering up clean pans and inserts so you can change out the dirties, consolidating, wrapping lesser used stuff. Get your soap bucket and scrubbers, clean towels, change the garbage cans if that is part of your duties. Do whatever you can in advance, get rid of the dirty pans that are sitting around in a tub, etc.

    Can one of you work mostly on prep and just jump back in when it's busy? or is it a 3 man line?

    I worked in a place years ago that had two kitchens, one up one down. The upstairs kitchen served the dining room, downstairs was a banquet kitchen. 

    Everything had to be taken off the line every night and stored in the walk in downstairs, that involved about 10 trips down the stairs with sheet pans full of inserts, real fun!
     
  4. accidentalchef

    accidentalchef

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    I have a three man line, and in a situation similar to your (tomorrows mise, lots of tickets hanging late on weekend nights, etc). What works for us is to have one of the three of us break off as soon as we are out of the weeds and start breaking down and cleaning the whole line, while the other two finish tickets, push desserts out, do tomorrows prep, etc...

    Each of us have our own order to breaking down (we rotate the duty so no one gets stuck with all the dirty work), but we have figured out how to time things so that when it goes well, the two left on the line can grab broom and mop and follow each other around the line while the cleaner pulls boards and such from their part of the line. Dog pile on the dishes in the pot sink and it's time to bolt.

    ...or you could do what a chef I once worked for did and let the cooks pull their knives and bolt at the end of service, leaving the dishwasher to break down the line and clean (with vague promises of being promoted to the line at some point in the future if he paid his dues this way). Cynical, but effective...
     
  5. chefbuba

    chefbuba

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  6. accidentalchef

    accidentalchef

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    I can see the beauty in that, and if I could let my guys put their mise in the lowboys, pull knives and walk out, knowing I could pay fairly for a pro crew to come in and scrub the whole place, I would do it in a heartbeat. These guys break their backs for me every day, but I'll be damned if I'll shift it all onto a minimum wage dishwasher by "promising" him a spot on my line if he does all my shit work... Until that time, we all stay until it gets done and no one feels shat upon.
     
  7. chefedb

    chefedb

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    Accidental chef very good way to do it.     I used to take all my mis. and change pans put on a sheet pan and put in fridge, this way tommorow I just took out sheet pan and put back all line items wine herbs spices garnish  everything I could.