This week I finished reading Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain. It was fun and easy to relate to after working in restaurants and hotels the past 15 years. Working in a very "corporate" environment now, some of the shenanigans that can occur in independent free-standing restaurants, don't happen (or not as much) in a corporate kitchen. One of the last chapters of the book includes Anthony's recommendations if you want to be a chef. Many of these can apply to your job as well.
1. Be fully committed.
2. Learn Spanish (so useful in so many applications...it's true)
3. Don't steal.
4. Always be on time.
5. Never make excuses or blame others.
6. Never call in sick ~ except in cases of dismemberment, arterial bleeding, sucking chest wounds or the death of an immediate family member. (another one I love, since I haven't called in sick in the last 10 years)
7. Lazy, sloppy and slow are bad ~ enterprising, crafty and hyperactive are good
8. Be prepared to witness every variety of human folly and injustice.
9. Assume the worst.
10. Try not to lie.
11. Avoid restaurants where the owner's name is over the door.
12. Think about that resume!
14. Have a sense of humor about things.
Dining Update - This week we went to Westword Dish, where there was sampling from about 30 Denver area restaurants. We also went to Bonefish Grill. I'd had a gift certificate from earlier this year that had not been used (constant debate between my sister and I, since I tend to sit on gift certificates and she uses them right away). The food was great and our server hilarious. In general I don't seek out chain restaurants, but I wasn't going to waste the gift card. Had ceviche for the first time since Peru, also enjoyed sea bass, grouper, salmon, scallops and shrimp.
Anthony Bourdain had something to say about what day you go out to eat. The 'average' person goes out on a Friday or Saturday where the restaurants are packed and the staff has a turn n' burn attitude. Sunday brunch is basically leftovers from the week. Monday is questionable...new shipments come in, but the restaurants want to use their old product up. Tuesday - Thursday is where it's at. The product is fresh, the kitchen and the floor aren't as busy and you win.