There are a few signs that the holiday season is coming. The first is red cups at Starbucks, the second is seeing way too many jeans tucked into Uggs, and the third is Halloween. When you're a kid, by the time you come out of the candy daze, the turkey is pretty much going into the oven.
After our restaurant's party (which featured the sort of debauchery that usually occurs when a bunch of eaters and drinkers get together), I woke up on Sunday and immediately started compiling a list of goals for the holiday season -- also known as "the busy season" for restaurants. People celebrate more, have more parties, spend more money.
So here's what I need to work on as I enter both the holiday season and the next stage of entering sous chefdom:
1. Get my ass on grill. The last time I was on grill, it was my chef's first night at our restaurant -- three months ago. Needless to say, a) it didn't go well and b) I need to master grill if I want this position. Overcooked steaks, here I come!
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2. Learn to order. This is something about which I have no clue. I am guessing it is totally based on getting a feel for the flow of food, but there could be a science to it. I just don't know. When thirty extra pounds of mussels show up at our door, you can guess it was probably me who ordered them.
3. Maybe the hardest/most frustrating/most unpredictable part of entering management is dealing (which is sometimes all it is) with your crew. I realized this when the pantry guy was trying to reteach me how to mop while the dishwasher tried to find a certain song on an iPod for ten minutes. As if I needed more evidence that working in a kitchen is about 28 percent cooking and 72 percent everything else.
I have just about three weeks left to hit these main points.
It should get interesting.