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Family Meal..What do you think?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hello all! I love this new job so far but i have encountered a problem which is family meal.

before i came, the waitstaff would just put in an order for that they wanted to eat. they couldnt have steak or seafood. My cooks and I had a meeting together and they said that the could get out earlier at night if they didnt have to cook peoples employee meals. So, i decided to tell the waitstaff that they needed to put there orders in by 6 pm. That worked ok but it was still somewhat of a pain becasue it could cut into prep time before service starts and sometimes we really need that prep time.

so, the other day, i decided to put together a very small "buffet" that we would put out a half hour before service. anything left over would go into the hot box so the other waitstaff could eat as they come into work. i think this would be ideal and allow us to utalize left overs.

so my question.... does anyone have any other ideas to make an easy and fast family meal that wouldnt be a big burden on the ktichen crew?

post #2 of 8
In large hotels there's actually a guy who cooks just the employee meals. Sometimes that job is rotated but I guess you don't have that luxury.

A little more advice coming from experience. The cooks will get out when they're good and ready to get out. They will also always have something to complain about. Everyone complains. Getting the meal prepared earlier won't necessarily get them out earlier. You're not concerned about labor anyway so it's not that you guys can't afford to pay them.

You can cut down on time somewhat if you get your DMO to do it. You, as the chef, can set stuff to a corner and bark out instructions as it gets done. A sharp guy who wants to step up will get it after a few times and eventually save you lots of time. But you're going to have to reward them after awhile. Leaving the salad bar up is also an option. Some of the ladies will eat off the salad bar once or twice a week, guaranteed. Especially if you don't reuse your shrimp.

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 

I AM concerned about my labor even though it is a country club. for example, service is over at 8 pm and a week or so ago, my guys could have left at 8:15 but instead, they got bombarded by employee meals and didnt leave until 9:15pm which sucks.
post #4 of 8
Isaac, when I cheffed at a C.C.(golf only) i had a 5-6 item menu for a.m. staff with set order times. Grounds crew were fed a meal of the kitchen's choice everyday-they usually tossed it and bought something at the snack bar but at least i got some food credit and a sale.
For p.m. all i had to feed were service and banquet staff, when applicable. They were also fed at the kitchen's choice unless they too wished to purchase a meal-which wasn't very often. They were pretty well fed with leftover prime rib, misfires, etc... They ate after service as the guys were breaking down the line.
Any exceptions to policy ie order times had to be ok'd be me or my sous period.
You might get together with your f&b director and gm to establish your new "rules" and make sure staff is advised-memos, etc...and then crack down. If you're being hit on labor, record it for management on paper and shows them the $$.
Remember you weren't hired to be the nice guy and someone will always try to get away with something. And like kuan said cooks will complain about something, it's part of our nature ;). Good luck.

hth, danny
post #5 of 8
Isaac, how many guys do you have and how many servers do you have to feed? How many guys do you have working the line, 3-4? Takes 3 guys an extra hour to feed the house at the end of the night?

post #6 of 8
order in by 7:30 burger, chix sandwich, big salad and a leftover option. dont like it, go to taco bell. i am a firm believer in feeding the staff, but not in giving them full run of the menu and my employees. this seems like a very anoying and expensive way to feed the family.
post #7 of 8
This is so country club culture. I think in the long run you shouldn't change it much. This is one situation where you have to bend a bit and compromise. Get the servers together and explain your dilemma. The important thing is to get them to agree, whatever it is, everyone has to agree. This will require some compromise on their part of course, but once everyone has settled down to the new modified routine things will be peachy.

Isaac, go to the bookstore, read "Who moved my cheese." It may be the most important food related book you've ever read.

Best of luck,

post #8 of 8
When I worked at a country club we had staff meals at 10:45 am and 4 pm. Period. If you didn't like it, bring your own. No one did, as the chow was pretty good. The kitchen fed all the wait staff, the cooks, the office help and the grounds crew. System worked pretty well.
It's not Dairy Queen.
It's not Dairy Queen.
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