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drinks for staff??

post #1 of 57
Thread Starter 
ive been at this for quite a while and while my online handle speaks for itslef(ill get to my point in a second) im not an alcoholic at all i just enjoy drinking.. a lot. im currently a sous chef at a way to busy bistro on a resort island we get culinary students as interns ever summer just for the realy bussy season, our current student is 5 yrs older than me has no experience and thinks were all kinda insane, for this reason...... we have 48 seats we are open for 4 1/2 hours and we will do 100(slow) to 170(insane) temps in kitchen range from 90 to 125 F so about half way through service every night our bartender brings back a tray off shots(probably triples though in brandy snifters) one for everyone then an hour later we will do another round, there is usually cheep beer in the walk-in(only for after service), and once the last ticket goes out a waitress wil take our shift drink orders we basicly drink wahtever we want(ill have 2 or 3 white russians) so basicly how should i go about dealing with the person? she does the shots and will sometimes get a beer but generally thinks were all NUTS and further more unprofessional. which we are not we wouldnt do these kinds of numbers if we were, not with our space limitations and insanly low food cost, on another note in recent convo's she told me she realy loves whiskey, any thoughts on what this chicks deal is?
Sweet Jesus
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Sweet Jesus
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post #2 of 57
Honestly, that's incredibly un-professional. I just came out of a kitchen like that, the stress was high, we drank on the job. While we could cope, it did affect us. And in the past, I've had tendancy to drink rather heavily (I used to put down 20+ drinks every night of partying, sometimes I'd have 4-5 beers and 6+ ounces of liquor before I even left work), so it was not a great lifestyle for me. You have 1, it turns to 2, before you know it you're at the pub after work getting drunk and you get into the habit of doing it all the time.... If you need booze to cope with work, then something is wrong.

Been there, got the shirt. No matter what you're thinking at the time, it DOES affect you, it affects those around you. It's a terrible lifestyle to have, I'm not saying it as someone who is against drinking, I'm saying it as someone who was there...
post #3 of 57
I've worked in many restaurants over the years. Some had drinks for crews, others not. What often was an issue was the liability issue. Imagine if you will, you've just downed your 3 shots and the person to your side accidently stabs you or cuts you. You have to go hospital and workman's comp is called into question.

Those three drinks just put you over the edge on two accounts. First, if you had to drive yourself in most states you'd be classified as drunk. Secondly, the hospital/doctor will annotate the BAC on your paperwork. Because, rest assured, if they smell the alcohol and are in US jurisdiction, it's gonna get reported.

Back to the restaurants that issue 'after last ticket' or closing drinks. Same deal. If you are involved in an accident on your return home; presuming you are driving, THEY are liable.

Ciao,
Order In/Food Out ~ It's NOT magic.
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"It's not getting any smarter out there. You have to come to terms with stupidity, and make it work for you." Frank Zappa
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Order In/Food Out ~ It's NOT magic.
- * - * - * - * -
"It's not getting any smarter out there. You have to come to terms with stupidity, and make it work for you." Frank Zappa
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post #4 of 57
Three nights ago, the shouldhavebeenblonde bartender waltzed in to the kitchen with a tray of margheritas, big grin on her face. She passed through a full, packed dining room.

I asked her "What's this?"

"They're from olddrunkenhippie, he sent them to the kitchen"

"Get them out of here. You were told when you started, to never send a drink back to the kitchen, not even to me, without me okaying it first. Get them out of here"

"But I thought it would be okay, I could just leave them for later"

"Take them back, now."

"But I put the money in the till, and he'll see them come back"

"Tell him thank you, but my crew doesn't drink on shift, and you made the mistake of not telling him that and will refund his money from your tip jar."

A bit later when I made my round through the dining room two tables commented about the drinks coming back out of the kitchen, they noticed.

As we get well into our clean up stage, I'll order a round for the kitchen, but we don't drink in the middle of the evening. I'm not having the liabilty. And I'm going to keep my crews production up.

None of us work that well with a drink in us; we're kidding ourselves if we think otherwise.

Maybe that's what your current intern is telling you.
post #5 of 57
Think everyone's said what has to be said. Most places I've been into, if someone wants drinks for the kitchen, it's a pitcher of coke.

Then again, if the owner/Chef sees drinks going into the kitchen he's gonna expect food coming out as a payoff, and he'll be screaming foodcost 'till his nose looks like a rotten strawberry.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #6 of 57

no drinking at all

in most of the kitchens were i worked (basically around the world) it was always NO alkohol on duty, period.
in some hotels we had a 'beerfridge' at the END of a shift each Chef and Cook got ONE beer or soft drink.
and even here in MOSCOW, we don't drink while working. and coming to work god forbid,drunk, is one of the few reasons you can dismiss staff without any problems.
But it is also fair enough to set a good example.If I as the Executive Chef been seen drinking in the Chefsoffice, i am not in the position to reprimand others.
After work it is a different story.
good food, one of the few pleasures left to mankind...
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good food, one of the few pleasures left to mankind...
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post #7 of 57
this was a habit i could not understand with my peers from culinary school even. They would get out of school/work and go straight across the street and stay there all night drinking and some of them would just walk back across the street in the morning cause they had to be at work and never went home. I was looked at as a prude because of it but I saw nice sweet people come into that place in the beginning and 3 months later they were total lushes.

All I have to say is to each their own. My idea of hanging out with my cooking friends is to find nice and unique restuarants to go eat at and talk food.
post #8 of 57
Booze, cigarettes, and the opposite sex. The downfall of many a chef.
post #9 of 57
I was working at hippy gormet pizza resturant, they had a policy where when you worked you could have a shift beer...it definitly hits the spot, after the work is done. Sometimes during cleaning and an empty resturant the manager would give us one while we cleaned...its also great beer(otter creek stovepipe porter). It was an open kitchen and not allowed to drink booze during service times...although the kitchen manager got around this by putting his beer in a travel mug ;)

I enjoyed having the shift beer, it was a great thing to look forward to and the staff would just hang out talk and have fun..without the pressures we woulld have during service.

then one busy sat night after shift the manager has a staff meeting during our shift beer.."ladies and gentleman I have here in my hand the P&L report for march"

it seems that during one month there were 800 "missing" beers. He had the total break down and the porter and Killians were extremely popular...apparently and it wasnt really communicated well that the bartenders were supposed to be ringing up the beers in the micros system...and they werent and people were also drinking more then "1". and it was over 3k in loss.

The resolution was this. Now you can have more then 1 but be resonable. write down what you had in the logbook at the bar and it would be entered into the system at the end of the night.

I know that the staff drank that beer...but it could have been the bartenders giving it away or the late night cleaning crew drinking it...the company wasnt upset about the quantity but that it wasnt in the system...like I said this was hippie pizza, apparently they dont have a problem with it...I think that this also just put the employees on notice that they know whats going on and that it was excessive.

During this time I was taking a beverages class at school and it really was a great lesson. The company has 8 resturants and the cost of all that beer sure must add up to a ton of cash each year, but at the same time its almost worth it because the staff was really tight and got along great, with very happy and productive employees...pretty easy to see a different kind of company firing the manager quick for letting that kind of debouchary go down...if the staff at each place only drank 1k of beer of month thats almost $100,000 a year.
post #10 of 57
Personally, booze makes me sloppy. So since I don't drink on the job I don't let the staff drink on the job. But shift drinks are no problem as long as driving isn't an issue. :beer: What ever happened to moderation?
What a relief! To find out after all these years that I'm not crazy. I'm just culinarily divergent...
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What a relief! To find out after all these years that I'm not crazy. I'm just culinarily divergent...
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post #11 of 57
As a soon to be culinary student let me add that perspective; others have already said my general opinion on the matter. A good culinary school absolutely pounds professionalism into their students and you can see this in the things they insist on that so many kitchens do not: perfect uniforms instead of shorts, nothing but water to drink on the line: not coffee, not soda, and many more "professional" traits that they hope their students will take with them into the world and reflect well on the school. Drinking on the job and heavy drinking afterward, smoking in general, etc. are all looked at and portrayed to students as highly unprofessional. And a student on an internship is dying to show the Chef just how professional they can be.
Now, I like alcohol: a glass of bourbon on the rocks after work, the ritual of the perfect martini, a crisp white burgundy on a warm summer day. When I'm out on internship I'll drink, but it won't be on the job and it won't be to excess because that would be unprofessional and I'm not going to throw away the cost of my education because of something like that.
post #12 of 57
I think it is trap waiting to slam shut on any hospitality venue. One becomes two and it will always esculate. And, as already pointed out it mounts up to alarming figures. I would rather have a nightcap when I got home and could really relax.
post #13 of 57
We drink at work but only after and when off the clock. Sometimes we'll be finishing cleaning at the end of the night and the chef will pass around cans of cheap beer. I would say 70% of the time we wait untill 100% off the clock, and NEVER during service.

That's just dumb.
post #14 of 57
Thread Starter 
your right one beer does turn to two and two turns into mixed drinks and so on but this is a resrt island rarely will you find my crue at a bar it closes before we get out of work so naa i say to the barr, as far as accidents go... been their done that and sent the dipshit to ER and then home for showing up to work wasted(by showing up i mean w/out us knowing by wasted i mean a few bottles of jack) if someone gets a round for the kitchen we usually wait cuz hey if they are paying we get the good stuff , yes your also right having a good time in life is a downfall isnt it kaun? and since were a small island and not a chain we dont deal with those kinds of numbers although for our size place our numbers our huge, (food cost in the low 20's)and for soon to be culinary students from a soon to be executive chef of a fine dining establishemnt(season ends i find new work) i guess your just better than me huh? i mean dam i could learn so much from you couldnt i after all my whole carear working 90+ hrs a week let me give you some sound advise the yes chef attitude they tech you in culinary school only gets you so far, you want to get ahead in life? you think your good enough? im a *****, flat out , and at 19 that landed me my first sous position because of that. **** i supose it doesnt even matter anymore i mean my original question in all, i gave some insight for perspective for how to deal with my intern but i realy dont need it anymore she drinks with us now, i suppose they all come around and just learn to enjoy themselfs and not be tight *** culinary students. but hey dont want to down play it im an incredible tight ***
Sweet Jesus
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Sweet Jesus
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post #15 of 57
someone needs another drink.... :beer:
post #16 of 57
boosehound

I find your flat out honesty to be quite refreshing.
My life, my choice.....
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My life, my choice.....
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post #17 of 57
Thread Starter 
thats just the kinda guy i am andrew563,thanks a lot , **** you should taste my tasty alcohilic mixtures now they are realy refreshing, hey after all the bible tells ya, the truth shall set you free( o boy i might be setting off a chain event of bible quotes im so screwd now!) anyway andrew563 alls i got to say to you is, say loud and say it ploud.
Sweet Jesus
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Sweet Jesus
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post #18 of 57
Drinking on the job is very unprofessional. I would never drink on the job.


edited for content
post #19 of 57
Heh, Kuan you hit the nail right on the head.

Caffeine
Nicotine
Alcohol

All major food groups. And the occaisional shenanigans and/or canoodling for an emotional shiny coat. As for drinking prior to work or during service, it tends to tire myself out prematurely, so i avoid it and stick to caffeinated drinks until after.
"Nothing quite like the feeling of something newl"
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"Nothing quite like the feeling of something newl"
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post #20 of 57

totally unprofessional

now drinking before or during work is totally unprofessional......All I can say for those who do is enjoy it while you can because sooner or later an accident will occur......or something and you will be **** out of luck and a job. Boose it seems to me that you are an alcoholic. What's wrong?? Are you bot happy with yourself when you are sober...What do you have to hide??
post #21 of 57
Thread Starter 
accident after a shot or 2 tords the end of service i think not never happend never will not with this crew this is a resort island very relaxed and as far as loosing the job wouldnt happen, not when the owners sometimes order the shots and or partake in them, its a celebration of well the season 9 months long full of well tourism, so we celebrate the sheer fact that we are the best place on the island and the most packed place every night as for other drinks/ shift drinks those come after service during clean up, but since i have been very very ill im not drinking and im fine with it i watch the whole staff do shots a few times in the past 2 weeks and i still have another week to go before im off meds that im taking and even then the doc said cool it for a week after push the water so im gonna so by my count that is almost a month dry of alcohol, and watching people drink for that month, now ive known some realy bad alco's, divorced been in rehab dui's cant see there kids kicked out of culinary school, ya they couldnt go 2 days w/out a drink, me i like to have a good time and i do a good job at it until i got very sick that is(sinus infection and some sort of a virus forgot what they said) (still dont know how i got so sick) so no i dont have a problem if i did i would have drank already even on the meds, but i havent wont and dont, so their you have it chefintraining i could write more but i wont im tired this medication makes me sleepy but is starting to work
Sweet Jesus
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Sweet Jesus
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post #22 of 57
This post was an eye opener. and very depressing.
fun = alcohol (huh?)
not drinking = prude (what?)
drinking heavily on the job (any job) = normal (phew!)
remind me not to eat in your restaurant
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #23 of 57

jfb1060

I don't know. I would think that drinking any alcohol at work much less in a kitchen where a multitude of injuries could occur would be terribly risky to say the least.

Nothing against having a few. I have a few sometimes after a long shift in the kitchen but I'm at home when I do it.

Never heard of an establishment providing alcohol for its emplyees before. I would think that there is tremendous potential for litigation if nothing else.

Just MHO.
post #24 of 57
i've worked in places where you got ONE drink after your shift, maybe a few more depending on who is watching.

The place I am at now, nothing during service, while cleaning up the cooks and dishwashers get beers, but whoever is left to man the line for the last few orders doesnt get a beer. There is one exception thought, when things get hairy out in the steak pit (in the dining room), we have been known to do ramekin shots of brandy...not that I approve. ;)
post #25 of 57
Alcohol during working hours is not a prudent way to run a kitchen. Free cokes or tea always, but never any booze.
I paid my kitchen guys well, and if they wanted a drink after, there were places still open. My staff did not drink in my restaurant.
Alcohol consumption lowers productivity, lowers safety awarness, and opens management/owner to horrible liability implications.
post #26 of 57
Drug and Alcohol usage all depend on the person and the amount. I can come into work high and work circles around most of the people I work with and same when it comes to a couple drinks. But it's all about moderation. I can work just as well buzzed but if I'm drunk I get sloppy. A couple drinks just takes away the edge... any more in my case just impairs me. Some people on the other hand would drop the ball with a buzz or when high -- it depends on the person
post #27 of 57

This is truly RIDICULOUS!

Ya know I have sure tilted back my fair share of "beverages". "Heck" I worked for TGI Friday's back when we had employee drink prices. Rumpleminz was called "Lombard water" and I loved it. 10 bucks and you could pour yourself outa the place. For Pete's sake the place was 5 deep with just us employees. But only after work! Some of the replies in this topic scare the "Heck" outa me. No wonder our industry can never get any respect. As a collective we ain't earned it if this is the case. Is it so hard to put in a days work without sloppin yourselves up on or before the job?

Ya know I have stayed away from this so far but this is ridiculous. I will end it now before I say anything to unprofessional even though there is nothing professional about the topic or some of the actions in it.

Okay I've put away the soap box.
post #28 of 57
There is enough time to drink without doing it at work.
A drink after work can be a moral builder.

I worked with a very good cook who had to drink three quarts of cooking wine before the dinner service. He could not sauce his own plates. His handle shook too much to use a laddle.

I worked for a very good chef and restaurant owner/developer. He is waiting for a new liver. He will be dead in a year.

I worked for a highly thought of chef who had her her own restaurant (used to be the best in town) and her on catering company. She lost, both and is loosing her house now. Not mention loosing her mariage and the respect of her family and friends and peers.

My dishwasher used to be an add exec in manhattan...before the drinking.

I always refuse drinks for my staff.
post #29 of 57
Boosehound...I think I know where you're coming from and I think you'll find this site can be an up tight, inexperienced mob of Puritans from time to time. Oh, BTW, volgarity is not looked upon in an excepting light here. So when you use it, try not to sound "angry" and use the * key for your vowels i.e.; sh*t! See, that will still show up, whereas, "****!", will not. Now, back to your original rant...Drinking towards the end of your shift has always been a sketchy topic. Liabilities through the roof! I am a sous chef in a kitchen with five other hardcore Mexican cooks and one gringo who leaves after the rush. When we are cleaning up, we often will have a beer or shot wich we pay for, and sing Mexican revolution songs. I think this is clearly an issue of moderation and discernement. We take care of ourselves if we want a nice adult beverage as we break down. The owner is cool with it as long as we not ------about it. Then afterwards, we go some bar and close it down and then to afterhours at some unfortunate server's apartment and get ------. "Everything in moderation with occasional excesses" -Neil Peart (Drummer for Rush) In the end, Boosehound, I feel your pain and you sound like you'd be fun to drink with!

<edited for profanity>
post #30 of 57

Are you a Chef...or are you in training?

Is this an AA site or are we just talking about kitchen life? "chef"intraining, obviously by the handle you've selected, you seem to have inadvertently let us know that you are GREEN. No worries, you'll get your thick skin someday. However, who are you to call someone you've never met an alchoholic? Are you phsycic? Um, do you even work in a professional kitchen? Or are you ------ culinary student who thinks they know everything? I'm just asking...Anyone who has a burr under their respective saddle about cooks and chefs enjoying drink at the end of the shift and there after obviously have not been successful in enjoying adult beverages in a responsible fashion themselves. I bought one of my Mexican dish guys a shot of good tequilla tonight and I felt good to see him appreciate my gesture. He busts his --- for us all night and it's important to keep a high and postive level of morale among the crew. So, "Chefintraining", tell us of your experiences...
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