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Kitchen Hats, Caps, Bandana's ect....

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
Do you think hats should be mandatory?
How long does the hair have to be?
Do you like those hats?
Do you think a ball cap is fine?
Do you think a bandana is okay?
If hats are mandatory should the chef have to wear one as well?

I just want to know what people think. I personally hate wearing hats of any kind while sweating. I have a shaved head and wear a bandana if I start to sweat.

Just interested to see.
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #2 of 31
I prefer a narrowed hat, limited in lenght, and not white. I have not found the ideal hat.

I do not visualize large hats like this:
post #3 of 31
Eating at a restaurant and looking into the kitchen to see staff wearing baseball caps?

I'd leave.
post #4 of 31
I don't know what state you are in ,or what food facility but in most place hair covering is mandatory by health code law.:cool:
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post #5 of 31
but in most place hair covering is mandatory by health code law

If so, Ed, it's a law observed more in the breech than in the practice.

I never see head coverings anymore---not even nets, let alone hats. At processing houses, yes. But not at restaurants.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #6 of 31
Any facility I have worked in in Florida everyone wore baseball caps or chefs hats. I know in NY there is a law on the books that the use of hairspray was acceptable(don't know if it still applies) Thats the one thing health dept. here is strict on, other things they are lax.
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post #7 of 31
I have fairly long hair, so up it is.....

All kitchens in Montreal MUST at all times have "something" to cover hair.

Hygiene rules differ from one kitchen to the next but they are mostly the same. I have even seen beards covered in High end kitchens.

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post #8 of 31
Interesting.
I have no problem with ballcaps.
If the food and service is good I don't care if the kitchen crew is wearing mining helmets.
Paper Mickey-dee's style hats would turn me off though.

Over the years I've seen everything from toques to skullcaps, wraps, hairnets, ballcaps, tall paper chef hats.

I think a cook should wear something comfortable and practical.
It's been rare to see a Chef wear a hat unless he is chained to the line.
If he walks in and works a small project, he is usually uncovered.
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post #9 of 31
I agree, I don't see the problem with wearing baseball hats... I prefer to wear a simple black skullcap if I am required to wear one, though I do like the camo prints too and I've worn baseball caps on occasion (I just don't like the ridge though, it blocks my vision and I tend to smack it against various surfaces when I'm working.) Oh, and I hate the classic chef toque... it's horribly impractical.

The thing I've noticed is that the higher end the restaurant generally the less headgear there is... at least that's from personal experience.
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post #10 of 31
Then call me old fashioned, call me British.... it's the belief that the same baseball cap would be worn outside the restaurant, and just not removed before coooking :cool:
post #11 of 31
Chef magazine used to give out White baseball caps with CHEF spelled out on the front???
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post #12 of 31
Thread Starter 
Well the small little resort I work at on an island. There really isn't alot of health inspectors around. They come twice a year and the other 2 resturants will call and let you know before they stop by. Never once have I been told to wear a hat by them. Mainly becuz I have less then a 1/16th of an inch of hair.

I think most hair in food comes from servers and not cooks. If you have hair then yes cover it up. If you have no hair all you need to worry about it sweat.

I won't work in a kitchen that tells me I have to wear some stupid pepper hat or anything I don't want to.
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #13 of 31
Ishbel, you in the US you might be surprised at how many places you might have to leave if you stayed true to that comment. Baseball hats are becoming more and more the thing while toques are not a prevelant as they used to be.

I am a firm believer of wearing hats in the kitchen, not head bands, not bandanas, but hats. Personally I prefer baseball caps to toques but I wear what the "powers that be" want me and my staff to wear.
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http://www.onceachef.com/ is my personal blog where I share many recipes, my passion for cooking, and all things food.
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post #14 of 31
Thread Starter 
On the westcoast Canada cooks are in such high demand you can basically tell them you will not wear a hat. Along with how much you expect to be paid and the hours your willing to work. If they don't wanna go for that 20 other places down the block will. :)
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #15 of 31
When I worked in the kitchen as a commis, hats were mandatory. Chef had a paper toque, everyone else had to wear the short paper ones. Long hair? hair up and back, hat on.

I got into sooo much trouble...one day early on in my kitchen stint, the kitchen ran out of the short ones. As I have a mass of hair, I thought I better wear something at least, and not thinking, grabbed a toque (I didn't realise the importance of it at the time).

Oh dear. I copped it :( "What ARE you doing wearing that?!?!?!" So, never again. Geez that was a long shift... :eek:

Some tv programs I've see out of Asia in the larger restaurants often have all the food prep. staff wearing paper face masks....is that common else where?
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
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post #16 of 31
I probably might, Pete. :lol: I have to say that at most of the restaurants I frequent (many with the now ubiquitous 'open kitchen' layout) the chef/cooks have their heads covered - mostly with the flat caps, but covered nonetheless. I suspect my antipathy for baseball caps is fuelled by them being part of the uniform for most of the chavs* locally!

Scottish chavs are usually referred to as Neds - but I think the English terminology is more widely known!
post #17 of 31
I always made it a mandatory rule that you must wear a hat, and I supplied them. I gave everyone a choice, either a baseball cap or a skull cap. I didnt care if you were bald or had hair down to your waist.
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Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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post #18 of 31
Thread Starter 
I won't cover my skin head for anyone. Not worth the peanuts you'll willing to pay me to bow down to ANY chef's rule. Sorry might work on little boys, but I'mma man.
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #19 of 31
In many of the states in the US you wouldnt have a choice in the matter, whether you are "a man or a little boy" as you like to say. THE MAN, Big Brother, Uncle Sam, is the one who makes the rules, we all just have to abide by them whether we like it or not. Its a part of doing business.
Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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post #20 of 31
Thread Starter 
True, and your not supposed to speed. Sure we all do. Even if we're told its not allowed lol
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #21 of 31
If my chef told me to wear a hat, I would either wear one or I would choose to no longer work there.
I won't disrespect him/her by acting immature.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #22 of 31
Maybe so but the difference between the two is that when you get caught speeding you may or may not get a simple ticket that you can pay and be done with it, when you get caught not following the Health Depts rules(depending on the state)you may get hit with a critical violation which will show up in the paper or on the newscast which will be seen by many and may cause damage to your business and reputation leading to a loss of sales which may end up being catastrophic. I would rather wear the hat...
Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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post #23 of 31
I wear the skullcaps as well. Primarily they soak up sweat really well. Also theycan be washed and rinsed in the sink and put back on wet if needs be. I live in Cali and yes anyone with more then 3/4 inch of hair is supposed to have it covered on the line. Tied back as well if it comes to your shoulders or longer. I heartily agree with all of these rules as hair in food is just a nasty experience.
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post #24 of 31
Thread Starter 
I understand if it is BY LAW then yes I "would" wear one. I'm thankful I shave my head and have near to no hair. If anything my goatee is a lot longer and is closer to the food then any hair on the top of my head.
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #25 of 31
And as such you may be made to wear a beard guard in some cities/municipalities. Now that would suck worse than a hat IMHO.
Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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post #26 of 31
Thread Starter 
Yeah that would suck. I'd rather wear a hair net and be a lunch lady lol
"If You Can't Handle The Heat... Get Yo Self Out The Kitchen"
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post #27 of 31
I like a welders cap with no bill. They're nice and thick so they soak up a ton of sweat. They're also flame retardant, a major plus for any article of clothing in a kitchen.
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post #28 of 31
dont be so hard on the mcd's style paper hats. at le bernardin (NYC, 3 michelin stars) all the cooks wear them, and the chef and sous are all hatless.

at one super high end place i worked, (famous too. the chef was a judge on top chef!) it was tall paper toques. i still have one actually, as a souvenir. the exec chef and chef de cuisine however, were always hatless.

i worked at a sushi bar once that required every cook to wear a baseball cap with the company logo on it. it sucked, but i liked working there and i wanted to learn sushi, so i stuck around.

i have a friend who wears nothing but white sleeveless tshirts under his jacket in the kitchen. he takes the sleeves and uses them as headbands.

i have a beard and longish hair. ive never had to have a beard net, but i always have to have headgear. i usually take a cravat (neckerchief) and use it as a headband, marco white style.

my personal opinion? hair and/or sweat in the food is gross. i also hate seeing cooks with cuts or burns on their hands handling food without a glove or finger cot. thats just disgusting. ive been unemployed for a month (chicago job market is brutal right now), so if i got a call from someone saying that i could work there but i had to wear a swedish chef style toque, white clogs, and a pink jacket, id probably do it, but only if they supplied. i aint buyin that crap...;)
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post #29 of 31
Where I work we're required to wear some kind of headgear. We do have a choice of what kind and I wear a baseball cap. The thing is that before I started working in kitchens I used to always wear a baseball cap and now as soon as I'm out of the kitchen I can't wait to take my hat off.

Also, if anyone's read The Curious Cook by Harold McGee there's a chapter in there about how to avoid getting oil droplets on your eyeglasses. And it says that a hat with a brim like a baseball cap works best for this problem. I don't wear glasses so this isn't a problem for me. But I thought it was an interesting bit of information.
post #30 of 31
Where I work, the chef doesn't make us wear hats, we all have shortish hair that is kept in place by "product" and this is New Zealand, so no hair health codes yet, all it states is "hair should be tied back and preferably covered"
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