Hey, all. I'm having a bit of a dilemma. You see, I am looking to buy my first personal chef coat. I have worked in the industry for years, and always just wore the uniform of my current restaurant. However, my personal business has picked up quite a bit, and I found myself with 6 weddings to cater this summer. I would prefer a proper uniform for prep and presentation. In the past, I have simply had server staff in white button-downs and black slacks; prep staff in white button-downs and khakis. I never wore a chef coat, because I did not want to be presumptuous, as I considered myself "just a cook" and have not yet graduated from culinary school. I'm also fairly young and sometimes feel intimated by some of my colleagues who possess years of formal training--what I see as "earning" the right to wear the uniform. A "for-real chef" associate of mine, however, suggested that as I have a pretty consistent catering gig going on, it was about time I got my own coat.
However, I find myself grossly under-educated on such subjects. What is the difference between an executive chef coat, and a regular chef coat? I prefer all-white coats, because I am a bit of a traditionalist, but I've seen some asymmetrical coats that look pretty neat. I think I like the feminine-cut coats; are there female chefs out there who have preferences they'd like to share? Any uniform experts who'd like to share what would be considered proper in such a situation? I'm open to the idea of more than one coat, depending on different situations. Thoughts on the matter? This seemed like a good forum for such a question.