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Hi to all! And big question to all professionals.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Welcome everyone. My name is Jarek it is pleasure to join this forum. I would like to start with question that will also introduce me. I am 32 years old, 3 years a go I did my job as diving instructor in Thailand, and... during the time off, in one of the restaurant I was invited to see the kitchen, and I fall in love with this profession. Problem is at this time I was 29 and I decided to change my profession. As so I decided to travel to London...start on pot wash, go through to get money for NVQ , first Chef qualifications..and so working in many places,changing job often I still can't find my way. Places I mostly worked were only work camps without passion and quality only stress and no place to learn. I have in my head that I am to old to become good Chef. I can not find way, should I struggle in Michelin 80 hrs a week, or go to normal restaurant, or go to culinary sschool? How to master all this knowledge.. Bourdain in his book said that guy after 30 should give up.I study a lot, read but I have only mess in my head. I do not even have place to cook as I rent room. I am not from rich family, all I do I depend by myself, but I need guidance. Some advices? Thank You and all the best.
post #2 of 6
Hi Jarek, welcome. I am very much a follow your heart girl but i am also a realist. Theres a reason why the Michelin starred kitchens are governed by younger people, a high profile kitchen is extremely hard on the body and very intense/hurried all while perfection and consistency are demanded. Its not a line of work for everyone. Smaller kitchens could satisfy your need just as completely and keep your body and pride intact. I have been cooking professionally for years yet i know that an environment like that would eat me alive. My advice is to start small and learn the basics in multiple restaurant settings. There is SO much to know.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank You Lulu. I was in one Michelin star restaurant I enjoyed it until Chef showed his real face with running with hands to people .. and bullying them for nothing. Qu As a interesting thing I tell You that this place did not have problem with asking pastry chef to clean pigs head and do service same time.. worst standard of hygiene that I seen was there. Huge rotation. People jumping to each other throat. Hours are not a problem... but people. I don't want to lose passion on beginning. I will follow Your advice and develop.32 to is not death huh:-)?
post #4 of 6

Find a small chef driven kitchen with a changing menu. One with a hands on chef and a two or three person line, with the chef being one of the two or three people that work the line.

 

Look for one with an open minded chef that is secure enough in his own abilities that he isn't afraid of input or ideas from his team.

 

I didn't get serious about being a chef until I was thirty, even though I had been in the industry for 10 years. So it definitely isn't too late IMO. :chef: 

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #5 of 6

First of all, 30 is not too late to start in this business, although the older you get the rougher it is on the body.  Secondly, find a place that you are comfortable with.  There are all sorts of great restaurants, most of them without the Michelin stars.  There are many people that excel in the fast-paced, stressful, backstabbing world you describe, and others don't.  If this place isn't for you then find another place.  There are plenty of great chefs out there, the vast majority doing their work without all the awards.  Talk to other cooks and chefs and find out the places that they like to eat.  Chances are those are places that are putting out great, unpretensious food.

 

Good luck as you start your new career.

post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Pete. Cheflayene. Laurenlulu. Thank You so much. One day I will come back to this post to write where am I at some point. Glad to be here. Warm regards
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