Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm a mature student (36 y.o.) almost finished culinary school and seeking just to gain some hands-on kitchen experience. I'm obviously not in it for the money, since the wage for a line/prep cook is $13-15 / hr in my area (at least that's my understanding). I recently had an interview at a restaurant and the environment seemed very young. I know restaurant work is youth focused, but the other line/prep cooks were 19-20 years old and the people interviewing me -including the chef- seemed to be about 10 years younger than me. It was a bit of a rude awakening; I have no age issues, but I just don't know if it's realistic to be starting out on the line at age 36 or 37. I need to gain practical experience and I'm curious if there are perhaps other avenues. I do have some long-term plans about how I'm going to put my schooling into practice, but I need some guidance about how to gain needed experience in the short term. I'm not completely unprepared for life after culinary school -for example, I know a very experienced chef from Paris who I can work under, but that would be a seasonal and part-time gig. Also, I'm a trained massage practitioner and I have some long term plans about how to combine that with culinary arts -at a resort / tourist operation, for example- but the short term need for experience remains. Thanks for any help.