The Importance of Failure

Dear Young Chef,

You’re going to have a night like this.  Trust me, it’s going to happen. Better to spend your effort on deciding how to deal with it rather than fretting over how to prevent it.  Your best laid plans to do so will get squashed, leaving you without a well formed answer.

The standard ebb and flow in the season of our business is that in the winter, Friday is typically our busiest night, and in the summer, Saturday gets the most traffic.  We assume this is due to the fact that folks don’t want to venture back … more »

Between Quality and Preference

Chefs are notorious for flying off the handle when it comes to criticism and rejection. It’s partly due to the fact that it takes vulnerability to cook food and set it in front of a customer.  It’s the same feeling I got as a child in 4H club, entering a piece in the woodcraft category at the county fair.  I wanted to return to the exhibit hall and see a blue ribbon on my entry, not a pink or white one, which was just an acknowledgment of participation.  I wanted to know that the judges thought I did a good … more »

Are you open?

Why bother staying open on a day like this?

Good question.  And it’s one that I actually learned how to answer several years ago, long before I entered the restaurant business.  It was a lesson in decision making that I remember from my days in college.

I don’t know why it made such an impact on me, but I was listening to a man lecture on time management and he made this statement that stood out and stayed with me these many years.  He said:

Make a decision and make it right

He explained that we should not put so … more »