Corporate Head Chef
What is your role in the restaurant?
Corporate wants each restaurant to have a consistent experience. My job is to create new recipes to be included in the menu. I spend a lot of time trying out different ingredients and flavours to try to get the right balance for our menu. I have to be careful to stick to ingredients that we can buy in sufficient quantities. Most people think that a restaurant like ours prepares everything from scratch. Sometimes we do, but a lot of our stuff is bought premade in bulk and then shipped to the restaurants. Our Reactive BBQ sauce is a perfect example. Very few people know what goes into the sauce. Even the companies we get to prepare it don’t have all the details.
Once I have a new dish figured out I talk to the marketing team. They work on preparing a nice description of the dish. We also have a food photographer so I work with him to make sure that the dish looks nice and is presentable for his photos.
What challenges do you face?
Well, as I mentioned there is the issues with sourcing ingredients. It can be a tricky business with all of the regions we have restaurants in. That’s part of the reason why so many things have to be shipped from our warehouses. Some of our ingredients are sourced locally, but not all of them.
We have these crazy processes around updating the actual menus. We can’t just do it whenever we want. Menus are only updated once a month. That makes sense because there are printer costs and distribution issues we have to think about. Basically once a month, after everything is prepared, I send an email out to all the restaurants with new menu items and recipes. But then we have to coordinate with the printers to make sure they get hard copies delivered in time. And then we have to also coordinate with the website to make sure they are up to date. It becomes a bit of a hassle. Basically near the end of every month we have this flurry of activity to get everything prepared.
- Corporate Chef updates the menu once a month.
- Corporate Chef works with photographer on menu photographs.
- Corporate Chef deals with supply chain for the restaurants.
- Menu updates must be coordinated with printing and website.