The Biggest Mistakes You Make Trying to Secure a Client


There are countless skills a training chef must learn to master: food safety, knife skills, presentation techniques, and inordinate preparation methods. And that’s just the beginning.

Most chefs, both in the private and public sectors, attend some form of culinary school.

But many also work their way up: Rachel Ray, famed celebrity chef, tv show host, and author of numerous cookbooks, started her career behind a candy counter.

Regardless of how one becomes a chef, though, one undeniable fact remains: passion alone won’t get you customers or clients. Continue reading “The Biggest Mistakes You Make Trying to Secure a Client”

Fall 2017 Trend Forecast: What’s Cooking in New York


In almost every industry, the message is clear: be ahead of the consumers, or you’re already behind.

The fashion industry is notorious for this: by July, Bazaar Magazine had already published a review of New York runway fashion-for this coming Spring.

But it’s not limited to the fashion world.  In fact, personal and private chefs would do well to stay ahead of the current season and plan ahead what for what their clients may be craving. Continue reading “Fall 2017 Trend Forecast: What’s Cooking in New York”

Three Red Flags that You’re Spending too much Time on Presentation

The name alone conjures the ambiance of high art. The Art of Plating, LLC has a mission to promote culinary art, featuring high quality photography of plated dishes on its website, Facebook, and Instagram pages.

With over 560,000 followers on Instagram alone, The Art of Plating serves as a celebration of food as an art, and showcases the importance of color, balance, and plating.

David Wynne, an instructor at the Culinary Institute at Seattle, revealed in an interview that he emphasizes the importance of presentation with students. In fact, students are even delegated time to visual plating, sometimes with the unconventional methods of using play-dough, before cooking.

And while presentation and proper plating is integral to a personal or private chef appearing professional and for attracting clients (see our full article on plating methods here), chefs can make a colossal mistake. Continue reading “Three Red Flags that You’re Spending too much Time on Presentation”

Boredom is a National Crisis: Four Meals Clients are Sick of Eating


Eating Out: Health Crisis?

Six years ago, Timi Gufstafson, a registered dietician and founder of an online health network offered a solution to America’s obesity crisis.  And it didn’t involve specific workout or diet plans.

Her advice was simple: Americans need to eat at home. Continue reading “Boredom is a National Crisis: Four Meals Clients are Sick of Eating”

CookScanner Compared: A Side by Side Ranking Against other Dining Options

When it comes to eating, Americans are faced with countless options. While the most traditional mode of everyday meals has been, for decades, cooking at home, less and less Americans are cooking and more are eating out.

The problem? Eating out can be expensive, noisy, and time consuming. Restaurant meals can also be bad for the waistline, and often, impersonal Continue reading “CookScanner Compared: A Side by Side Ranking Against other Dining Options”

Fires in the Kitchen: Saving Lives through Preparation


Anthony Bourdain calls it ‘management by fire’: his kitchens are run with extreme precision, teamwork, and strict standards.

Yet his kitchen are anything but orderly, at times described as “on the brink of chaos” and running on an “adrenaline-soaked culture”.

The famous chef, according to an interview published in Harvard Business Review, “uses an antiquated command-and-control management style with a rigid hierarchy and an inviolable code of conduct. The counterintuitive result…a tribal culture that demands—and nurtures—mutual respect, hard work, superior performance, and absolute loyalty.”

In part, Bourdain’s success, with his command and control structure, the need for respect, performance, and loyalty is also an acknowledgement of the need for teamwork and precision.

Continue reading “Fires in the Kitchen: Saving Lives through Preparation”

CookScanner Leads the Way with Personal Attention (Bonus: Summer Contest)

UPDATE -21-July -2017

The winners of the contest are:

Blog contest: Karina – @missfoodieny

Facebook contest: Sara DiPasquale

Instagram contest:  @khrystlerea & @evaramiop

Thank you everyone for participating, we’ll host another contest soon.

Stay tuned!

Summer Specials

If you are a New York based foodie and want to try a fabulous personal chef experience, write a comment on this post and we’ll send you a $100 coupon (limited offer – please contact us to see availability)

CookScanner is also running a free contest via its Facebook page. Participation is simple, and everyone has a chance to win a $100 coupon towards booking a chef. The winner will be selected in two weeks (July 21st) so don’t miss out!

Here’s how to participate:

  1. “Like” CookScanner’s Facebook Page
  2. Comment on the contest post what recipes you would like see prepared for you
  3. Optional: If you’d like a second chance to win, follow CookScanner on Instagram: @cookscannernyc

Continue reading “CookScanner Leads the Way with Personal Attention (Bonus: Summer Contest)”

Ice Cream Social: Why Personal & Private Chefs should Consider Homemade


Black Tapp and its affiliate restaurants speckle New York City. The five locations appear to emulate a modernized take on the traditional diner, serving handcrafted burgers and french fries, with plenty of sodas and spirits to accompany.

But what sets these places apart may not even be their burgers, but the fifteen dollar shakes- and the man behind them.

Chef Joe Isodori, a self-described third generation New Yorker, was also a previous private chef to Donald J Trump, the current president of the United States. And while his current position may be slightly less in the spotlight, his specialty shakes certainly aren’t.

Last year, Black Tap announced plans to continue its expansion, and its made good on its promise. The reason behind this expansion? Trailing lines of sometimes one hundred people: nearly two hours for a chance to try handcrafted fare.

Continue reading “Ice Cream Social: Why Personal & Private Chefs should Consider Homemade”

Recall Nation: How Personal and Private Chefs can be Proactive

Last January, one of the most popular fast-casual chains in America fell almost fifteen percent in a single financial quarter. Even now, a year and a half later, sales are still lagging and recovering at slow rates at Chipotle, despite efforts to address safety concerns.

There were fifty-five reported illnesses E. Coli outbreaks at Chipotle restaurants across eleven states, though it seems the damage to the company’s image amplified those cases. And of course this was not the only chain that had health and safety concerns in the past year:

For personal and private chefs, it may be reassuring that each chef arguably has more oversight concerning the ordering and preparation of food. And while these chefs still do need to be concerned about proper food handling and similar procedures, there are a number of things beyond their control that could potentially leave clients at risk for food poisoning or food-borne illnesses. And it has nothing to do with how well these chefs follow safety guidelines. Continue reading “Recall Nation: How Personal and Private Chefs can be Proactive”

Instagram 101: Changing the Way Chefs Build their Brand

When it comes to Instagram, it seems that chefs aren’t shy about expressing their opinions:

Merlin Verrier, the Culinary Director at Next Door, recognizes why chefs use Instagram, but also has a pet peeve: “The only issue I ever have is when people post sloppy pics of their own food… it leaves the door open for being critiqued”.

Pam Proto of Proto’s Pizza and Mark Gordon of The Sink echo these thoughts, insisting that it is a good medium for chefs, but only when the photos properly represent the food. Continue reading “Instagram 101: Changing the Way Chefs Build their Brand”