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”

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”

Four Reasons why New York is a Great Place for Personal and Private Chefs

New York, with its nickname as “The Big Apple”, has long been known as a hub from arts to politics to everything in between. But while most people think about the allure of New York City, few appreciate what makes this state unique: its diversity in both demographics and culture.

In some ways, the third most populous state is a state of contrasts: with a dairy industry of over 18,000 farms, the robust wine industry in the Lower East End, and the main metropolis of New York City, home to over 8.5 million people and roadways with the notoriety of being the most congested in the nation.

But maybe because of these contrasts, it is also one of the best places for a personal or private chef to work. Here’s why. Continue reading “Four Reasons why New York is a Great Place for Personal and Private Chefs”

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”

Millennials and their Elusive Dining Habits

While many chefs spend their energy creating dishes and marketing to adults, younger to middle age, who are more likely to have established and stable jobs, as well ad disposable income, there’s a concern that a growing population is not given perhaps as much attention as it should be.

Millennials, identified as young adults ages eighteen to thirty-four, surpassed the Baby Boomers in population two years ago (those now 51-75, roughly) , and continues to grow amid immigration and population fluxes. Continue reading “Millennials and their Elusive Dining Habits”

Plating Presentation Basic Principles : More Important Now than Ever

Customers have flocked to fine dining establishments for refined flavors and beautiful presentation for as long as the food industry has been prominent. Most people expect that, with a higher priced dish, will come not only more complex flavors and higher quality ingredients, but also a more thoughtfully plated meal.

But perhaps customers have not been aware of their desire for a both tasty and beautiful meal nearly as much as they are now. In an interview with MilkBar Digital, a digital and social media agency based in Melbourne, Chef Ryan Lording, known for his ability to work with edible flowers, explains how the food industry has changed dramatically in recent years. Continue reading “Plating Presentation Basic Principles : More Important Now than Ever”

Pressure of the Profession: Shedding Light on Mental Health and the Food Industry

Chefs looking to expand their careers seek resources on any number of topics, from cooking techniques to financial and business matters to the latest food trends. Personal and private chefs establish their clientele, work to market themselves, and create unique and personalized menus for their clients.

And while any number of concerns may come up, too few stop to consider one thing that may greatly impact not only their careers, but also their personal lives.

Mental health. Continue reading “Pressure of the Profession: Shedding Light on Mental Health and the Food Industry”

Competitive Personal Chefs -Edging Out Meal Delivery Services

For Megan Willet, purchasing Blue Apron, one of the leading meal-delivery services, seemed to fit her hectic lifestyle. Many consumers like Ms. Willet flock to meal delivery services in the hopes of relatively healthy, affordable, and convenient meals. To be sure, there are some modest truth to these hopes. But for customers like Willet, these benefits are ultimately overshadowed by hidden downsides.

“My least favorite part…was the cleanup”, she told Business Insider. She recalled recipe cards with vague and complicated instructions that required countless different dishes and bowls, and an emphasis on visual aids that could prove daunting for non-chefs. Annoying, too, were the special bowls and utensils most services require customers to buy. Continue reading “Competitive Personal Chefs -Edging Out Meal Delivery Services”

Making Your Brand: A Chef’s Guide to Publishing

When most personal and private chefs begin, they plan to create menus, make connections with suppliers, and to market a certain type of brand of cooking. What most don’t consider is becoming an author.

For some time, it looked like cookbooks were going out of vogue in the United States. In 2010, Lorena Jones, Vice President of an imprint publisher, saw the inundations of I-pads, not the mention the already present online community of blogs, and predicted the downfall of the cookbook industry. Rux Martin, editorial director of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, held a similar gloomy prediction. Continue reading “Making Your Brand: A Chef’s Guide to Publishing”