DegreeDiary

Having Trouble Finding Culinary Work? Start your own Pop-Up Restaurant!

It is increasingly difficult to find work when we are fresh out of school.  Many of us have been there, or are experiencing this now:  We are trained, skilled people who have years of focused training and are stuck with either no job at all, or are unable to land an interview.  The workplace is saturated with skilled people and to even get noticed can seem like a miracle. 

Many of my friends are trained chefs, meaning they have been through formal culinary training and either have a hospitality degree or diploma.  Even with this, they may be lucky to find a job as a line cook at a less reputable restaurant, so many have decided to take their training to another level by starting their own culinary business.

Large cities have seasonal markets, food events and catering gigs that are perfect for aspiring chefs who want to escape the rat race and make a name for themselves.  Rather than working under the direction of a chef, you become the star of your own show.  With this autonomy you get to look after everything:  You get to write the menu, set the price and take care of the inventory.  It's a lot of work, but it can be very fun and rewarding. 

I've actually be participating in food shows this past year and have learned a lot form other vendors and what I need to do for my business to make it shine.  

Firstly, it is important that your brand sticks out.  In culinary school, you learn how to cook and prepare in a variety of styles. Choose one specific theme and stick with it.  The more obscure, the better.  For example, in August I was in a show where a vendor offered nitro glycerine ice cream and another sold stuffed brioche buns. Being specific and keeping the menu focused will make your life a lot easier too because you know which ingredients to buy when you go shopping. 

When researching your city's food scene, look for seasonal markets, food shows, themed shows and music festivals.  A lot of events need food vendors, and this is your chance to showcase your finest creations.  

 

 

 

image from flickr.com 

 

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