End of an era

So my friend at the French place I worked at prior to my current job (at a French place) finally gave notice this afternoon, as in immediate notice.

In some ways it’s a sad day, because I now know no one there anymore who can give me fodder for my blog; but in many ways it’s positive because I know no one there.

The final straw apparently came when he saw on craigslist that they were hiring a lead cook for more money than he was making, in addition to the promotion of the newest line cook they had there to sous chef (a salaried position no less).  Was I guilty of forwarding him the listing?  Sure, but apparently I wasn’t the only one, and since he’s been looking for a job he would have found it anyway.

Undoubtedly he kept the place going when he shouldn’t have, and unfortunately it will keep going, defrauding clueless patrons out of hard earned money (using canned truffles and adding truffle oil to the sauce to “beef” up the flavor if you will on a dish that is just shy of $40; thawing proteins at the start of the week only to refreeze them on Saturday night (this is where I drew the line); using grade B foie gras because “people can’t tell the difference”; and the worst and grossest practice of all – scraping butter out of the butter dishes that went out to peoples tables to be used to cook with (to me that’s just fucking disgusting – I know places do this but I don’t work in them).

So from when I started in mid-to-late August of last year, here’s an obituary of sorts of all the cooks I worked with (and one whom I merely met a couple of weeks ago):

  1. The douche baggy sous chef who started one week before me but was unceremoniously fired about a month later (I can’t even recall his name).  Total time – about 1 month.
  2. Some guy named Craig who started a week before me but gave notice some time during his first week.  Apparently he wanted out of the restaurant business altogether, or maybe he just saw the writing on the wall.  He was a cool motherfucker though.  Total time – 3 weeks.
  3. Brian, who’d been there for about six months and had worked with the previous “chef”.  He was moving and had given notice before I was hired, but was told one day not to come back (kind of similar to how I was treated after I gave notice).  Total time – 6 months.
  4. Me.  We know how that went.  Total time – 4 months.
  5. Daniel, who started a week after me and quit a week or so before I left by doing the no call/no show, which was interpreted apparently as the owners firing him (I never figured that one out).  He started out as line cook but after the sous chef was canned was promoted.  Total time – just shy of 4 months.
  6. Greg, who started early September and quit today.  The only person there I really had fun with.  I’m trying to get him a job where I now work.  Total time – 5 1/2 months (a long time by all accounts).
  7. Jason T – Had two stints, one back in September right after I began which lasted about two or three services, but didn’t get along with Daniel, so wasn’t hired on at the time.  Eventually he replaced me in December and was told that I was fired to make way for him.  We had an interesting chat today.  He gave his 2 weeks last Saturday.  Total time – 2 1/2 months.
  8. Todd – Daniel’s friend, kind of a stoner dude who had about 10 years bar and grill experience in Wilmington and wanted out the restaurant business altogether, but was finding it hard given the economy (and no doubt his total lack of qualifications for anything resembling a 9-5 job).  A fun guy no doubt, but no one I’d trust my life with.  Eventually pulled the no call/no show in late December.  Total time – about 2 months.
  9. Jason C – started a week before I left and left about a month ago.  I guess he had a run in with Lori (the owner’s wife) and walked out having not been heard from or seen since.  I don’t blame him.  Total time – 1 1/2 months.
  10. The fat guy from NY who started last week (that’s all I know about him) and after 3 days was offered the sous chef job.  Good luck.
  11. Some other new guy who started earlier this week.  That’s as much as I know about him.

That’s a lot of fucking cooks for a place that needs no more than 3 (I don’t even want to do the math to figure out their turnover percentage).  And I bet they hate sending out W2’s.

So that’s it, an end of an era.  I guess the one good thing is that I was exposed to shitloads of people in a short amount of time, which could work in my favor down the road.


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