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Chefman Joseph Jurkovic

          So, No i didn't go to the Culinary

            My last cooking business was "Meals to Memories" where I would prepare a complete 3 course meal right in front of them for up to 10 people. I also learned that if you bring a bottle of wine as an "icebreaker" dinners go much easier.. Always during the initial phone call from a client, I would tell them that I didn't go to culinary school, I had the good graces to work and learn from great chefs. Before I would start dinner I told the people the same. I also told them there is more than one way to prepare anything. So with that said, if I had to do all over again hhhmmm hhmmm. Fuck yeah. Let me tell you why.

 Beware of Getting Sucked in

The Early Years 

The problem with the restaurant business is once it gets into your blood, it’s a mother to get it out.

You have to remember that you're 16 and getting paid $600 a week

(and that’s how you get sucked in)

Next thing you know you / me are told that “you in charge” of a 5-star kitchen and there is a party of 12 at 6 pm. 

Now you have 3 choices 

1 Run like hell ( I didn't have a car back then)

2.Say something like are you sure, or “i didn't go to the Culinary”

3. Let’s give it a shot.

  So your first night in charge is over, you wipe the sweat off your face

You look around and say 163 dinners “not bad”.

One of the best chefs i ever worked with was 

Ans Benderer (May He Rest In Peace.)

He was the Chef/owner of Plumbush Restaurant in Cold Spring,N.Y.

One of his favorite sayings was, Joe more Beer,

And the one I live with every day,

“Any Landing You Walk Away from is A Good Landing”


The difference Between a Cook And a Chef

Well obviously one is money

The second one is the owner gives you the 


I took advantage of this situation by teaching myself how to bake.

Listen now, there was no YouTube or Food Network come to think about it was BC. (before cable) 

Yes, this was even before Google or AOL.

So you get there at 6 am. and leave about 10 pm after service and clean up. But not before you check your Booze and Food orders & reservation book for the next day, oh oh don’t forget to lock the safe and sign the daily report. Look at 11:30 pm out early.


8 Days A Week

“ Out of college money spent, see no future, yes a pay rent”

Another day, who is going to call out today?

A.k.a. The  fu king RED light is flashing

One of the questions I was always asked was:

Why are chefs always so angry?

Let’s look at the type of people who dare work

In the restaurant business.

You can get Drifters, Actors, Drunks, Teen Mothers, and Spoiled rich kids. Balh, Blah, Blah.

I have had the pleasure of interviewing them all.

Now to hire Cooks or kitchen staff I had a simple rule.

“Make me laugh”

Why?, You have to understand working in a hot kitchen about 90 degree before you fire up any ovens, steam tables, fryers, stock pot, 

you got the picture, now do this 5 to 7 daze a week.

(hopefully with some help)

Dinner Time

“Joe, They’er coming in”

So to answer your question about why chefs seem angry

Here’s your Saturday Nite Scenario

180 ppl on the books, your 2 waitress down, the other 2 running late

Your waiter is hungover or still drunk, and your bartender is yelling at the dishwasher for rocks glasses. The owner comes by to say “see you tomorrow Joey Good Luck”  By the way the phone is ringing

Ready Go

If you remember early in this story you have been here since 6 or 7am 

It is now eleven hours later, and the best is yet to come.

Now I Have always managed to keep things in the proper perspective

I worked with only one chef (well cook) who thought he could yell and scream at everyone and anybody, His rule as chef lasted something like this. “Dale, can I see you for a sec?” I continued, “Do you have a car?”

(yes) “call me when you get home, thanks” and that's that.

Thing is between the furnace like heat in your face from saute pans, to the waitress who has no problem tell all that “she late” nevers can get a bit fray. If you let this shit get too you before the dinner rush even begins, it’s going to be a long night and to use kitchen speak

F ck That” 

I mentioned how i would hire cooks/chefs if they made me laugh

or she has a shot, and here's why. If you think I’m working 12 to 14 hours day with each other, and what talk about food all day, or I make my roux with olive oil, sometimes I use margarine instead of butter when I make pie crust. No No No i don’t give a shit. I need entertainment

Let’s talk sex, Mets baseball, where we're getting loaded tonight, and please make the radio louder sound like Bruce is on.



I'm always looking for new and exciting opportunities. Let's connect.


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