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4 Tips to Help You Succeed as a Chef de Partie

by | CAREER TIPS

The chef de partie is the backbone of all great restaurant kitchens. 

While the executive and sous chefs are busy planning menus, creating shift schedules, or negotiating with vendors, chefs de partie are in the kitchen during service, getting the dishes out to guests as efficiently as possible.

It’s the level of the chef career path you are going to learn and grow more than ever. Many chefs find their true culinary passions during their time working as a chef de partie.

We’ve already told you everything you need to become a commis chef and gave you some essential tips to apply in the kitchen. Now, we’ve gathered some expert tips that will help you smash it as a chef de partie and put yourself in line for a promotion.

Have a culinary curiosity 

The role of chef de partie is the most diverse role in a professional kitchen. Depending on the restaurant, there will be a number of stations for you to learn as a chef de partie. This is your opportunity to explore and find out which part of the kitchen excites you the most.

Maybe you discover that you have a knack for working the grill and are able to nail the cooking time whatever protein comes your way. Or perhaps you show a talent for the saute station and can work wonders with a pan on a stovetop. You might even find out that you have a knack for baking and decide to focus on the pastry department.

Your time as a chef de partie is where you should be curious and try your hand at as many different stations as possible. It’s in this role that you will develop your true culinary identity and know where you want to find yourself in the next phase of your career path.

Be ambitious

A chef de partie must be able to work well on a team and take instructions from the sous or head chef. However, that doesn’t mean that there is no room for you to have personal ambition or express your creativity.

One of the best things you can do to apply your ambition in a meaningful way is to develop your culinary skills at home, outside of work. 

It’s great to be able to learn from the other chefs in the kitchen, but there often isn’t enough time for lessons during a busy meal service. If you can develop your skills off the clock and then apply what you’ve learned at home in the restaurant, you will stand out.

Another good idea is to express your ambition through your creativity. At least twice a month you should try to present your sous chef with a new idea for a dish you’ve been working on and think would go great on the menu.

Putting in this extra time and effort will make the difference when management is considering which chef de partie to promote next.

Keep calm and stay positive

Cooking on the line during a busy dinner shift can sometimes feel like you are in the middle of a warzone, just trying to keep up with all of the orders coming in and out of the kitchen. It’s easy to become overwhelmed or irritated during a rush but getting upset doesn’t make the job any easier.

You should strive to remain as calm as you can while working with speed and precision to deliver dishes without falling behind. Putting on upbeat music can help you stay on task and in the zone. Another way to remain zen is by making sure your workspace is well organized and free from clutter. This will make it easier to focus on the task at hand.

Continue developing your soft skills

As an up and coming chef, you will constantly be learning new techniques and hard skills in the kitchen that will help you do your job even better.

However, it’s also important to develop your soft skills as well. As a chef de partie, you will always be working as part of a team so communication is one of the most important soft skills you can work on. You should be able to communicate yourself clearly, calmly, and quickly without becoming frustrated.

You should also focus on your organizational and leadership skills as they will be the soft skills that will help you move up to the next level of the kitchen. If you demonstrate that you can run your station efficiently and effectively while maintaining a strong rapport with your assistant chefs, then management will surely take notice.

So if you think you’re ready to discover your true culinary passion, then explore the open chef de partie positions available on Hosco today!

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