Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Improvising my own "Dinner Impossible"...

Wow, I hadn't blogged in a while, sorry follower, lol.

Main reason I hadn't done so is this new adventure I've taken on. I left my cushy country club job and took on this incredibly insane rodeo of a job running the food service for a very successful restaurant management group. They own a catering company, a restaurant and a comedy club, all of which are busy all the time, it's crazy, in a good way. To say there's never a dull moment would be an understatement.

Just to give you an understanding of what sort of crazy things we do, let's discuss, shall we?

To start off, my first month was dotted with multiple small on and off-site caterings. From a couple dozen people fed on-site in our banquet hall to over a hundred people fed off-site. On party boats, in million dollar homes, at racing team garages, bars owned by Nascar drivers, and so on. All this while trying to learn the ins and outs of a crazy Irish pub and comedy club that could seat as many as 200 people a night (and has!).

The biggy was about three weeks into my time with them when we did a HUGE catering for over 450 people off-site! 8 food stations and raising money for charity during an auction. I saw stuff signed by everybody! From Fleetwood Mac and Grateful Dead guitars to every famous NFL jersey you could imagine, all in front of me, what a trip! We cooked some things ahead in the tiny restaurant kitchen, but most of the food was cooked there, under a 10 x 10 beer tent with a rented fryer, double decker convection over, a couple butane burners and a few 8 foot tables, just crazy. Somehow, though, between cutting sushi, building fruit and cheese displays and carving prime rib, we pulled it off, almost perfectly. Only a couple people were stressed out as they were wondering if the new guys could pull it off, lol. (sorry, looks like you all stressed out for nothing, lol).

Fast forward to tonight...I just got back from a catering where we fed over 150 people off-site in a place that had no kitchen. We cooked and reheated everything in nothing but a toaster over, electric flat top griddle and three butane burners. We did it all in a cramped back hallway without a hitch. Talk about dinner impossible, eh?

Also, you should see all the famous people that come through this place, blows me away. Apparently, one of the owners is good friends with just about everyone that drives a stock car over 180 MPH as well as 90% of the NFL. So, we could be getting our asses handed to us one night and all of a sudden AJ Almondinger will pop his head in the kitchen and yell something hilarious to all of us. Or, suddenly all 5 feet of Rob Schneider will walk through the kitchen with his entourage, just crazy (I got to make his meal one night, how awesome!). I fed Coolio and Kirk Busch one week, Lord knows who else! Just crazy.

Yeah, I have a lot to learn still, its no country club! The great thing about this place is, in addition to a great couple of guys that own the place, my all Mexican staff and fantastic fellow managers, its just a cool place to be a part of. I'm putting together some great new specials, rolling out some awesome ideas and will have a menu with great local food starting soon. New food, new plates, new exciting things in store.

My original skepticism and fear has now turned into excitement and joy, at least for now, lol.

Stay tuned!