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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Could It Be? A Day Off?

YES, it's true! After working three doubles--six shifts in a row--I finally have a day off! With the onslaught of hurricane Sandy, it was hard times for many in the restaurant industry...

As of Dec. 4, Eater listed 72 restaurants still shuttered because of
hurricane Sandy

But I am extremely lucky that the restaurant group for which I work has six other functioning restaurants within the city that were able to house my co-workers and me as 'temporary employees' until our restaurant reopens.

The stairwell leading into our kitchen--
which was submerged under 5 feet of water
The funny thing is: I'm working back at the restaurant where I first started nearly five years ago! From my position there as maître d', I'd left to move on to a server position at a well-established hotel in midtown.

The, then, general manager--a mentor of mine to this day--advised me that if I was serious about advancing in the industry, I ought to pick up some server experience. I served in midtown for less than two months before I was lured back to being a maître d' (this time in Chelsea) with an offer I couldn't refuse... 

IT wasn't until June of this year, that I continued on my path of acquiring server experience. And I decided that if I was going to be a server, I wanted to be a server for the company whose service I'd always viewed as unparalleled in the industry. (And I was thrilled to finally be working at a three star restaurant!)

Back where I'd started--where it's always
busy-busy-busy!
I must say: the bird's eye view from a server's perspective is quite different from that of a maître d''s... as is the pace. And serving in a three or 400+ covers shift is very different from plotting and executing the reservations book! But all that must be obvious. I just want to say that I don't envy or miss being a maître d'!

On the contrary, I'm thrilled to be learning all that I have been this past half year. With proper training I've learned the (twenty-one) steps of service and why we do them, along with the proper (and improper) ways of executing each step. 

Within a year or two, I hope to have gained enough perspective to be able to continue on my path towards restaurant management. Until then, Would you like to start with a glass of champagne or a special cocktail from the bar?
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