Local Chefs Share How Their Dishwasher and Cook Gigs Prepared Them for Their Dream Roles | Dish | Indy Week
Pin It

Local Chefs Share How Their Dishwasher and Cook Gigs Prepared Them for Their Dream Roles 

It takes an incredibly ambitious person to stick it out in the kitchen. Whether at the sink, the salad station, or the stove, the work is meticulous and tedious. And it's work that the entire restaurant depends on to function, though we diners often give chefs all the glory.

Many chefs, though, did prep work in kitchens before landing their own. We asked a few how those jobs prepared them for their dream role.

Gabe Barker - PHOTO BY ALEX BOERNER
  • Photo by Alex Boerner
  • Gabe Barker

Gabe Barker, Pizzeria Mercato

Growing up, I have always worked service-industry jobs. I was a busboy at Magnolia [his parents' restaurant], and I told my parents that I wanted to go to culinary school. They laughed at me and said, "Fine, but you have to work in a kitchen for a year first." My first job was at a French bistro in California. It only took me two to three months to realize that I didn't need to go to culinary school to learn to cook. I started as garde-manger, the salad station. They'd get rid of someone's job and, by process of elimination, I ended up with three stations. It was the first time I realized I'd be successful. And when my family shucks oysters every Christmas. I'm most proud of finally being better at it than my dad.

I use the term chef loosely. Cooks are used to saying "Yes, Chef," but I don't enjoy that. If you spend a day with us, it's light and jovial. I have a half-brother, and I'm the only one foolish enough to stay in the restaurant business. We work really hard and a lot, for not a lot of money. I spend more time with my two sous chefs than I do with my fiancée.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Dish



Twitter Activity

Comments

Fun story but not quite accurate.

http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/09/history-southern-food-pimento-cheese.html …

by Lane McColl on A brief history of pimento cheese (Dish)

Waraji, yes....I can't believe Sushi Blues and Cow Fish made the list. Harris Teeter has better sushi that these both …

by Michael Anderson on The best sushi in the Triangle (Dish)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Most Recent Comments

Fun story but not quite accurate.

http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/09/history-southern-food-pimento-cheese.html …

by Lane McColl on A brief history of pimento cheese (Dish)

Waraji, yes....I can't believe Sushi Blues and Cow Fish made the list. Harris Teeter has better sushi that these both …

by Michael Anderson on The best sushi in the Triangle (Dish)

La Piazza Pizza is second to none the best

7277 N Carolina 42, Raleigh, NC 27603

A Pure …

by goodfood85 on Pizza! On the hunt for the Triangle's best pies (Dish)

Does anyone know if the raspados truck is still there? I tried stopping by the other day but did not …

by ncsu_grad on Raspados: shaved ice, syrup and a spoon (Dish)

https://www.facebook.com/BryantFamilyFarm102?notif_t=page_new_likes

Please Visit, Like, and Share The Tree Row on Facebook. The family farm restart project. Its all about …

by Mark Bryant on Walking Fish community-supported program brings sustainable seafood to the Triangle (Dish)

© 2017 Indy Week • 320 E. Chapel Hill St., Suite 200, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation