The culinary field is a wide one and there are a lot of possibilities. The culinary business is divided in two worlds:
- Front of the house (all services related to taking care of guests): server, bartender, suiteur / busboy, hostess, barback and Maître D', to name a few.
- Back of the house (all services related to the kitchen): starting with the Chef, sous-chef, garde-manger, line cook, saucier, grill cook, pastry chef, etc. The name for each role may change according to the type of restaurant.
There are also several businesses in which you can become a culinary professional:
- Food trucks
- Nursing homes
- Catering halls
- Catering companies
- Private Chef services
The most popular ones are usually the top 4 on this list. We are living in the era of celebrity Chefs, which has been a major trend for quite some time now and is still growing. That being said, it is not necessarily an easy status to achieve. I personally believe that there is no such thing as a best area to work in, there will be a best area for you, according to what you want out of your career.
I have worked in the restaurant business for 12 years and can tell you that it is not easy on your lifestyle. The hours can be long and the schedules are usually ever-changing. That is true whether you choose the front or the back of the house. It is also an industry that will be difficult to work in, if you have or want to have a family, as you would most likely be working nights and weekends. That said, there are ways to have a more stable schedule, certain hotels, private services, hospitals, nursing homes can often provide that benefit, although sometimes much less glamourous.
I could go on and on about this and there are a lot of possibilities. The culinary world is certainly wonderful for creative souls and people who love to take care of others. It is a great way to make a positive difference in people's lives, even on a small scale. I know that this is what kept me going for all those years. Seeing the smiles on your clients' faces because they were so happy with their experience, one that you contributed to. It's a great sense of accomplishment.