Decoding Staff Roles
Why do I need Kitchen Support Staff if the food is already prepared?
When we send catering staff to an event, our goal is to provide a well balanced blend of talents. Therefore, we generally send one captain, one kitchen support team member, and additional waiters to each event.
We find teams work best when everyone’s role is clear. Our Captains are our most experienced staffers. They have attended numerous weddings and have worked as a food and bev professional for years. We trust these folks as decision makers, as our company’s representatives, as the professionals that they are. Because not every Waiter has experience in the kitchen, we like to specify one or more of your catering staff to the role of Kitchen Support depending on the complexity of the menu.
For very simple menus, the Kitchen Support Staff will assist with unloading the food and setting the buffet. The other Waiters may be focusing on setting tables, pouring water, processing event rental. Kitchen Support Staff focuses on getting the buffet set up and making sure food stays at temp, which is a pretty important job.
Kitchen Support Staffers are those folks who work in the back of the house at restaurants. They are the ones to whom, plating is second nature. Portioning math comes easy. These are the folks who know what the internal temperature of chicken should be. The ones who can carve a pork loin so that it feeds 50. Not every waiter has that skill set. So, by listing it this way we are simply guaranteeing that *at the least* one of our servers is devoted to these tasks, and can resolve any food based snafus that may arise.
If you are hosting an intimate event with fewer guests and we just send one ‘waiter’, we send a captain. Most likely, we look for a captain that has kitchen experience. We have taken to calling staff in these instances Party Pros. We want to put our very best staff forward when we are called into your homes. Party Pros are those staff who qualify as captains and specialize in either kitchen or bar service depending on how you describe your needs.
Party Pros work best in pairs. One Pro working up front, pouring wine, inviting guests to sample appetizers, setting tables, etc. One Pro helping mainly in the kitchen with finishing details, plating, clean-up, etc.
Party Pros can ASSIST you in executing a dinner party, they cannot cook the dinner for you. Assisting can mean a lot of things. The best way to delineate duties between host and staff follows. We will not utilize your knives or your oven: we will use your cutting boards and oven mitts. We can set the timer on the stuffed mushrooms and take them out of the oven, but we will not prepare the stuffing and construct them. Your pre-cut vegetables can be assembled to prepare the crudités platter, but we will not have time to pare unprepped vegetables into bite sized pieces. In these instances the staff are there to assist you in making your dinner look effortless, but you will still be putting in the lion’s share of the prep and execution.
If you would like assistance with actual food prep and cooking, we would be happy to send a Chef or Grille Master!