In every food establishment or restaurant, the kitchen is undoubtedly a complex place to be in. More than just delicious food, the dynamics inside the kitchen are typically not seen by the public. Thus, many are not aware of what’s going on and who’s who in the kitchen.
With various roles at play to keep things operational inside the kitchen of a restaurant, one could only imagine what are the types of chefs and which tasks they do.
You would also often wonder what is the difference between a Chef de Cuisine vs. Executive Chef. If you are curious to know, stick around as we unravel the answers to these questions.
Brigade de Cuisine
Before we dive deep into the difference between a Chef de Cuisine vs. Executive Chef, you should first need to understand what a Brigade de Cuisine is. In every establishment, there should be a structure or hierarchy that needs to be followed.
This hierarchy provides a systematic flow and assures that specific tasks are designated to the appropriate person. Inside the kitchen, this hierarchy is referred to as Brigade de Cuisine.
The style and size of the restaurant will dictate the structure and size of the Brigade de Cuisine. This hierarchy had various chef roles, including the Executive Chef and Chef de Cuisine.
Chef de cuisine vs. Executive Chef
While both the Chef de Cuisine and Executive Chef work in a professional kitchen setting, they have very distinct roles.
An Executive Chef is a vital role that focuses on managing groups of restaurants or large kitchens. The Executive Chef role functions as the supervisory aspect and is usually not involved in the food preparation tasks.
Large facilities such as resorts, hotels, banquet halls, and convention centers usually house an Executive Chef to oversee and function as the head kitchen administrator.
They supervise and ensure high-quality consistency across all the kitchen facilities they manage.
Since the Executive Chef has administrative and management functions, they are also tasked to identify and help resolve kitchen issues. They also coordinate activities involving all the kitchen staff.
Chef de Cuisine
On the other hand, a Chef de Cuisine manages a single kitchen facility. The Chef de Cuisine is the one who is more involved with tasks like food prep and cooking. In a single kitchen or smaller kitchens, the Chef de Cuisine functions as the hands-on leader.
They are directly involved from food prep until the final plating to ensure that the best quality of food comes out of the kitchen.
In some kitchens, the Chef de Cuisine is also referred to as the Head Chef. In smaller establishments that do not have an Executive Chef, the Chef de Cuisine assumes the top management role inside the kitchen.
However, their primary function involves creating menus, quality control of the dishes, in charge of overall sanitary standards, planning and ordering kitchen supplies, essentials, and ingredients, and training and maintaining payroll for the kitchen staff.
Other Important Roles In The Kitchen
Aside from the Executive Chef and Chef de Cuisine, there are more roles inside the kitchen that makes the whole operation effective and efficient.
The Sous Chef is the second-in-command and next in line in the hierarchy from the Head Chef. Sous Chefs are more involved in the daily activities inside the kitchen, and they are the ones to fill in when the Head Chef is not present.
Chef de Partie
Chef de Partie is also known as the Station Chef and is an essential part of the whole Brigade de Cuisine. Inside the kitchen, there are multiple Chef de Partie assigned in various sections or stations.
Station Chefs help keep the kitchen operations productive and well-coordinated, especially during busy hours and in preparing large quantities of orders.
This often includes the Sauce Chef, Butcher Chef, Fish Chef, Roast Chef, Fry Chef, Grill Chef, Pantry Chef, Pastry Chef, Roundsman, and Vegetable Chef.
This also pertains to a Junior Chef who is someone in training inside the kitchen. They normally work under the supervision of the Chef de Partie. They study the specifics of each section or station around the kitchen.
These are the ones who assist with the basic tasks around the kitchen. Kitchen porters do not have formal training, and the tasks they handle usually involve basic food preparation and cleaning duties.
They are also referred to as dishwashers. Their main task is to wash everything that is used around the kitchen involving food preparation and cooking.
Also known as waiters and waitresses, they are the customer-facing staff in a restaurant. They are the ones in charge of taking orders, taking out dishes, and serving them to the customers.
In situations wherein there may be complaints regarding the food, the Aboyeur are the ones that report it to the kitchen.