Food can play a hugely important part in the guesthouse experience and getting it right can be one of the biggest keys to your success. If you, as the owner, aren’t going to be suffering the heat of the hob yourself, then you’ll need to find a chef to cook your culinary creations in your kitchen. Knowing where to find the head of your kitchen, as well as what kind of skills to look for can be tricky, so we’ve compiled the following list of hints and tips to give you a push in the right direction.
1. Searching for a chef
After you’ve finalised your job specification, it’s time to get hunting for your new chef. Knowing where to start looking can be a bit of a mystery, so why not begin by asking your friends or family members if they might know a chef who fits the bill? If you’ve already found yourself a supplier, they might know a dab hand in the kitchen who could be interested. Otherwise, it might also be worth posting your advert on an online job board or doing it the old fashioned way – in a local newspaper.
2. Skills to pay the bills
When hiring for any position of employment, it’s important to take the time to assess the applicant’s skills and experience, as well as making doubly sure they can do a satisfactory job. When it comes to hiring a chef, any relevant culinary qualifications are also worth considering. That said, if the only meal you intend on serving in your guesthouse is breakfast, then you’ll only need to make sure that they can fry the perfect egg.
If offering an upscale dining experience is right up your alley, you’ll need to take on a skilled and experienced chef. It might also be wise to go for someone who has worked in a similar position before, so you know they can cook a steak to a perfect medium-rare. All in all, you need to ensure that they have the ability to prepare dishes that are in line with the flashy food you want to offer.
For more menu ideas, read our guide: How to create a mouth-watering menu.
3. The big test
As part of the selection process, it’s a good idea to ask the shortlisted candidates to prepare a particular meal to ensure that it tickles your taste buds. You could also ask them to cook a series of sample dishes so that you can check out the variety of what they can offer you. This could also be a good chance to test them on their food regulations and health and safety knowledge – to make sure they know their stuff.
4. Retaining the right one
To increase the chances of your chef committing to the role, it’s important that you give them a certain degree of responsibility right from day one. For example, you could allow the chef to put their own twist on the menu, to create their own dishes from scratch or allow them to improve your current offerings. You could even let them take full control of the sourcing and ordering of ingredients. Establishing a positive working relationship with your chef is crucial and crediting their work by making their name known amongst your guests and in the local area will make them feel very rewarded!
By keeping all of the above-mentioned points in mind, you’re sure to find a chef that’s the perfect match for your B&B!
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