“If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen!” –This is the all too familiar phrase we hear when people describe the food service business, particularly that of running a restaurant.
It seems that nowadays, everyone and their third cousin are running their own local restaurant. And why not? Food is one of the basic needs in life. Everyone needs it; everyone loves it, which already makes for a good reason to venture into the restaurant business.
Food, Spice, and Everything Nice
You know more than a little bit about food. You know a great wine when you smell and taste it. You know wonderful pairings when it comes to food and wine. You like people. You could already be a restaurateur in the making, right?
It’s a fruitful idea, and one that should fill you up in the stomach and pocket, that is until you realise just how hard starting and running a restaurant really is. Soon enough, your restaurant diary will be full, flames will be flaring from the pan, and questions will be flying like grains of salt.
Questions will be lining up even before orders pile up. What permits do you need? How much will it take to start one? Where do you get your fresh produce? Will you buy your hospitality supplies online? Is this meat too rare?
In other words, you first need to understand the business and the fundamentals. Otherwise, you may be at the receiving end of the familiar phrase “Please pack your knives and go!”
Warming Up the Pan
If you don’t know how to slice an onion, you don’t belong in the kitchen. That is, if you don’t know the basics, you probably won’t succeed. The restaurant business is a lucrative business, but one with a very delicate structure. It’s almost like there’s a thin line between success and failure, similar to the few minutes it takes to cook a fish perfectly and overcook it.
The food business is not merely stocking up the docket book for reservations or orders. It’s no longer also just about which cuisine reigns supreme. Delicious food will only get you so far without the right supplies, materials, and accurate, timely service.
In the competitive restaurant industry today where competition is hot, take note that it is food service. Food and service. These then should be your guiding principles. It’s no longer just about food hitting the pan, but also getting them from the kitchen to the customer’s table.