All posts by INDUSTRY STANDARD by Marsha Lynch

Don’t get all your ingredients from one store

Foodie: Someone who cares about food, takes pride in the variety of his eating habits and enjoys getting quality ingredients for his home cooking. Did you know you can buy many of the products we use in the restaurant business without ever setting foot in a retail grocery store?
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Industry Standard: Behind the Kitchen Door: Part II

In my last column, we visited the restaurant kitchen that lies behind the dining room access door and found it to be bright, hot and noisy. But who’s cooking your food?

Georges Auguste Escoffier (1846-1935) simplified the elaborate and ornate kitchen brigade first popularized by Antoine Careme, one of the codifiers of French haute cuisine. The 21st century kitchen brigade has been even further distilled, personnel-wise. Who’s cooking your food? A little bit of everyone. Let’s look at the Brigade de Cuisine in the modern restaurant kitchen, shall we?
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Industry Standard: Behind the Kitchen Door: Part I

Even if you’ve never worked in a restaurant, you’ve probably found yourself contemplating the kitchen door, wondering: What exactly is back there? How many people? How roomy is it? You have a right to be curious: They’re making your food back there.

Well, follow me. But I warn you: The kitchen in a working restaurant bears little resemblance to standard, shiny FoodTV kitchens or those “set kitchens” on the latest foodie reality TV offerings. Restaurant kitchen doors mark boundaries both geographic and symbolic, and they always lead into a totally different world from the dining room, whether the latter was cool and serene, hip and trendy, or hushed and formal. That’s all behind us now; here — put this apron on.
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Industry Standard: The Invisible Menu Page

A friend of mine recently told me she had to cut short a restaurant visit because her godson couldn’t find anything on the menu that he wanted to order. “Why didn’t you just get him a grilled cheese, or a kid’s pizza or something?” I asked. Her answer? “Those weren’t on the menu.”

All of a sudden, I realized she didn’t know about The Invisible Menu Page. I found myself wondering how many other people are unaware of this glorious restaurant phenomenon.
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Industry Standard: It’s called “the special” for a reason!

“Hi, I’ll be your server tonight. Would you like to hear about the specials?”

Thousands of diners across Louisville hear this invitation every time they dine out. Most of them will smile, nod, and then order from the menu, not realizing what they could be missing.
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Industry Standard: Always make a reservation

This week it’s my pleasure to introduce an old friend from LouisvilleHotBytes.com and the local restaurant community. Marsha Lynch, the pastry chef at Café Lou Lou, is a culinary graduate of Sullivan University and has worked at Louisville independent restaurants, including Limestone, Jack Fry’s, Jarfi’s and L&N Wine Bar and Bistro.

From time to time, Marsha will step up to join me on this pulpit with a new column, “Industry Standard,” subtitled “Insider info for those who dine out,” a hearty menu of tips and tidbits aimed at offering the dining public a fresh view of the restaurant business from an insider’s perspective.

–RG

Always make a reservation

“What’s on the book?”
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