Posts tagged ‘announcements’

Reality Hasn’t Settled In Yet

Sorry, no post yet. I’m still trying to get my thoughts to settle, as well as finishing the details on my impending move. Hang in there, folks. I haven’t forgotten about you.

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Time Is Ticking

Armanzo’s last day is Saturday. Mine is a week after that. Urgh, I’m nervous and my heart is aching. I feel like I’ve come such a long way and now I’m leaving everything I’ve built up to another (younger) generation. (Of course, “younger” is hyperbolic since our newer line cooks are as old/older than me.)

I’m sorry I haven’t kept up with the blog as well as I should have, especially when I could’ve talked about work in relation to the end of my tenure at avec. I’m just really, really lazy >_< I humbly beg for forgiveness!

I worked on Station 3 tonight. Fred was on 2, and new girl Monica was on 1. Fred's coming into his own, but he's still got some stumbling blocks. Who doesn't? I'm not perfect either when I'm on 2, but I'm a lot more confident than I used to be. And I'm not as intimidated as I was when I was first thrown onto the station. THAT day will forever live on infamy in my heart. But I overcame it, and man, am I that much stronger for it.

Speaking of strong, station 3 doesn't even phase me anymore. I don't know if it's just my competence level or they way the tickets were running, but every time I'm on 3 now, I have really easy nights. (So easy, I don't even bother to write about them.) I can't believe I used to have trouble cooking hangar steaks to medium-rare or getting out cheese plates in a timely fashion. I can even easily converse with diners now (if I choose to do so). Working the station has been going so smoothly, I can even help out Station 2, when they're busy, by starting/finishing their fish dishes for them. I've found myself a lot of the time searing Armanzo's and Fred's merluza (aka hake) or flipping salmon and pulling beans off the heat. I know I help Armanzo, but I've definitely saved Fred some Station 2 grief. It's hard enough for a newbie to worry about rolling out (and not burning) focaccia without having to deal with extraneous fish dishes as well.

That said, tonight was a mellow, easy-paced night. Earlier today Fred brought in a quart of jasmine rice, which I cooked off and cooled. Later in the night, Fred and I tag-teamed to prep out ingredients for fried rice for comida/staff meal. It was fun. "Oh you know, it's just a couple of Asians making some fried rice," I joked. We made two kinds, pork and chicken, which turned out AWESOME. Server Giulietta said she doesn't like rice and she couldn't stop eating it. Sontra hardly ever partakes in comida and she actually grabbed a bowl. I'm gonna toot my own horn: it was good. Rice is king! A billion Asians can't be wrong!

I'm back on 2 tomorrow. Fun times. (Famous last words?)

Oh, I'd also like to mention that in the vein of leaving a legacy (to the younger avec generation), Fred (and to a lesser extent, Rachel) have picked up my habit of calling out the order of firing stuff "at leisure". I started saying it because I didn't want the line cooks to feel like they'd have to rush a dish the minute I told them to cook it, and also, it helped me keep courses paced out enough in a timely fashion without me having to eagle-eye ticket times. Hopefully they also carry on my Saturday night tradition of bringing in something/making comida as a light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel as well as my bordering-on-OCD love of cutting parchment paper. It warms my heart that in some ways I'll still be around even when I'm gone.

Gone Fishing

sniffle sniffle say it isn’t so!

Sorry dear friends, the Kitchen & the Egg will be on a bit of a hiatus until I get over my writer’s block. See you in a little bit.

While My Eyes Gently Weep

So… I’m currently on vacation. I usually don’t usually update the blog during this time (or my off days either) because I’m not working and there’s nothing to say. But something happened that had to be noted.

Two days ago I got a text from Koren saying how she loved me and would miss me. Thinking that she forgot I was on vacation, I thought nothing of it and just replied how I loved her back. I may have wondered about the wording but then again, I tend to take things at face value a lot.

A couple of hours later during a drive, I got a text from an old coworker asking how avec was doing, he’d just read an article about mom (Koren’s nickname).

“I’m outta town right now. Everything was fine when I left. What did the article say?”

“That Koren left avec. Officially.”

….

WHATDAFUQ?

And when I got back, I hopped on eater and there it was, about how she’d left. But nothing about why.

I have my theories on why she did, though they don’t mean shit until I get the truth or some more details. Until then, I texted Ruth asking stuff. Apparently there’d been a meeting about her departure. Paul and Donnie were both getting “misty”. Apparently Publican’s Earling will take over. My first reaction was: AUGH! WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO US ALL?!??! But with a couple days passing I’m over it now. Koren’s left. I’m leaving. I mean, the change was in the wind. I’m out soon and for better or for worse, avec’s gonna weather the storm.

Been Over It

I don’t know if it’s a coincidence or just the fickle ways of the Kitchen Gods, but every time Armanzo works Station 2, he seems to be on the receiving end of a beating. Tonight flatbread was popping off, like for serious. It seemed as if every other ticket had flatbread on it, and more often than not it was as a first course. Meanwhile I’m on Station 3 twiddling my thumbs, feeling REALLY bad that I can’t help out in this kind of situation. The most I could really do was to cook off the occasional order of redfish or plate up some anchovy. Yeah… really helpful.

Armanzo said that he sold 24 flatbread. WTF?!?! It blows my mind on so many levels. How is it possible that he sold less focaccia? Why was the flatbread so popular tonight? Why is Armanzo constantly getting raped on Station 2? It didn’t help that earlier that night, Giulietta accidentally knocked over a pint of oil all over his station =_=;;;
All I can say is, I am SOOOOOO glad I wasn’t working that station tonight, or else you’d be reading a completely different blog entry. Probably full of cursing and maybe a lot of crying and recounting how I had another meltdown or something.

That said, I had a really good night on Station 3.

In other news, we have another addition to our avec family, albeit a part-time one. Her name is Linda, and she’s friends with Armanzo, having worked at the Publican and Perennial. She’s very sweet and she’s the owner of a beautiful Corian knife that makes me want to run out and buy more knives. She’ll be working with us for two days out of the week (don’t quote me on this), so yay for having another girl on the line!

Looking To The East

Times are a-gettin’ desperate sort of and we’ve been getting in stages to try to fill positions left by others. It was a little disheartening when everytime I’d come in Amranzo would tell me a stage had cancelled 😦 Come on! We’re awesome! (Aside from the brutally long service and shtuff.) Oh well, your loss.

Anyway, yesterday we finally hired someone. Um… he’s not my first pick, but we’re kinda desperate (eeek!) and he’s not too shabby. He got line time last night and he did alright. He didn’t burn any dates and he wasn’t too agonizingly slow >.>;;;
Anyway! Welcome to the family, Andrew! He starts officially next week.

We’ve been joking that avec has been becoming more and more Asian lately. There’s me (Chinese), Fred (Thai), and Ruth (who watches so much anime she’s now infused with a little bit of Japanese, haha). And now Andrew, who is Korean. Ruth and I jokingly tried to poach Blackbird’s Lorraine (Vietnamese) because we need more girls on the line but it was not to be. To add to the funniness, Ruth and I have been slowly stocking up dry storage with Asian staples like soy sauce, miso, and Shaoxing cooking wine. A couple of weeks ago I bought a bag of sushi rice, and am aiming to bring in some furikake. No worries, all of this stuff was for the intent of using them for comida, but then again, Fred’s newest chicken dish on the menu has lemongrass and fish sauce and doesn’t even try to pretend to be Mediterranean….

I’m just pleased that with Andrew as a new addition, Fred will probably see some station 3 action, and hopefully, if I’m still here by the time Fred is proficient enough, we’ll all be scheduled together on the line and it’ll be a freakin’ HOOT. Mwahahahahaha!

Beta Female

Don’t be alarmed since it’s long passed, but for about an hour or so today, I was really tired of being a line cook/kitchen slave and therefore, really tired of my life, and disappointed in myself for not being able to defend myself against other people’s bullshit.

Therefore I’ve decided I’ll be leaving avec this year. I’ve been maintaining a ridiculously long-distance relationship for a while now and so I’d been considering moving to be with him sometime next year. I guess it’s just time to transition now. It was due time.

That said, Monday night service was a suckfest. And then a 10-top of Asians came in and sat down at 11:40pm, just when all I really wanted to do was break down my station and go home since I had to open the next day. Sigh. The life of a line cook wannabe….