Restaurants’ macho culture “dwindling” – top Scots chef Fairlie
Top Chef Andrew Fairlie was speaking at the launch of the Catering in Scotland Awards (CIS). He said that the restaurant industry has made significant efforts to banish aggressive behaviour from the kitchen and that thinking that this happens in all kitchens shouldn’t put youngsters off joining the hospitality industry.
One of the categories in the CIS Awards is to identify Scotland’s Junior Chef of the Year, he lamented “the lack of young chefs entering the profession”
“When I started my career, kitchens could be brutal, violent places,” said Mr Fairlie, who runs his eponymous two Michelin Star restaurant at Gleneagles in Perthshire. “However, over the last 30 years to its great credit the industry has taken many steps to remove this aggression. The macho culture has dwindled and kitchens are nowadays often calm places where the emphasis is on order as well as creativity.”
Mr Fairlie cited a number of concerns that may put people off signing up to working in the hospitality area such as “Perceived long, unsociable hours – in addition to the impact of the confrontational nature of some TV cooking competitions – have contributed to the negative outlook of some younger, emerging chefs.
“There are pressures in any kitchen, especially in top end restaurants, but that can be part of the attraction,” he added. “The fact is, that with the huge increase in the number of restaurants, there are countless jobs out there. I don’t know any kitchen in the UK that isn’t looking for staff.”
The Junior Chef of the Year category is a new category for the awards this year and is open to chefs under 25 working at any professional level in Scottish hospitality.
Entries close at midnight on Friday 11 March.
For information about the CIS Excellence Awards email firstname.lastname@example.org, visit www.cis-excellenceawards.com or call 0131-561 7348.