The Orchestrator: A Glimpse Into How a Restaurant Kitchen Works
You probably skipped right over this little post on the Hartford listserv earlier this week: "Elixir Restaurant is looking for a food expeditor/ food runner.... Great opportunity for a high school person or part-time job."
It got us wondering: Just what the heck is a food expeditor?
Since the post invited applicants to stop by between 3:30 and 4:30 pm, we did.
Shawn, the bartender, was moving a case of wine, but obligingly stopped to explain. "The order comes in. The gentlemen on the line prepare it, then put it in the window." (That's the shelf you see in the foreground of the photo above.) "The expeditor coordinates the dishes so they go to the proper table. Then he or she takes the food out, ensuring that it gets to the table accurately and..." -- it was only the slightest of pauses -- "expeditiously."
Just to make sure, Shawn headed back to the kitchen, where head chef Chris Brewer was prepping for the evening rush. Chris is a man of fewer words. Bartender. Chef. No surprise.
"The expeditor? It's the orchestrator of the service," he explained. Then relented a bit. Out of the three filets and three salmon dishes that the cooks set on the shelf, for instance, the expeditor needs to know which to take. And which is rare, which well-done, which has the gluten-free version of a side.
So there it is. Working hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 5:30 to 9:00 pm.
Oh, one other thing to know. Yes, it's hot in the kitchen.