General Question

ninjacolin's avatar

What do gourmet chefs think about chefs who work for Kraft, Kellogs, Campell's Soup, store brands and the like?

Asked by ninjacolin (14206points) February 7th, 2010

Do they consider them “not real chefs” ??

Door-to-door Salesmen consider car sales men as “order fillers” and not real salesmen.

Underground Hip hop artists, consider pop rap as not representative of “real” hip hop.

Many christian faiths consider other christian faiths to be “not true christianity”

is there such a stigma in the chef world depending on occupation?

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7 Answers

Buttonstc's avatar

One of the most knowledgeable and highly respected chefs with a worldwide reputation once worked developing menus for Howard Johnson’s Restaurants back in the day and it certainly hasn’t done him any harm. Jacques Pepin speaks of this aspect of his early career so it’s certainly nothing to be ashamed about.

Currently, a guy widely respected for his encyclopedic knowledge of food, Alton Brown, appears in commercials for Welch’s grape juice and it doesn’t seem to have done him any harm either.

I suppose there may be some snobby pretentious ( or jealous) chefs who tout themselves as being above such things as crass commercialism, who may look down their noses a bit.

But if someone has the “goods” it doesn’t really matter who says what. By that I mean that if they have a good solid culinary education and/or experience under their belt combined with dedication and creativity, it tends to render others’ snobbishness a moot point.

Some have been hyper-critical of Rachel Ray, but she has NEVER claimed to be a chef. She describes herself as a practical home cook and she’s very unpretentious about it. Were she the opposite of that, I could cede their right to gripe.

Her recipes aren’t really my cup of tea, but she prsents herself and her skills and training ( or lack thereof) very honestly so I think a lot of the complaining is just sour grapes. Even she refuses to call herself a chef, so why are all these chefs griping. Apples and Oranges.

The qualities she does possess like dedication and willingness to work really really hard (killer hours and a hectic schedule) are what has made her a success and she deserves the fruits of her labors.

I suppose that excessive commercialism can be a shortcut to easy money for some, but the ones THEY seem to complain about the most are the ones who have worked the hardest to attain the commercial success they now enjoy.

ninjacolin's avatar

nice. wow.. that speaks to all the arts, i guess.

but what’s really concerning me..
“I suppose there may be some snobby pretentious ( or jealous) chefs who tout themselves as being above such things as crass commercialism, who may look down their noses a bit.

isn’t the commercialism stuff. it’s the quality of work. specifically, the amount of preservatives they get stuck using. fresh food is always so much better… hmm.. i suppose it could go either way. Maybe store brands are more challenged chefs than restaurant dudes since they’re always planning against rotting when they cook.. maybe restaurant chefs are the little brother.

rottenit's avatar

When I was thinking about becoming a chef I shadowed my uncle for a day he was a chef and ran the walgreens cafeteria, I was shocked to see 3 CIA graduated chefs working at an employee cafeteria.

casheroo's avatar

Money is money.

Chikipi's avatar

I went to culinary school and many of my classmates branched out on different avenues. I think if you work for a brand name company it is okay…maybe once you climb the ladder you can design new recipes for them. I think the creativity is still there no matter what.
Like @casheroo said money is money. If they are happy with with thier path, who cares what other people see it as

ninjacolin's avatar

btw, i was just curious if there was a hierarchy. i don’t know that there is one.

casheroo's avatar

@ninjacolin Yes, there is a hierachy..but not really pertaining to that aspect of cooking. Most people recognize that a stable job is extremely important, especially if you have a family to support. Those companies give benefits..which a lot of high end restaurants do not. And the high end places usually pay crap (think of the fancy smancy restaurant downtown). So, you may get to say “I work here” but you don’t get the healthcare benefits or stability that the other guy has.

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