What's it like to be a kitchen porter?

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nobodyishere888
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Hey, am looking for a part-time job for over summer, and a local Italian restaurant are looking for a kitchen porter.

Was just wondering, has anyone else worked as a kitchen porter, and if so, what's the job like?

I've heard from a friend that it's really crappy, but I'd like a few more opinions.

Also, is it just doing lots of washing up or anything else?

Thanks
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ames123
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I don't know if it's the same as what I did but when I was about 14 I worked in the kitchen of a pub. Basically just loaded and unloaded the dishwasher, did the salads and fetched things from the garage (stored the food). Then at the end of the night I cleaned the surfaces and mopped the floor of the kitchen. I normally felt a bit dirty at the end of the night but apart from that wasn't too bad. Didn't have to talk to customers, just got on with the job!
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LethalBizzle
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Washing up, emptying b
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andy_cole2
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(Original post by thisisnic)
Hey, am looking for a part-time job for over summer, and a local Italian restaurant are looking for a kitchen porter.
its absolutel y****ing ****, the most knackering piece of crap i've ever been involved in. i've never been so tired coming out of work, well not for a long time anyway. i was making just over 50 quid a night and i was working *****ing hard doing everything. if your not getting 6 an hour you're getting totally owned but if you are then i'd consider it cos jobs arne't exactly easy to fin dths time of year...
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vaseand
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To be honest its crap. Ive done it for over 3 years and it never really gets any better expecially when its me by myself and its a busy night. But its simple and straight forward. Plus its the only sort of job available where i live.
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Spotty Dog
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It depends what you want to do.

My partner started life as a kitchen porter at the age of 14. He worked damn har and proved his worth. He's currently Chef du Parti (Head of Larder) at Michelin's Pub of the Year 2008. He's never got a qualification top his name, everything he's got is off his own experience. He worked so damn hard at his job, and kept bugging Head Chef to give him a break and he got it.

On the original question, it's damn hard work. I KP as bank staff for a few pubs around the area. It's dirty, filthy work with a lot of graft involved. But, when you get the right place that respects their staff, you are genuinely treated as a member of the team, as important as the chefs. Plus, the tips aren't bad!! (Partner is bringing home over £200 in tips every week. :O)
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poorstudent
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It's really crap i was a kitchen porter for a week then i quit!

You have to make sure all the pots/pans/plates/knifes/forks all that jazz are cleaned dried and put in the correct places otherwise the chefs are going to scream at you.

it's hectic, hot, chefs shouting, swearing heads off.

You have to take out rubbish to the bins, make sure all the kitchen area is tidy and wash all the stuff, basically it.

sucks when its a busy fri/sat night too..
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Spotty Dog
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(Original post by poorstudent)
It's really crap i was a kitchen porter for a week then i quit!

You have to make sure all the pots/pans/plates/knifes/forks all that jazz are cleaned dried and put in the correct places otherwise the chefs are going to scream at you. Well, yes. That's because in a busy kitchen, you're turning the whole restaurant around 3 times or more every night. That works out to be about 10 minutes cooking time per table, really. And that can't be wasted finding cutlery that some jumped up KP hasn't put in the right place!! Equally, if the cutlerys not clean, tips go down. It's a simple equasion, and no one likes losing money.

it's hectic, hot, chefs shouting, swearing heads off. Someones been watching too much Kitchen Nightmares.... Either that, or the chefs REALLY can't work together

You have to take out rubbish to the bins, make sure all the kitchen area is tidy and wash all the stuff, basically it. Were you expecting something different?

sucks when its a busy fri/sat night too..
:flute:
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Dan111
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its a really easy job, it can be hard work but time passes quickly, you get to listen to music, the banter is funny, you get free food and tips... dont have to deal with customers moaning and chefs only scream at you if you are being a ******
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tearingfuture
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It really varies depending on the place, i've only ever worked front of house, but I agree with everyone above me, even though they all say different things. The job itself could just be washing dishes, or could involve things like preparing basics like salad etc, the KPs at frankie and benny's make the desserts too. If you're tall, your back will get a lot of abuse, I did one shift washing dishes last month and could barely drive home after
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bunnyhug
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I worked for about a month doing mostly washing up and sometimes preparing a desert or a salad. It doesn't sound that bad, but in my experience it was hell. I got filthy and incredibly sweaty within about ten minutes of arriving, the piles of disgusting dishes was never ending- seriously, you'd be done with one load and think you could rest for a minute, and then another huge pile would come through- I could never get the deserts done quickly enough and I was often expected to be doing about a hundred things at once, all for minimum wage at a place where the manager didn't call me by my right name once! The worst job I have EVER had and even though I needed the money, I had to quit. I felt like bursting into tears every time a new load of dishes arrived, and the rubber gloves gave me a rash
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HandsomeBWonderful
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Mind-numbingly boring i should imagine.
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Cornish student
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Will have been doing it for 3 years by the time I leave for uni, I'm the second longest serving member of staff in the restuarant! haha

The job varies a lot depending on a few things, mainly:
  • The kitchen team of the evening
  • Responsibility - though cleaning is the main job, you can get experience to actually cook the meals and help prep the final product
  • How busy the evening is
  • How
many dishes are waiting for you when you arrive

Usually, the evening is pretty chilled out if you work in a quieter small restaurant (the kitchen where I work is only big enough for about 4 members of staff to work at the same time!). However, sometimes the evening is too busy and chefs can be rude, it just makes you want to scream at someone It comes with the territory I suppose...

At least the tips can be good. You can get paid minimum wage, not earn enough to pay any tax or NI contributions but then get like an additional £10-15 tip at the end of the evening to spend on whatever
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Rich_183
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Don't do it unless YOU ARE DESPERATE FOR MONEY because its such a **** job, trust me, I worked as a KP last summer for 3 months, you work your ass off in the worst conditions, get soaking wet and covered in **** from dirty plates! then you gota carry a **** load of plates around the kitchen to stock up whilst the dirty plates are piling up so unless your an octopus, the plates start overloading because the front of house ***** dont bother clearing the food off cos the bin is full because you don't have time to empty it then the chefs demand more clean plates and so the endless cycle keeps on going, avaoid at all costs unless your desperate and don't mind being treated like scum of the earth!!
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Botticello
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I haven't been one but I did a shift in a seafood bar in chester races, putting bottles of champagne and opening endless beers for the waitresses and doing pot wash which is putting dirty dishes in the dishwasher in a cramped space with one tiny dishwasher. It was the most boring stressful shift I've had and the supervisors were *****es. If it's a quiet restaurant it might be alright but if you're desperate you could always give it a try.
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pnorm
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I've been doing it on my gap year so I can go travelling so to be honest I can't complain about having a **** job. But one chef always goes on about how well treated I am, how little work I have to do compared to when he did it when the pub did fresh food. I don't believe him entirely, I believe he probably had a lot more pots and pans but there were 2 KP's back then, it's only me now.

Chefs are always asking me to do random stuff like desserts, starters, get them stuff from out the back, clean this, clean that, hurry up we got to be out here by 10 etc. List goes on. Also some encourage me to give **** to others if they aren't doing their job right but if I do they just won't help me for the rest of the night so it's not worth it. It just ****s me right off how I'm treated as the lowest member of the team when I'm working the hardest. I've done their job, I got to do it when we had 2 KP's going throughout the week and it was ****ing bliss, you do barely any work, you basically wait for food to cook and clean in the meantime, not hard and you have a kp working their butt off which makes it even easier.
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pnorm
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Also most waiters and waitresses are ****ing lazy, don't stack plates, complain about it being too quiet or too busy and taddle to the manager if you do something wrong when they can't even do the most simple tasks. And obviously the manager sides with them because the manager is front of house and spends most of their time socialising and befriending the front of house staff.
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pnorm
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Also veterans of the hospitality industry will give you constant abuse. Example, manager trainee comes up the stairs, asks me to move some things so he can mop an area he said the waiters mop normally. He finishes and expects me to give him a gold medal, (I didn't say thank you because I thought it was his job). Another example, manager gives me **** because I apparently put too much thousand island dressing on a salad. Fair enough, I'll make it again... nope, acts as immature as possible, grabs a spoon starts picking up the dressing and chucking it back down into the salad to make it look even worse when they get back up managers to see how **** it is. Then the second manager gives even more abuse whilst making sarcy comments then LATER that evening tells me how easy I have it and when he was a KP he had to do all my job, then also clean all the cutlery AND he even said TO MY FACE that he was AWESOME. I almost quit that night but **** it I can't find another job anywhere.
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Doc.Daneeka
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I don't particularly want to bump an old thread, however.... I could really do with a bit of venting after getting a job as a KP for a well known oriental restaurant.

The support for learning the job is left down to the other KP that happens to be on shift. This means that I've had to learn different, often conflicting, methods of getting the job done and this has led me to having big gaps in knowledge of the job; there have been way too many times when I've been asked to do something, I reply asking how it is done, only to then hear the other KP say "oh, you don't know?". No dips**t, I've been here for three days, of course I know- I know everything :rolleyes:

The job itself is a combination of graft and timing- grafting to get things cleaned and timing to take out rubbish, return dishes and equipment to the kitchen, and glasses to the waiting staff. What would make the job easier is if the waiting staff organised the trays they brought back to me so that I didn't have to organise plastics, wood, paper and food waste into separate bins before even getting started on washing dishes. Of course, they throw the s**t in whatever way is quickest for them so my job takes longer than it has to.

In addition to dish washing and crap like that, I have to bring in the delivery, check it, and then put it away into fridges etc. This, like the rest of my job, should be easy as it is really simple, but it isn't because the fridges and freezers are both tiny and already full of produce.

The staff are a mixed bag: some are friendly- typically the ones that can't or won't ever care if you're doing your job well, such as the waiting staff. The kitchen staff are less friendly and expect a lot but as of yet they have been okay to me. The management are friendly and might ask how it's going but they mainly seem concerned with whether or not I continue to show up for work.

All in all, I would suggest anyone to seriously reconsider taking on a job as a kitchen porter unless you intend on building up a career in the restaurant business. The only reason I'm not going to jack it in is because it's easier to get another job you're already employed, otherwise I'd be saying Sayonara!
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iambenson
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yip its hell....i have worked in many places, i have dug roads, shoveled human **** all day, barreled soil all day..worked in metal melting ovens while they r still very warm with full suit on and air mask with a air chisel for 10 hours, yet i would rather b back do-in any off them as opposed 2 do-in a kitchen porter job...i work in a very busy hotel which does weddings(between 80 and 300 guests ),functions and has a couple of restaurants and has 2 kitchens in the same area and yes u have to do both and i am always on 5pm till finish which is the worst shift by far... i have also worked at the hotel owners pub and it is like night and day...(so easy)...my advice is quite simple if it is very busy place stay clear, if it is a pub or something similar give it a go...
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