Wtf Did I Get My Self Into? Total Rant, Need Advice

Decorating By harrisonsmama Updated 1 Mar 2009 , 6:44pm by Malakin

harrisonsmama Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 12:52am
post #1 of 21

Ok- here goes. I recently closed my shop because of flood damage and the landlords decided to sell the building. We were in the process of getting plans for my new kitchen when I was approached by owners of a new cupcakery with an offer I just couldn't pass up. They are simultaniously building an amazing restaurant and have employed world class chefs from the French Laundry in Napa and Chickalicious in New York. It just so happens that the chupcake shop is opening before the restaurant, so will employ the chefs until the restaurant opens. Problem- the Chef is an a**H^%$e! He is micromanaging everything, taking recipes and drastically changing them and really tearing apart my design work. Trouble is, everyone is affraid of him. Except me. But I have not had the pleasure of having him ridicule my work in front of me- because he might get a cupcake somewhere he woudl have to have it surgically removed. He actually says things like, "um, its just a cupcake, people" and "this is just TOO complicated".

I designed a signature design for our house cupcakes and he threw aq huge fit about it saying it would take too much time. I have ordered cutteres and fondant and have spent hours on all of the designs an now my boss is starting to question me. I am starting to wonder if the chef is going to cause problems while I am there and if I really want to be fighting with him all of the time. Becuase let me tell you, the first tiem that SOB says anything about my design, IT IS ON! I woudl never tell him how to run his kitfchen, so why can't he stay out of mine? My bosses rant an rave about how wonderful I am, how I saved them because they can;t even frost a freaking cupcake- blah blah blah and now this. I know (warning TMI)I am having my monthly enemy but this is getting a bit ridiculous. Any suggestions? You jsut might be saving someones life!~ Hahaha

20 replies
janelwaters Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 1:06am
post #2 of 21

Tell your bosses that he needs to stay out of your kitchen - he can run his and you will run yours. Obviously if "its just a cupcake" AND "its just too complicated" - he doesn't know what the hell he's talking about!!

Maybe its just TOO COMPLICATED for HIM! You know the old saying - Cooks can't BAKE! Just because he's a chef does not give him the right to talk to you like trash or talk about you like trash.

He wasn't hired to do the decorating! I would confront him about the things that he says - stand up to him and tell him you won't take his crap!

forget your monthly - this guy is an a$$!!

Rocketgirl899 Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 1:54am
post #3 of 21

checked out your photos.. you have talent.

I agree with Janel.. tell your bosses that they are paying YOU to handle the cupcakes... not him. And tell them that buy him trying to do something with it... they are paying for something 2x over. I mean he is getting payed to pick you apart.

I agree A$$.

good luck.

Oh maybe you could go adn start changing his recipes. Say something like oh you should add peanut butter to you chefs salad.... and when he shoots back a smart A$$ remark tell him that his cupcakes suggestions are even more ridiculous.

uhh some chefs are total jerks. sorry you gotta be around that. A cupcake is such a happy food.. no need for stress.

And it does sound like he has all this training... shouldn't it be easy? lol.

Though, he could say for the cost of the cupcake, the time you spend on it doesn't make sense. but IDK.

indydebi Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:00am
post #4 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by janelwaters

You know the old saying - Cooks can't BAKE!



Hey! Careful there!! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

janelwaters Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:06am
post #5 of 21

No offense Indy - I can actually cook and bake too! there are a few of us SUPER talented people - just not many! icon_wink.gif

Somehow - I doubt he's one of them!!

indydebi Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:11am
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by janelwaters

Somehow - I doubt he's one of them!!




It's sad, isn't it? That everyone can't be great like you and me? icon_biggrin.gif

(I just posted on another thread that being subtle isn't my strong point. At least I'm consistent!) icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

Rocketgirl899 Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:15am
post #7 of 21

janel and Deb.. you two crack me up!

janelwaters Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:15am
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

Quote:
Originally Posted by janelwaters

Somehow - I doubt he's one of them!!



It's sad, isn't it? That everyone can't be great like you and me? icon_biggrin.gif

(I just posted on another thread that being subtle isn't my strong point. At least I'm consistent!) icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif




It really is a shame! icon_lol.gifthumbs_up.gif

you crack me up!!

janelwaters Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:19am
post #9 of 21

Indy - something tells me you would be like me - If I were in the OP's situation I would be on here screaming about an obnoxious chef who had the nerve to say something about my cupcakes behind my back, so I got fired for shoving a cupcake up the down side of his cake hole!

My old boss used to call me and say "Good Witch or Bad Witch" - If I said Bad Witch he would just hang up! haha! At least HE really knew who was in charge!

rockysmommy Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:20am
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

Quote:
Originally Posted by janelwaters

Somehow - I doubt he's one of them!!



It's sad, isn't it? That everyone can't be great like you and me? icon_biggrin.gif

(I just posted on another thread that being subtle isn't my strong point. At least I'm consistent!) icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif




Consistent is good! thumbs_up.gif

I grew up on a very big farm...my Mom and Grandmother had all of the girls in the kitchen at the age of 9...we not only learned to prepare meals...but learned the art of baking old fashioned cakes and pies...now I feel old...LOL!!!

harrisonsmama ...I hope everything works out for you.

Cake_Princess Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 4:45am
post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by harrisonsmama

Ok- here goes. I recently closed my shop because of flood damage and the landlords decided to sell the building. We were in the process of getting plans for my new kitchen when I was approached by owners of a new cupcakery with an offer I just couldn't pass up. They are simultaniously building an amazing restaurant and have employed world class chefs from the French Laundry in Napa and Chickalicious in New York. It just so happens that the chupcake shop is opening before the restaurant, so will employ the chefs until the restaurant opens. Problem- the Chef is an a**H^%$e! He is micromanaging everything, taking recipes and drastically changing them and really tearing apart my design work. Trouble is, everyone is affraid of him. Except me. But I have not had the pleasure of having him ridicule my work in front of me- because he might get a cupcake somewhere he woudl have to have it surgically removed. He actually says things like, "um, its just a cupcake, people" and "this is just TOO complicated".

I designed a signature design for our house cupcakes and he threw aq huge fit about it saying it would take too much time. I have ordered cutteres and fondant and have spent hours on all of the designs an now my boss is starting to question me. I am starting to wonder if the chef is going to cause problems while I am there and if I really want to be fighting with him all of the time. Becuase let me tell you, the first tiem that SOB says anything about my design, IT IS ON! I woudl never tell him how to run his kitfchen, so why can't he stay out of mine? My bosses rant an rave about how wonderful I am, how I saved them because they can;t even frost a freaking cupcake- blah blah blah and now this. I know (warning TMI)I am having my monthly enemy but this is getting a bit ridiculous. Any suggestions? You jsut might be saving someones life!~ Hahaha




Why don't you have a chat with the people that approached you. Tell them how ou really feel about the situation. Work something out that way.

luv_to_decorate Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 5:02am
post #12 of 21

It sounds to me like you have the backbone to stand up to him and I think he will back off if you do have a face off. I can cook and bake too. But at lot of trained chefs can't bake and have no idea how to even begin. Hang in there and don't let him take control of your kitchen. And if the other staff see you back him down, they won't be afraid of him any more. I hate it when people think they can make other people cower and trimble when they walk in the room. That is the kind I like to take on and show them they won't push me around. Get him. Kick his tapedshut.gif

Bluehue Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 5:14am
post #13 of 21

icon_surprised.gif what a sad predicament to be in.

We have a saying over here - when people interfere....

Who's skining this rabbit - you or me - now bugger off.

Not the most lady like of sayings icon_redface.gif - but sometimes when we are being underminded and treated like a child we have to step up to the plate and just say it as it is.
Perhaps a *small* untruth - tell him that your designs are Pattened - and that what is set in ink - will be made into cake.

Very easy to say - ignore him - but if after speaking to the bosses and there is still no change - think i would go for option one - who is skining this rabbit.

Do hope it works out for you soon -
Must be a right PIA working with him around. icon_rolleyes.gif

Bh.

EnjoyTheCake Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 5:36am
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by harrisonsmama

I woudl never tell him how to run his kitfchen, so why can't he stay out of mine? My bosses rant an rave about how wonderful I am, how I saved them because they can;t even frost a freaking cupcake- blah blah blah and now this. I know (warning TMI)I am having my monthly enemy but this is getting a bit ridiculous. Any suggestions? You jsut might be saving someones life!~ Hahaha




If you don't want to confront him directly, then speak to the people who hired you. I have no professional kitchen experience, but from what I've seen on TV and read about ONLINE (I know not the best reference sources) high end kitchens do not have 1 person overseeing the entrees and the pastries. Pastry chef is its own category.

If it is making your job miserable, and you WANT to keep the job, then be civil. Don't fume about it, don't vent about, just be direct with the people responsible for paying you. If he isn't your supervisor and has no input over what you're doing, then no need to talk to him. However, if you want respect you have to give it. Try conversing with him and respect his position. He's probably feeling a pinch too. He's a chef without a kitchen of his own. Or smile politely, listen carefully, then do your own thing anyway.

I hope some of that helps.

lchristi27 Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 5:38am
post #15 of 21

Ahh, chefs. I go to a lot of tradeshows and work with a bunch of chefs because we sell ingredients. About 90% of them are pompass asses. Sorry, to any of you who are not. But seriously, these people think their you know what doesnt stink. My hubby works in a restaurant too, and it's constantly stroking ego's to get them to do ANYTHING. At one show we asked them to sample three products and tell us which one they liked the best. It was hilarious because half the time two or three were the same exact product. They all were CERTAIN they knew exactly which one was different, only about 20 of the chefs out of 200 or so got it right. But we had to tell them all how smart they are, constantly.

Sorry you have to deal with this, but I bet he is jealous that you are doing such a great job!

harrisonsmama Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 2:27pm
post #16 of 21

Thank God for all of you. I think it really helped to get it all out there. I think what I will do is have a conversation with my bosses first. They brought me on board because of my experience and talent. I have already booked 4 weddings (one is an order for 1000 cupacakes @ $8 each) two birthday cakes and loads other orders and we are not even open yet. I do not need some pompas chef ridiculing my work. I majored in architecture, so I think that qualifies me to "build" a cake. I think I will keep my distance from him- even though the kitchen will be small and I am sure he will have his nose all up in my business. If he does say anything to my face (if he actually has balls he will) I will firmly , yet politley (eventhough all I will want to do is cus atq him) set him straight and let him know I do not appreciate his comments. There is no reason to have anxiety over all of this. I just need to deal with the situation before it gets worse. Thanks to all of you for your advice. I will let you know how it all goes down. Oh- and I know I have not posted any pictures for years- I am so bad at that. I think I have lke 5 or so in my album- all my first cakes. I am much better now! Thanks to the resources on CC.

harrisonsmama Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 3:35pm
post #17 of 21

So, I just talked to my boss and she said that if the chef says anything she is going to set him straight. She said that they love my designs and that as far as she is concerned he can go _________ __________. She said not to have anxiety about him. I bet money that he says something when she is not around and then I will just have to stand my ground. I will tell him that I clear everyone of my design with my boss nd they have been approved. Furthermore, I don't need approval becuase they TRUST my opinion. Yahoo! I feel so much better!

pastryjen Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 3:49pm
post #18 of 21

WOnderful news that your boss is behind you 100%. I'd tell him to stuff it!

janelwaters Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 5:46pm
post #19 of 21

I am really glad that it has worked out for you! It would have really SUCKED if the boss was not behind you!

You go girl!! I really wish you would put up some new pics!! I love looking at other peoples work and I bet yours are AMAZING!!!

step0nmi Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 6:02pm
post #20 of 21

wow! what a situation you were in!

question...did they say they were going to speak to this chef? If they were not going to, just backing you up, then I would suggest them do that. you can't just assume responsibility of sticking up for yourself all the time...that will become stressful! I dunno...just a thought. you are making a ton of money and know what you are doing icon_wink.gif

good luck!

Malakin Posted 1 Mar 2009 , 6:44pm
post #21 of 21

Chefs, some of them are nice that I've met, some are the real pompass as##s.
What really gets them is:
Catch them working on something, walk up to them, take it out of their hands, and say I understand you may not have been paying attention in class that day when they showed you how to do this, but here is how you need to be doing it (while smiling and talking quietly all the time) proceed to SLOWLY show him....then go onto say that it's ok, my friend who teaches kindergarten children has the same problem with them all the time.

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