Playing With Fire & FOH Uniform

Today, I lit food on fire.  Normally, this is not a good thing and it usually means that something has gone bad wrong in the cooking vessel, but not today.  Tableside cherries jubilee requires a flambé!  I have to say that I never tire of watching the first year’s faces when they are the ones closest to the flambé at the table.  They’ll be talking and laughing and not paying any attention to me and then WHOOSH, and they jump back.  They can usually feel a little heat from the fire, but I’m probably the one that’s in more danger than they are.

Cherries Jubilee

Step 1.  Lit your heat source.  Set a polished copper pan on top of it.

Step 2.  Melt roughly one stick of butter in the bottom of the pan.  The more the better.  You can’t end up with too much.

Step 3.  Add white sugar, a few tablespoons.

Step 4.  Take pan OFF heat source. Add kirsch, (cherry flavored brandy) in a stream AWAY from you.  Tip the edge of the pan into the flames on the heat source and light that sucker on fire!  Tip the pan level again and place back on heat source.

Step 5. Add gross canned cherries.  Don’t use canned if it can be helped-they look like black olives and have a horrible consistency.

Step 6. Take pan OFF heat source.  Add second brandy.  Do not light this one on fire, simply set it flat back on the flame.  It could light on fire, despite your best efforts.  This is not a bad thing.

Step 7.  Add reserve cherry juice if sauce needs more color.

Step 8.  Reduce sauce.  Serve cherries and sauce over vanilla ice cream.

Two of my friends were having a competition during service to see who’s flame would be bigger.  I only saw one of theirs, but it was pretty tall.  Oh boys…  The flambé tableside was pretty fun, but I don’t think I’ll get to do it again.  I’ve been the person in charge of tableside three times already in class; I’ve put in my dues.

Front of the House Uniform

The front of the house (FOH) uniform is much different than a lab uniform, so I thought I’d post about that uniform too!

Super hot shoes

  • Black socks, non slip polished shoes.  I just wipe my shoes off with a damp towel.

Very wrinkled FOH jacket

  • This hideous jacket.  It stains like nobody’s business, it wrinkles super easily and we only got one.  So every night, I have to iron this jacket.  Bitch, moan, bitch moan.  The other jackets we wear are much more comfortable.  The FOH jackets feel like they’re made of cardboard.

This might be the best picture ever of myself.


  • Dress pants.  If I could only explain to you how stupid I feel in these pants.  They are clearly men’s pants that they are making much smaller women wear.  You’re not kidding anyone when you say these are unisex pants, JWU.  The fly is like six inches long and this picture doesn’t do them justice, but if I pull them up all the way, they come over my belly button.  They also do wonders for your ass and make it look huge.

Another glorious shot. And you can see my elbow protector in this picture too.


  • Apron.  It makes us look fancy or something.

Mise en place.


  • Tiny note book for taking orders and for holding pens.  There are also a ton of empty sugar packets leftover from “table maintenance.”  We have to pick up all the sugar packets that people use for their coffee, or tea.


Well, that concludes the FOH uniform discussion.  Two more days of this and I’m back where I belong, in the kitchen!  Be well & happy eating!


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