Posts Tagged ‘vintage cook wear

23
Mar
11

uphill both ways… in snow.

I’ve taken a journey the past few weeks, the restaurant I’ve been cheffing at is now at full swing and I’ve tackled a great gig with savour Ottawa http://www.savourottawa.ca/ .

The president of Savour Ottawa contacted me to create the most badass gift in a goodie bag the Canadian Media and Tourism conference has ever seen –  mise en gear.

Through a long chat about Savour Ottawa’s commitment to opening the eyes of our nations capital to what our local purveyors have to offer in food – I came to an idea of the kind of representation needed to show off what we have to offer.

make peace with food.

Enter the Parliament peace tower with the best footing food here has to offer.

Not to forget the other guys I put together stamps next to a revised <savour savourez Ottawa> logo –

….cheese, more animals, veg, grains, even an egg.

I was invited to the opening gala of a weeks worth of events for this conference – of which I had a small cocktail table dressed in my kitchen gear and accompanied with an old cook friend of mine.

After the cocktails kicked in – and a mention from the organizers’ opening speech about who I was –  the questions surrounding my little table that could began.

“who are you?” “what is mise en gear?” “why are you doing this?” “what are you doing, and for who?”

…  what I like to call cooking culture.

There is no other way to describe the sweaty, bloody,fiery, rawness, angry, happy, mad, beautiful, tired, sad and happy way that cooks are while they make dinners best memories.

without sacrifice....

Thats what I tried to convey at least – and the response was surprising.

They loved it.

Enough so that I feel that it was a  success – not just for what I wanted to show but for how it was perceived.

On top of it I had the guys working the food stations begging their sous chef to buy some bandannas for them ( and make them part of the uniform…) .

The lifestyle that chefs and cooks live are something different, I’m not in the place to judge anything about it due to my bias, but I do think that what it is that we do was shown to the people that might be able to show the rest of the country.

Another small victory for the bandannas that can.

Have a good service,

j.

Satiate your heart.

03
Feb
11

whats up – whats up?

Us Canadian chefs have a different type of fun come the winter months.  We get squirrely. We try to bang on the things that are well out season in our own country – as well on the things that are.  But to be honest the Ontario winter menu mostly speaks of how much chefs yearn to be with their families – preserves, braises and stews.

This time of year for chefs is vacation time – few patrons want to go out for dinner after the Armageddon of Xmas – let alone new years -the ones that do I give my utmost respect as I garner them as the diehards.

I’m talking Bruce Willis in his 20’s – yippee kai yae kinda diehard – not the wanna bees.

I wish that us as chefs had backing as strong as this everywhere… http://foodsearchottawa.wordpress.com/home-grown/

The point being – as deranged as it could be it refines in the art of the soup.

Soup and stew has been around in every culture around the world at every part of their dominance. Either a proper consumme for a prince or – in my corner – a braise/stew mashed up of the “leftover bits” for the peasant folk.

At the heart of cooking culture is the cooks who are living under the poverty line that eat better soup than you’ve ever had outside of 1700’s Paris.

The difference being we’re not oppressed, the similarities being we’re slaves, but we live the same goodness as badness – we eat amazing food, but barely pay the rent.

The outcome – hopefully triumphant – sits dirty on a satin throne.

The best thing’s I’ve ever eaten have been during  staff meals in a Canadian winter.  Hands down the availability of seasonal ingredients combined with the want to feel warm creates the best feel good bowls of nourishment a chef can offer a chef.

Damn it feels good to be a Canadian.

Have a good service,

j.

Kung Hei Fat Choy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Kiss a Chinese person today and wish them happy new year!

28
Jan
11

the life of a chef

how to order fish

The impromptu posts, the randomness, the overall squirely nature of this blog speaks well of the life that the chef leads.

Over the past month I have been more than busy  – multi occupied.

I’ve created some banging new screens, taken in an unloved puppy as a playmate3 for my current puppy, done logistical work around the biggest restaurant to open in the Ottawa market – which I am also the chef, developed some amazing media representation of mise en gear, taken on a contract to represent Ottawa cooking culture with savour Ottawa,  and been a vendor at a massive chefs confrence here in Ottawa.

julienne a hotel pan every day for a year.
ask a cook about nightmares of a chit machine

Mostly thanks to my understanding and amazing crew at the resto I’ve sous cheffed at for 3 years, my supportive family – and especially my beautiful wife.

Alas, as any chef will tell you – the busier you get the more you long to be back behind the pass – but in mise en gear’s blog’s case – behind the keyboard.

if I sell it, I might as well be ready to cook.

So these pics tell a few thousand more stories than I can appropriately tell.

January is the month of peace for restos, why not make waves when you have a board?

have a good service,

j.

would thou be a coward in thine own esteem?  – Macbeth

 

04
Jan
11

decompression

If the madness of december has a sane side – its the family or friends we spend christmas with – even though they are, in all normallity, insane themselves.

a few candycane bandannas…

My wife and I spent a beautiful time at both of our parents homes this year – mostly in the kitchen – where all the warming memories of the holidays tend to subside.  I noticed during a 8 hour session of baking, preping, basting and creating new things to do from scratch that the dinner we were spending all day to make wasn’t nearly as fantastic as the day we spent together. My wife making my Baba’s perogies with my mother for the first time, cooking lamb racks with my father in law in the garage on charcoal while drinking single malt, the good things in life.

It’s a bit soft but I really enjoyed cooking all day with both sets of my parents, even after cooking 7 days a week for a month.

Hope you enjoyed your holidays and happy new year!

Have a good service,

j.

julia and jacques cooking at home  – wins every time

07
Nov
10

the madness, revisited.

I never imagined the chef made bandannas would ever take off.

It’s viral.

It’s the same feeling after cooking a service and flipping the restuarant 3 times.

Amazing and amazing.

First off the response – from grandmas to grandpas, uncles, aunts, mothers, cousins and all the family in between – after exposed to mise en gear, have found a relative that needs it.

Not wants – but needs.

Two years ago when I knew that I needed to wear a bandanna that I loved I never thought that someone else would too. Proven wrong with stride.

Enough back patting – what does it mean?

Firstly – the most badass cooking outfitter in Ottawa is proudly representing the mise -C. A. Paradis –  the Grandma is the entrance welcomer. 

Secondly I’ve been overtaken for the first time by etsy.com in sales versus the lets go to my locker model – Branson never had luck with that with Virgin either.

Thirdly the buzz and impact the you all have made has drawn an incredible rank of people willing to help me help you – and it couldn’t be more well received.

All of life is still a maniacs run to the loonie bin, but the guidelines are getting closer on point.

 

Have a good service,

 

j.

 

 

I’d rather have a beer with a fisherman.

 

 

26
Oct
10

A word to the editor

The past few weeks have been a mad scramble in my life – a new house, new dog, my job is changing, and so is mise en gear.

Our fantastic Sysco rep has a mutually fantastic husband who’s taken some shots of us in our kitchen with great results – the kind of shots that make the environment we live in as cooks and chefs properly represented as the gritty, funny, mad, creative, and ludicrous that it is.

I contacted him after the Ottawa Citizen got interested on running a story on mise en gear to take some more shots – the results made a bunch of cooks look like a bunch of kings and I couldn’t be any happier.

http://photosbydavidson.photoshelter.com/gallery/Mise-en-

Gear/G0000A6gaN45otQw/

Booya.

After our first anniversary this past september I felt the little bandanna company trudging uphill to deliver headgear to everyone was about to make a bit of a splash in the local kitchen culture puddle here in Ottawa.

The pictures were taken, the interview happened and now the story…

http://communities.canada.com/ottawacitizen/blogs/omnivore/default.aspx

I’m proud tipping to embarrassment over the press the past week – http://www.foodieprints.com/item/2945

Yup.

Like peering into a black box in competition I’m filled with inspiration, and I’m gitty as hell. I’m not sure what this is all going to mean for the little bandanna company that could but I think  the uphill battle is slowly starting to level out.

Have a good service,

 

j.

 

 

ordering one tomato salad – no tomato.

 

22
Sep
10

Draw like a chef!

Somethings have a way of resurfacing when you move.

My wife and I are packing to move into a new house at the end of the month, and during the process a few small black notebooks fell out of a bottom drawer – my old notebooks from working in Toronto.

This little guys were filled with prep lists, recipes, and most importantly plate sketches – each sketch had all the ingredients labeled  to aid in recreating the plate that night.  Dirty and raw all of these pages told an amazing story of the most intense cooking experience of my life.

I got to thinking about how chefs sketch out plates, how its normally very fast, very undetailed and completely illegible.  I shared my thoughts with some colleagues over a few pints at the local industry bar post service about chef’s plate sketches – total agreeance.

So why not make a game?  One person gets the paper and pen/marker and they have to draw out  a plate with the ingredients the rest of the table barks out at them – all while doing their favourite chef impersonation of course.

I found that no matter what skill of artist or cook the pictures were all the same, I also found a guy that could do a flawless Martin Yan – and cried laughing so hard.

The final product?

Its one of the more intricate prints that I’ve done but I’m really happy with it.

The juxtaposition of the half faded, stained kitchen sketched with the crisp logo/chefs’ sketch looks amazing when it’s folded up.

I’m going to wear this one for a while and think on it – a step in a good direction for sure.

I’ll have them up on Etsy soon!

Have a good service,

j.

pittsburgians don’t all like their steaks burnt.