Usually thought of to be a privilege only the wealthiest of people could afford, requests for private chefs are actually growing in demand, more than ever before. When most people hear of private chefs, they usually imagine something along the lines of a live-in chef at the mansion of some super-wealthy actor or hedge fund manager. Although this does still exist, what is requested of private chefs these days is changing.
A person’s eating habits today are much different than they were just a few years ago. With people adopting specialized diets and choosing to cut things such as soy, gluten, dairy and/or carbs, private chefs who specialize in a specific type of cooking (such as vegetarian, gluten-free or dairy-free) are exponentially increasing in demand. People today are also much more health conscious. Many private chefs are being contracted to aid in their clients’ goals of eating healthier or losing weight.
In the anonymous confessions of a private chef who was working for a famous star, she talks about how her client was trying to achieve a certain body type for an upcoming role. Since she was “on the clock” 24 hours a day, her job entailed tasks such as limiting her client’s consumption of the bread basket when they went out to eat, or conferring with the chefs at a restaurant to make special requests for an order that aligned with her client’s diet. Just know that these are only two examples of the many different things that you might do if you become a private chef.
Many private chefs have moved beyond working for a single family or client, being available at any hour of the day to whip up whatever is requested of them. Instead, they are working for multiple clients, visiting their homes a couple of times a month to prepare a bulk amount of meals for their clients to heat up at their own convenience.
If you choose to become a private chef in today’s world, it is imperative that you develop a keen sense of awareness for what your clients like to eat as well as what they don’t like; whether this is taking note of their dietary restrictions and intolerances, what their favorite meals are, or what types of cuisine they like best. It is also important to keep up with the latest diet fads and cooking styles. Promote this when looking for new clients to make sure that your appointment book is always full.
William Blackburn, a Chicago-based personal chef, received an overwhelming amount of requests for his services once he wrote on his website about his gluten intolerance. Since talking about his “dedication to cooking without gluten, dairy and genetically modified food,” he has been inundated with emails and phone calls from potential clients.
He has had to turn down a lot of people so he can keep up his dedication to provide his existing clients with the best-tasting food to fulfill their specialty diets. Mr. Blackburn is also lucky because there are very few private chefs working in Chicago (there are about 12) and a lot of people are looking to hire them. The market for private chefs is also something to be cognizant of.
Aside from booking a repeat client as a private chef, you can also look to book single events. Many wealthy clients look to private chefs for coming up with specialized menus for the dinner parties and events they host in their homes. Oftentimes, you will have to come up with a menu that may follow everything from a certain theme to one that reflects the flavors of the season.
If pursuing a career as a private chef is something that piques your interest, it is of utmost importance to make sure that you are fully trained and experienced in all aspects of your profession. It is also important to keep up on your training to make sure that you can offer the most advanced and current culinary trends available.
If you are looking for a place to start your culinary education, visit the Star Career Academy website. Their fully comprehensive programs will give you the knowledge and hands-on experience you will need to start your career in the culinary field.