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Random Food Questions Thread - Page 400

post #5986 of 7342
So, I'm cooking dinner for 12 in Manhattan next week, and I had asked two friends from the wine store I go to to come along and assist with serving, taking coats, cleaning up, etc. We had confirmed two weeks ago, but never discussed a price until yesterday. The last time I cooked for this woman, I had two girls around my age to assist, each I paid $20/hr, which I thought was pretty reasonable given the nature of the job. Since my client was not entirely impressed with the performance of these girls (they were a little late to take coats and pour champagne), I decided to get more experienced help this time (the woman at the wine store is from Lyon and trained there as a waitress). So, out of respect to their seniority and level of expertise, I offered $30/hr, which I feel is quite generous--again, given the nature of the job, not to mention their apparent passion for food and wine, which I would assume makes some difference when considering wages. They both came back and said they were looking for more around $100/hr each. Well, to me, that sounded insane. So, I told them I cannot afford to pay them a collective sum of $200/hr, as that would greatly impact my profit margin for the evening.

So, anyway, my question is should I be as surprised as I am that they requested so much money, or is this what people who work private parties usually make, because I honestly have no clue.
post #5987 of 7342
That's insane. Maybe they are fucking with you or something. 20/hr plus travel expense is more than generous.
post #5988 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgm9128 View Post

So, I'm cooking dinner for 12 in Manhattan next week, and I had asked two friends from the wine store I go to to come along and assist with serving, taking coats, cleaning up, etc. We had confirmed two weeks ago, but never discussed a price until yesterday. The last time I cooked for this woman, I had two girls around my age to assist, each I paid $20/hr, which I thought was pretty reasonable given the nature of the job. Since my client was not entirely impressed with the performance of these girls (they were a little late to take coats and pour champagne), I decided to get more experienced help this time (the woman at the wine store is from Lyon and trained there as a waitress). So, out of respect to their seniority and level of expertise, I offered $30/hr, which I feel is quite generous--again, given the nature of the job, not to mention their apparent passion for food and wine, which I would assume makes some difference when considering wages. They both came back and said they were looking for more around $100/hr each. Well, to me, that sounded insane. So, I told them I cannot afford to pay them a collective sum of $200/hr, as that would greatly impact my profit margin for the evening.

So, anyway, my question is should I be as surprised as I am that they requested so much money, or is this what people who work private parties usually make, because I honestly have no clue.
Don't you think the profit margin could be better used and is more needed by the store employees than by you?
post #5989 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by itsstillmatt View Post

That's insane. Maybe they are fucking with you or something. 20/hr plus travel expense is more than generous.
I'm kind of pissed. They seemed like the types that would just do it for the fun of it.
post #5990 of 7342
i'd counter with $33/hour
post #5991 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by dopey View Post

Don't you think the profit margin could be better used and is more needed by the store employees than by you?

No, not really. I am the one doing 90% of the work. Plus, it's not like $30/hr is a kick in the bucket.
post #5992 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgm9128 View Post

No, not really. I am the one doing 90% of the work. Plus, it's not like $30/hr is a kick in the bucket.

What does the amount of work you are doing have to with anything? This is just a matter of fairness. If they thought $30 was fair, they would have been happy with that and if you can afford to pay them more and still make some profit for yourself, even if it is less, you should.
post #5993 of 7342
Tell them they don't need to split the tips with you.
post #5994 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by dopey View Post

What does the amount of work you are doing have to with anything? This is just a matter of fairness. If they thought $30 was fair, they would have been happy with that and if you can afford to pay them more and still make some profit for yourself, even if it is less, you should.

The problem is that I don't feel it's fair to pay what I feel is an obscene amount of money for the positions I require. The amount I work certainly has something to do with it. If I were to determine the amount of hours I put into one dinner against my total profit, it would be much less than $100/hr.
post #5995 of 7342
welcome to being an employer. sounds to me like you'd probably be better off going with the two you used before and giving them a little training and instruction.
post #5996 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by foodguy View Post

welcome to being an employer. sounds to me like you'd probably be better off going with the two you used before and giving them a little training and instruction.

Yeah, that's what I'm going to do. I did want to have the soup I'm serving poured tableside, but now it might be too risky. I don't want hot consommé to end up on any of these women.
post #5997 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgm9128 View Post

The problem is that I don't feel it's fair to pay what I feel is an obscene amount of money for the positions I require. The amount I work certainly has something to do with it. If I were to determine the amount of hours I put into one dinner against my total profit, it would be much less than $100/hr.
If you feel that way you should never plan on owing your own business. You'll always work at least twice as much ad anybody else and you'll pay staff what it takes to keep them happy and performing to standard while you take what's left.

I generalize some but that's more often true than not.
post #5998 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgm9128 View Post

Yeah, that's what I'm going to do. I did want to have the soup I'm serving poured tableside, but now it might be too risky. I don't want hot consommé to end up on any of these women.
that would certainly be good to avoid. but that soup presentation is dramatic and seems to me to be something older upper-east-side ladies would probably go for. depending on the course of dinner, though, it might be cool to do that yourself, pouring from a pitcher. again, depending on how many you're serving and what is coming out next.
post #5999 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cary Grant View Post

If you feel that way you should never plan on owing your own business. You'll always work at least twice as much ad anybody else and you'll pay staff what it takes to keep them happy and performing to standard while you take what's left.

I generalize some but that's more often true than not.

I understand your sentiment, but I still think the idea of that much money is absurd. If I can find someone who is willing to do the job at a fraction of the cost, yet still perform at a specific standard, that is the route I am going to take.

Quote:
Originally Posted by foodguy View Post

that would certainly be good to avoid. but that soup presentation is dramatic and seems to me to be something older upper-east-side ladies would probably go for. depending on the course of dinner, though, it might be cool to do that yourself, pouring from a pitcher. again, depending on how many you're serving and what is coming out next.

Ha. It so happens that they are older, upper-east-side ladies, so I guess it works out.
post #6000 of 7342
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgm9128 View Post


Ha. It so happens that they are older, upper-east-side ladies, so I guess it works out.
be sure and wear your little chef jacket.
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