So thanks to portlandfoodanddrink.com I discovered a very interesting article in The New York Times. The basic premise of the article was the effect of marijuana in professional kitchens. The article is a bit boring but you should read it before continuing on, so here it is http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/19/dining/19pot.html .
My problem with this article is it’s lack of depth. Ganja has been prevalent is every single kitchen I have ever worked in. Cooks smoke weed by the garbage cans on their breaks. Cooks smoke weed in employee bathrooms. Cooks smoke weed in the walk in freezers. And yes, I have even seen weed smoked in the kitchen and exhaled into the exhaust hoods. And after they get high they make tempura batter and fry everthing in sight to munch on. Everything from onions, bacon and potatoes to chocolate.
Let’s not stop there. Cocaine has made it’s way into plenty of kitchens as well. I worked for a chef/owner a while back that would get through his crazy 18 hour days by cutting rails on the pass with a paring knife, and snort it with a rolled up dupe. Seriously crazy shit to see on a daily basis, but he was an amazing talent in the kitchen. Now that I am remebering back, he used to refer to it as “getting focused.”
Let’s quickly talk about booze in the kitchen. It’s hard for me to remember working with any cooks who didn’t drink. Nothing soothes the wounds of getting crushed on a busy night like a cold beer. Well, maybe 8 cold beers. Any of you servers ever wonder why bartenders never have to ring their dinners in? They keep us “hydrated.” Try buying the kitchen a round at the bar next time, your life at work wil get a lot easier.
In no way am I condoning drug or alcohol use while on the clock, I am simply stating that it goes on. It can ruin your life and destroy a kitchen. But then again, is weed really even a drug?