Brigade de cuisine (French: [bʁiɡad də kɥizin], kitchen brigade) is a system of hierarchy found in restaurants and hotels employing extensive staff, commonly referred to as "kitchen staff" in English-speaking countries.
The concept was developed by Georges Auguste Escoffier (1846-1935). This structured team system delegates responsibilities to different individuals who specialize in certain tasks in the kitchen.
List of positions
This is a comprehensive list of the different members of the kitchen brigade. Only the largest of establishments would have an extensive staff of this size. As noted under some titles, certain positions are combined into other positions when such a large staff is unnecessary. Note: Despite the use of chef in English as the title for a cook, the word actually means "chief" or "head" in French. Similarly, cuisine means "kitchen", but also refers to food or cooking generally, or a type of food or cooking.
- Chef de cuisine (kitchen chef; "chief of the kitchen")
- is responsible for overall management of kitchen; supervises staff, creates menus and new recipes with the assistance of the restaurant manager, makes purchases of raw food items, trains apprentices, and maintains a sanitary and hygienic environment for the preparation of food.
- Sous-chef de cuisine (deputy/second kitchen chef; "under chief")
- receives orders directly from the chef de cuisine for the management of the kitchen, and often serves as the representative when the chef de cuisine is not present.
- Saucier (saucemaker/sauté cook)
- prepares sauces and warm hors d'oeuvres, completes meat dishes, and in smaller restaurants, may work on fish dishes and prepare sautéed items. This is one of the most respected positions in the kitchen brigade.
- Chef de partie (senior chef; "chief of the group")
- is responsible for managing a given station in the kitchen, specializing in preparing particular dishes there. Those who work in a lesser station are commonly referred to as a demi-chef.
- Cuisinier (cook)
- is an independent position, usually preparing specific dishes in a station; may also be referred to as a cuisinier de partie.
- Commis (junior cook)
- also works in a specific station, but reports directly to the chef de partie and takes care of the tools for the station.
- Apprenti(e) (apprentice)
- are often students gaining theoretical and practical training in school and work experience in the kitchen. They perform preparatory work and/or cleaning work.
- Plongeur (dishwasher or kitchen porter)
- cleans dishes and utensils, and may be entrusted with basic preparatory jobs.
- Marmiton (pot and pan washer, also known as kitchen porter)
- in larger restaurants, takes care of all the pots and pans instead of the plongeur.
- Rôtisseur (roast cook)
- manages a team of cooks that roasts, broils, and deep fries dishes.
- Poissonnier (fish cook)
- prepares fish and seafood dishes.
- Entremetier (entrée preparer)
- prepares soups and other dishes not involving meat or fish, including vegetable dishes and egg dishes.
- Garde manger (pantry supervisor; "food keeper")
- is responsible for preparation of cold hors d'oeuvres, pâtés, terrines and aspics; prepares salads; organizes large buffet displays; and prepares charcuterie items.
- Tournant (spare hand/roundsman)
- moves throughout the kitchen, assisting other positions in kitchen.
- Pâtissier (pastry cook)
- prepares desserts and other meal-end sweets, and for locations without a boulanger, also prepares breads and other baked items; may also prepare pasta for the restaurant.
- in larger restaurants, prepares candies and petit fours instead of the pâtissier.
- in larger restaurants, prepares frozen and cold desserts instead of the pâtissier.
- in larger restaurants, prepares show pieces and specialty cakes instead of the pâtissier.
- Boulanger (baker)
- in larger restaurants, prepares bread, cakes, and breakfast pastries instead of the pâtissier.
- Boucher (butcher)
- butchers meats, poultry, and sometimes fish; may also be in charge of breading meat and fish items.
- Aboyeur (announcer/expediter)
- takes orders from the dining room and distributes them to the various stations; may also be performed by the sous-chef de partie.
- prepares the meal served to the restaurant staff.
- Garçon de cuisine ("kitchen boy")
- in larger restaurants, performs preparatory and auxiliary work for support.
- Dominé, André (ed.). Culinaria France. Cologne: Könemann Verlagsgesellschaft mbh, 1998. ISBN 978-3-8331-1129-7
- The Culinary Institute of America (2006). The Professional Chef (8th ed.). Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-0-7645-5734-7.
- Patrick Rambourg, Histoire de la cuisine et de la gastronomie françaises, Paris, Ed. Perrin (coll. tempus n° 359), 2010, 381 pages. ISBN 978-2-262-03318-7