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joesan

Yes Chef? No Chef!

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This is something that is quite rare in the UK. I don't think I've ever seen Chef used as a title in the press. You'll occasionally see it used as a job title i.e. "chef Gordon Ramsey" as opposed to "Chef Gordon Ramsey", although that's a bad example as I doubt there are many people here who don't know what he does for a living! Outside of workplaces I don't think I've heard it in speech either, I certainly wouldn't use it. If I were introduced to a respected chef I'd say something along the lines of "pleased to meet you Mr Bloomenthal"

Even in a professional setting it's still quite rare to hear Chef Smith etc. You certainly here plain Chef a lot, it tends to be that or first name. In a restaurant I used to manage it was always first name terms until the pressure was really on when it naturally reverted to Chef. There were no rules about this, it was quite instinctive, I always thought it happened because Chef was exerting more control over proceedings to keep everything running smoothly.

However, to claim that an accomplished chef deserves less respect than a doctor or a professor because "the doctor or professor had to go to school longer" is ridiculous. Respect (in my opinion) is earned through accomplishment, not automatically associated with a title.

I couldn't agree more. However I don't think that the use of titles is necessarily a respect thing, it can also be a matter of convention. To use Doctor as an example. When you have passed your doctorate your title can be formally and legaly replaced with Dr if you want it too. So Miss Jones becomes Dr Jones. When talking about Chef (or a myriad of other titles) you would have the choice to use Miss Jones or Chef Jones. I choose to use Miss as there is no convention here in the UK to do otherwise.


Edited by Mattmvb (log)

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However, to claim that an accomplished chef deserves less respect than a doctor or a professor because "the doctor or professor had to go to school longer" is ridiculous. Respect (in my opinion) is earned through accomplishment, not automatically associated with a title.

Totally disagree with this. Put it this way. If I had a chef and a professor in front of me I'd be showing a lot more respect for the professor. A professor is pretty much a doctor at the top of his or her game especially since it is almost the final title you can get in that respect i.e doctor -> associate professor -> professor -> dean. The title chef is the same. Anyone can call themselves a chef especially once qualified. It's not the same with a professor. Chefs have the Bocuse d'or or their third Michelin Star. Professors have the Nobel Peace Prize. Which one is more important? Since we are talking about people at the top of their game...


Edited by roosterchef21 (log)

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I get called Chef all of the time because I am one. Most of the time it is from venders or customers or even old aquaintances, who I am certain cannot remember my name.

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We started calling a new head chef just "Chef" at one restaurant where I worked because his given name was long and hard to pronounce. It kind-of stuck and subsequent chefs all got called Chef. Given the rate of turn-over at that place I think it was also easier than trying to remember who the chef was that week! And trust me, it was not usually out of respect in those cases.


Edited by xxchef (log)

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