September 19th 2018
Introducing Razvan – Our Casual Chef turned Chef Recruiter
by Jess Green Company News, Case Studies
Razvan started with Off to Work as a Chef de partie on a casual contract in 2016. Since finishing his Masters degree, he joined the London office in July as Chef Recruiter for London and the South East.
He and the team are currently in the midst of a huge chef recruitment campaign, but Raz was able to slip away for a few minutes to talk to us about living, working and studying in London, his best memories with Off to Work so far, helpful industry tips, and his number one passion - food!
It began in high school in Romania, where I started watching Master Chef! I didn’t know what to do career-wise, but knew I wanted to complete a chef course. Then I found out about a Culinary Arts degree course in London, and decided to take the leap to move here! I had little experience in food, and it took a while to gain confidence but I eventually started working for Marcus Wareing at a 3 AA Rosette restaurant, which I think was the experience that made me fall in love with this industry.
After my undergraduate degree, I wanted to complete a Masters in Management. It is not an easy course, and I believe you either love it…or hate it. Having a chef background is really helpful, as previous knowledge helps with the complex modules. In my case, I took an Applied Food Science and Product Development module which was very challenging – even with good knowledge and experience in the food industry. However, I would highly recommend it to anyone who is passionate about food and hospitality, but get some chef experience!
Indeed, time flies! The project in Berlin was great - we were there for a week cooking at Cisco Live and it was good fun being there with the whole team. I still remember my time as a coach, helping with Chef recruitment. The first chef assessment I did on my own was quite challenging as I was much younger than the chefs I was assessing. Memorable times!
Absolutely! It helped me to understand the different needs of our clients, depending on their operation and size. Moreover, I got to see the strengths and weaknesses of our team and to understand what we need to put more emphasis on.
I grew up in quite a small town in Transylvania, so it had its limitations. My initial plan was to stay there and start a chef career. However, the plan changed. I wanted to do more than just a 3-month chef course and I wanted to live in a big city where I had the best opportunities. I had not been to London before deciding to go to university there, but I took a risk and it paid off!
I’d say my goal would be to have my own business. It’s quite a cliché, but I’d love to run my own restaurant one day, so I’ll see what the future brings…
Although I love modernist cooking and experimenting all day, trying new techniques and flavour pairings. I also love my comfort food. Pasta Carbonara is one of my favourite meals to cook / eat, but I am also a chickpea lover and I can make a great hummus. I’m also a major chocoholic!
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