There is a drought of cooks in this town.” – Steven Goff, Exec. Chef, King James Public House.
Steven and I had a very interesting conversation yesterday, during which he said that the food scene in this town is growing so fast that it’s nearly impossible to find qualified cooks to work in the kitchens of the existing restaurants, while in the meantime, new venues are opening constantly.
It seems like Asheville is suddenly a great place to come if you need a job. Whoa. I remember when the joke was that all the hippies moved here because they heard there was no work.
Tell your experienced cook friends from out of town and out of state that this could be a good town for them.
And more from Goff in the comments reflects just how tough it is to make a go of it in the restaurant business in Asheville:
And yes I have heard about the west coast cities that have been raising the bar to 18$ however it costs a lot more to live in those cities and I’m sure the menu prices now reflect. Cost has to get eaten somewhere and if you know anything about restaurants even a very successful one only has a 2-5% profit which doesn’t leave room for eating new costs. A new restaurant like mine just gets by even when it’s busy and all the owners are working 16 hour days.
So, what do you know about the shortage of kitchen staff in Asheville? And what’s the solution?