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Runaway chefs

Recently Spice Business has been receiving several calls from restau- rateurs complaining that chefs were leaving their jobs without giving any notice. Often they are being lured away by other restaurants promising higher wages, causing damage, albeit tem- porary, to the restaurant and diners alike.

If it is stipulated in the appointment letter that one month (or whatever) notice will be required for any side to quit, then the situation should not arise. During the notice period the employer can fi nd a replacement and the departing employee can hand over

all his duties to the incoming member of staff.

Restaurateurs put in immense time, effort and money to recruit chefs – often traveling to Bangladesh or India, selecting the chef, arranging his work permit and air ticket, training them here – only to fi nd one morning he has vanished! While he can claim damages from the chef for all the expenses, the damage is often done.

The restaurateurs who lure them away without the proper notice period are guilty as well, and both these res-

taurateurs and the chefs should be named and shamed. If any restaura- teur wishes to report any such incident he can contact Spice Business by email or phone. There are also cases where chefs who leave famous restaurants to join smaller restaurants promising higher wages. These restaurants go on to advertise that he worked in the famous restaurant in the expecta- tion that the famous name will lure diners. However these people should be aware that the famous restaurant may well take action for misusing the name through the courts.

Curry Capital competition is back

The National Curry Capital competition is to be relaunched this year as part of National Curry Week, sponsored by Cobra Beer. Leicester won the title of Curry Capital of Britain in 2007 and technically continues to hold it as the event has not taken place since, due to a change of sponsor.

The rules for the event, which involve the restaurants in each city as well as the coun- cil or marketing body, have changed a little from previous years, but one major devel- opment is that the four areas of London will no longer be invited to compete.

“Historically, London has some wonder- ful Asian restaurants,” explains organiser Peter Grove “and we could easily see them winning year after year. So instead, we are opening entry to the London councils with concentrations of ethnic restaurants such as Ealing, Southall, Tower Hamlets and Tooting.” The organisers feel that, by including Curry Capital of Britain under the umbrella of National Curry Week, now in its 13th year, it will focus the public’s attention even more and help raise funds for The Curry Tree Charitable Fund, as well as further cel- ebrate Britain’s favourite cuisine. National Curry Week runs from 21-27 November and the winner of Curry Capital of the Year 2010 will be announced on 8th December. Aside from Leicester past win- ners have included London West, Glasgow, Bradford and Birmingham.

Spice Business Magazine 25 August | September 2010

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