December 8, 2023 at 1:57 pm

‘Sometimes the trash takes itself out.’ They Tried To Tell A Chef He Ordered Way Too Many Onions, But Were Told To Mind Their Business

by Trisha Leigh

Source: Reddit/AITA/iStock

Anyone who has ever worked in food service can tell you there is a definite divide between the front and back-of-house employees. They generally stay out of each other’s way when they can, and grudgingly work together when they can’t.

OP worked in a busy restaurant. He was in charge of ordering for the front-of-house and the bar, while the head chef put in the kitchen orders.

I used to manage a high volume single location restaurant in the bay area. I was assistant manager there, front of house.

We had a chef at the time who was extremely hard-headed, even by chef standards. He made mistakes all the time but always had an excuse and never wanted any criticism.

I was in charge of ordering for the front of house and bar, and he was in charge of ordering for the kitchen.

We ordered a lot of things from the same supplier so we could see each other’s items in the order before it got finalized.

When OP was going over an order the day before it was submitted, he noticed a large order for an ingredient that they generally don’t carry.

One day, I’m going through the order to see if I missed any of what I needed. I noticed there’s 20 cases of red onions (we don’t carry red onions, but frequently order small quantity of things for private events with specific menu items).

I assume he meant 20 red onions, by the each.

Assuming the chef made a mistake, he called to check. Before he could even explain the reason he was calling, the chef told him to mind his business and stop bothering him on his day off.

So I called him up to clarify before changing it.

Me: “hey good evening, I think you added too much onions to the order, it should be-”

Chef: “why are you telling me what I need, you don’t know what I need, I know what I need, leave it alone and don’t call me on my day off”


OP said ok and let the order go through. The chef returned two days later to find an entire pile of onions they weren’t going to use.

He’s off Sunday and Monday, this is Sunday.

I leave it alone, and the order auto submits for next day delivery. Since deliveries come in Monday morning, the person who signs for it is usually a prep cook, not anyone in a decision making role.

So I know that the 20 cases will very likely be accepted, since the kitchen staff knows not to bother the chef on his days off.

I roll in around 1pm to close, and there’s 20 cases of onions just packed anywhere there’s room. Each case, for context, is about 2′ by 1′ by 1′. It’s ridiculous.

I say nothing, and continue running the shift.

My GM was angry when he finds out we have 20 cases of an ingredient we don’t carry, when in fact my intuition was correct and we needed about 20 onions for a private event later that week.

Everything worked out ok in the end.

Chef never said a word about it to me, but he’s not chef there anymore which is for the best.

I bet there are some food service folks on Reddit who identify with this one!

The top comment compares the chef to Shrek.

Source: Reddit/AITA

While this person thinks a good chef would have taken those onions and made soup.

Source: Reddit/AITA

Also, you need a lot of them for that.

Source: Reddit/AITA

But everyone loves it when the trash takes itself to the curb.

Source: Reddit/AITA

And yeah, everyone has met that chef.

Source: Reddit/AITA

As a former restaurant worker, I get it.

OP responded the only way he could have.