They are the first ones in and the last ones out. You will never hear them complain and they know how to play hard and work even harder. They may never get their own cooking show, but without them, the entire restaurant would come crumbling down.
Who are they?
I’m not talking about the servers, I’m talking about the unsung heroes of the kitchen, the dishwashers.
Behind those swinging kitchen doors is a dish crew that holds the entire operation together.
No, really, they do.
Think of dishwashers as the offensive linemen of the kitchen. They’re strong, quick and friendly off the field (kitchen), but focused when it’s time to get dirty (literally), and they’re always forgotten. Without them, the magic can’t happen. The chef can prepare the most amazing meal in the world, but if they don’t have a dish to serve it on, it’s pointless.
Still not convinced? Imagine this: It’s Saturday night and the dining room is completely full. You’re sipping on our house, 14 Hands Cabernet Sauvignon and you’ve savoring your last couple bites of your salad with (insert favorite M&H house-made dressing). Your server is bringing out “The Ironworks” that you’ve been dying to have all week. Everything seems in order right? Now, imagine there was no dishwasher. There would be no wine glass, no silverware to eat your salad, no ramekin with your salad dressing in it and, most importantly, there would be no entrée. Without a dishwasher, not only are there no clean dinner plates, but there are neither pans nor cooking utensils to even begin preparing the meal. You would just sit at an empty table with only a tablecloth and napkin to keep you company. Most diners don’t realize how a well-oiled dish crew really enhances their meal. It really makes you think, doesn’t it?
Make no mistake; being a dishwasher is both physically and mentally exhausting. Yes, they make sure the plates, glassware and silverware are spotless, but often they do a lot of the thankless tasks, such as taking out the garbage or mopping up any spills that the servers might have caused. It takes a special kind of person to perform the tasks of a dishwasher, so hats off to them.
What most people don’t know is that today’s dishwasher is tomorrow’s chef. Many dishwashers dream of becoming a chef at a restaurant, so becoming a dishwasher is a way to get their foot in the door. As a matter of fact, look no further than right here at Merrill and Houston’s. Both Executive Chef Bobby and Sous Chef Valentin got their starts as dishwashers before working their way to the top. Moral of the story: be the advocate for a hardworking team.
All in all, dishwashers deserve all the high fives and cold sodas in the world. Next time you visit a restaurant or your friendly neighborhood steak joint *cough cough *, make sure to tell your server to extend your compliments to the chef and the guys (and gals) in their shadows.
To all the dishwashers out there, you’re the real MVP.
By Manny Hernandez