Frequently Asked Questions
What is a personal chef?
A personal chef is a business owner and serves numerous clients–generally one per day–providing multiple meals that are custom-designed for the client’s particular tastes, dietary and food allergy requirements. The meals are packaged and stored according to the client’s needs to be enjoyed at their leisure.
Do you cook in my kitchen?
Yes. All meals are prepared and packaged in the safety of your home. Don't worry about the size of your kitchen or if you have the proper equipment. I work with what you have and bring my own equipment if necessary.
Why can’t you just cook everything at your home and deliver to me?
Health department and zoning laws prohibit it. If I were to cook your meals in a licensed, health department approved commercial kitchen then I would have to pass on the rental charge of the kitchen to you. Cooking everything in your home as opposed to offsite and delivering it provides you with the freshest, safest food possible. I will make each service date as low key and as unobtrusive as possible.
How long will you be here?
I will be cooking several different entrées and side dishes from scratch, so it will take four to eight hours depending on entrée selection. However, I will be willing to work with your schedule or situation, and make arrangements in advance, so that the cooking date fits into your schedule.
Do I have to be home when you come to cook?
No, you do not have to be home on the selected cook date. Arrangements can be made at the assessment to determine how I can gain access to your house.
Do I heat the food?
Yes, you will heat all food at your leisure. Complete heating instructions are provided for each meal to insure proper preparation.
How long will the food last and how often will we need your service?
That depends on the service that is provided. The food can be stored in the freezer for up to 90 days, however 30 days is recommended for the best taste. It will also depend on how many nights you eat at home and the number of entrees and servings ordered. Whether it’s weekly, biweekly, monthly or as-needed, we’ll make sure it works best for you and supports your lifestyle without putting pressure on you. Service dates are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. Occasional service and gift certificate purchases are scheduled around regular clients.
How is the food stored?
The meals can be packaged family style, or in single or double portions depending on your needs. Packaging can be either disposable or reusable and that will be decided at your initial consultation. All packages will include complete directions for reheating and serving.
Can you provide meals according to my diet?
Yes. During the initial assessment, we’ll discuss your dietary needs and preferences and a custom menu will be provided.
Do I pay in advance of the cook date?
Yes. It is customary to pay in advance of each cook date. A check can be left for the next cook date on the day of service.
What about the groceries?
I shop for food as if I were shopping for my own family the day of your cook date. The groceries are brought to your house with the perishables kept cold until they are stored in your refrigerator to be used in the food preparation.
The cost seems to be about what I would spend in a restaurant, why is that?
Although our fees are expressed as “per entree” or “per serving,” they actually represent all of the components that make up a professional chef service. This fee includes, the assessment, a personalized menu based on that assessment, complete grocery shopping, preparation of each meal, packaging and labeling of all meals, heating instructions, and cleaning up after. Each meal is customized based on the dietary needs and wants of the client, which typically does not happen at a restaurant. Now you can have a beautiful entree that has been prepared specifically for your palate and requirements, and eat it in the comfort of your own home without having to drive anywhere. You’ll know the kitchen is clean and sanitary and that your meal contains only fresh ingredients.
How do I pay for the service and am I locked in for a period of time?
A check for my service in addition to the grocery deposit will be required in advance of the cooking date. Payment is required in advance because I am reserving an entire day for you. Because our relationship is based on mutual trust, please have a check ready for me when I arrive on each subsequent cooking date. There is no contract and you are not locked in for any period of time; our mutual arrangement can be terminated by either of us at any time with advance notice. I do, however, have a service agreement that outlines the terms of service along with our respective roles so that the service runs smoothly.
How does the Canine Cuisine work?
It works just like feeding people! Your dog(s) will go through an initial assessment and then we decide together which foods are the most appropriate. Just like people, each dog has their own needs and requirements in order to maintain a balanced diet. Food can either be stored in bulk, leaving the meal divisions up to the client or can be stored in individually weighed containers.
Can I hire you to cook for only one person?
Absolutely! Meal plans can be designed for a single person, a single child or pets alone. One persons day to day life is different from the next. For that reason I have single clientele as well as whole families. I even have monthly visits for dogs alone. Whatever works for you is my main goal.