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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Interviewer vs Interviewee

My school is amazing at what they do, including drilling realism into their students heads. One of the main aspects of culinary that AI teaches is the art of networking. They never cease to stress how important it is to get to know other people in your industry because networking is how you advance, so to speak.

For a final of mine, I had to interview a chef outside of school, and basically start weaving that networking web. The goal was to interview someone who works in the general type of culinary you wish to enter; for me, it was either a pastry chef at a winery, or a cake artist. I landed an interview at a super cute small bakery in Temecula, called Truly Madly Sweetly. They specialize in cupcakes, but lately have ventured out into the cake and cheesecake world as well.

Truly Madly Sweetly's main cupcake display

I was very nervous about the interview, and I was the one conducting it! I walked in in my full uniform (which was now soaking wet because of the untimely torrential downpour) and almost right away began the interview. I sat down and began to ask Cindy my interview questions and the nervousness was gone.
Cute two person table and chairs
I'm so grateful that she was able to open up and give me sincere and honest advice, rather than making me pry her for answers. I learned a lot, which was the whole point of the project, and I also have started my network. after about a half hour, she answered my last question and let me try one of their cupcakes (which was delicious. I got the gluten-free chocolate cupcake with vanilla frosting). I thanked her and took some pictures, paid for my cupcake and left.

I was very pleased with how the interview went, and with how much I learned. I learned about her journey of advancing to where she is now, even without going to culinary school, about the culinary industry in general, and even about their shop. I'm pretty sure writing my report on my interview with Cindy will be a breeze, and my project will get a good grade.

Moral of the story: NETWORK. Make your face known. Get to know as many people in your industry as you can, and get on their good list. Life is all about connections, and connections are what allow you move forward in life and your career. I'm glad I've begun.

If you're in the area, be sure to stop by Truly Madly Sweetly for a nice little baked good. Their entire menu contains 0 preservatives, 0 artificials, and 0 stabilizers, so you'll be able to enjoy that cupcake just that much more knowing there's nothing fake in it and everything you're eating is 100% real and fresh.

Here are some pictures from my interview:

Cupcake display

Classic French-style menu and ambiance

Little gift shop located in the bake shop