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For Sacada, learning to work the line while maintaining strict food safety standards proved a challenge. He was surprised at how exacting being a chef can be.
“You had to practice to make sure your over-easy eggs were over-easy, and your over-medium eggs were over-medium,” he said. It’s a skill that has become automatic.
Nick Gisi, who manages the diner for the mission, said Wallace and Sacada have “gotten a really good grasp on how a restaurant runs from a business perspective.”
He added, “They’ve also learned skills such as responsibility, discipline and getting to work on time. That’s really important.”
“Before I got on the line, I was really, really nervous,” Sacada said. “I realized, wow, people are paying for this food. Now it’s gotten to the point where I know it will be good. Now it’s about presentation.”
Last week, Sacada had a nibble at a permanent job. Wallace hopes to finish his apprenticeship and catch on somewhere.
“I’ve got to say my life has been changed so much, and I’m so grateful for everything I’ve gotten from the mission,” Wallace said. “I want to be successful and show people it can be done.”
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