There are caterers for all sorts of occasions, but the demands placed on a charter chef may be among the toughest. Charter chefs work on small charter boats to cook meals for the passengers and crew. It sounds like a dream gig. Just you, the kitchen, and a small group of people to cook for every night. But it is no picnic. The turnover rate is very high.
Many charter chefs work for months at a time while the ship makes its way from port to port until it makes its way back home. The galley (kitchen) is often very tiny and has limited equipment. In some cases the chef may be working entirely on their own. Another problem for many chefs is that they are not in charge of the kitchen nearly as much as they would be in a traditional restaurant.
Charter chefs have to come up with varied menus using limited ingredients that can please the taste buds and dietary restrictions of the passengers and crew. This can be a real challenge on a long trip where shopping opportunities are limited. In addition, charter chefs also have to help with other duties on a ship such as assisting with docking procedures and washing the ship.
Still, if you're looking for an extreme cooking challenge and an opportunity to improvise your menus every night, you may want to consider looking for a charter chef gig. Brush up on your cooking skills, get a set of good knives, and start applying for the upcoming west coast cruise season!