What the Heck is an Ice Chef?

Posted in America, Illinois, North America, On the Ground

If you love food, you’re probably familiar with the basic titles in a kitchen: executive chef, line cook, pastry chef, etc. If you really love food, you might even know the difference between an executive chef and a chef de cuisine (kind of like the Chief of Police versus the Deputy of Operations in a police department) or what exactly a garde manger is (it’s the salad station). No matter what, there’s very little chance you’ve ever heard of an ice chef. That’s because you can count the number of restaurants that employ an ice chef on one hand — one finger even.

The Aviary in Chicago is one of the most progressive bars in the country and part of that is due to its groundbreaking ice program. While some bars focus exclusively on the liquid that goes into the glass, The Aviary puts just as much focus on the stuff that keeps that liquid cold. That’s why they posted this ad on Craigslist:

The Aviary seeks a full-time ice chef to join our bar team. The ice chef is responsible for production of ice using Clinebell machines, freezing into molds and maintaining a highly organized ice kitchen. During service, the ice chef focuses on hand carving and chipping ice for our cocktail menu.

If you’re the chosen ice-ster, you’ll get medical, dental, vision, and life benefits along with a whopping $11/hour (that’s just to start, though!), but there’s no word yet on whether or not you have to bring your own gloves to handle the ice.

Photo: Edsel Little

Photo: Edsel Little

The job vacancy comes as a result of Hope Clarke, the previous ice chef at The Aviary, departing for the warmer climes of Houston. While she’ll be pursuing the fancy ice business down in Texas, someone else will be taking over the carving duties in Chicago. Will it be you?

Featured Photo:AttributionShare Alike Some rights reserved by Edsel L

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