What is a kitchen brigade system?

Written by jason chavis
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What is a kitchen brigade system?
Server delivering food from a kitchen using the brigade system (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Glion Institute of Higher Education)

Within the culinary industry, the brigade system provides a method of organisation in the kitchen. Each worker has a specific food preparation or cleaning duty in a specific location. The concept is designed to enable kitchens to run more efficiently and provide better service.


Georges Auguste Escoffier is generally accredited with establishing the brigade system. After serving in the French army, he brought his experience with military hierarchy to the kitchen of the Savoy Hotel in the late 1800s.


The brigade system's function is to provide streamlined operations in the kitchen. When utilised correctly, it prevents chaos from developing in the kitchen as well as forestalls the possible duplication of dishes.


When utilising the brigade system, each person in the kitchen focuses on a single task, which, in theory, ensures the task will be completed efficiently and in a timely manner.


According to the French model, there are dozens of possible positions within the brigade system. Among these are the head chef, a sauté cook, a butcher, a pantry chef and a pastry cook.


All types of restaurants and hotel kitchens are capable of utilising the brigade system. Its structure is capable of being adapted to whatever size staff is available, from large facilities to small operations.

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