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ALAN NEGRETE

Chef / Baker

Early on I have always been around the restaurant and bakery worlds. My dad had a restaurant when I was growing up… as a Latino teenager I fought often with my dad not to work in the family restaurant... Ugh.

Well that never went well. As time moves on, I found myself working in so many fast food joints and not intending to do anything else except make a buck, I always found work. Many of the owners would always ask me how much would I work for, I told them I will work 1 day free and you pay me what you think. I put my money where my mouth was.. This strategy always paid off.

Soon after High School I was working in a warehouse, in a go nowhere job. I ended up leaving and went back to working at restaurants. For some odd reason I always excelled in the food industry, I found that restaurant/bakery owners trusted me and I would open and close the locations.. They counted on me… many times back in the day, they knew I would go out and party but I was going to be at work. Many times after sleeping in the parking lot in my car after going out on the town and not worth a darn in the morning for many reasons, but I was there at work and I always kept the crew going.

I called these days my Culinary Mercenary Days.

I guess I was doing things well, as a couple of French Chef’s I worked for coerced me in filling out a scholarship application for the French Culinary Institute in New York, with a 90 day internship program at the end of my culinary education program.

To my surprise I won the scholarship and 18 months later I found myself in Paris France working.

I was 1 of 30 interns, I barely made it, I had $500.00 dollars to last me for 3 months. Wow...

I pulled as many shifts as possible and finally I was noticed by the owner.

I was the only one offered a job out of the 30 interns.

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