- Behind the low boy, cater wrapped and tucked away
- Inside the soup bowls that are stacked in the back of the shelves
- Inside sixth pans, cater-wrapped and placed upside down amongst rows of other containers of dry products
- Hidden in the electric room
- Tucked away in a container and stored inside the back of the freezer
- Kept in knife bags for safe keeping for emergencies
- Meticulously and inconspicuously tucked inside to-go containers, preferably on the lower ends
- Behind the flour bins
- In the dry storage stacked on top of boxes on top of the shelf
If you search hard enough, these are places where the hidden kitchen towels can be found.
Every week, there is a delivery of towels and aprons to the restaurant. On busier weeks, the set amount of these precious commodities can run out. More staff means more towels being used. Longer hours mean more of wearing out towels and needing new ones, using up more towels.
We use dry towels to handle hot items and wet/sanitized towels to wipe down. Without towels, it almost feels like we’re missing a limb. There’s a splatter of sauce that dripped over the edges of your hotel pans as you were quickly ladling it over the orders during a rush….the squeeze bottle is all oily from the other guy’s greasy butter fingers……there’s a smidge of sauce on the rim of the plate of an order….you need to wipe down the cutting board after chopping away at stuff before you start chopping away at something else…..BUT YOU’RE NOT ARMED WITH A SANITIZED TOWEL! FML
On good days, you’re glad you tucked away a secret stash for such emergencies. On the the FML days, you get to your secret stash only to find that someone else had already gotten to it. And it’s FML and F them, whoever took it. Things are constantly organized, moved around, deep cleaned…..THERE.IS.NO.LONG.TERM.SAFE.PLACE.
The towel hogs ruin it for everyone. I usually get a stash (and occasionally tuck away only two or three for emergencies) for my station. And that’s usually shared by everyone at the station. If I was the only one using the stash, I can probably last all week. But some people go through towels like they were growing on trees. I come in the next day or the day after and the entire stash is gone. FML!
Some restaurants will lock up the towels and staff have to go through management to obtain them each time. I have probably hidden towels in most of the places listed above, but never in my knife bag. I mean, I leave with my knife bag. It’d be like leaving away with restaurant property. But I have seen a lot of people doing that at some places.
On days when there are no towels in the house, linens have been used. Like…linen napkins that diners use. I use the linen to grab hot items, wipe down messes……I mean, heck, what else can we do?
Last week, when we were out of aprons, I used the linen napkins as aprons lol. I tied the ends with plastic wrap pulled and stretched to tie together on the ends, like the strings of an apron. I feel naked without an apron. I had to improvise.