B&I locations hire executive chefs to keep employees satisfied

Following the Facebook craze for free food, other tech companies are following suit and offering inhouse foodservice programs.

Aug. 1—The dazzling array of food options at the Googleplex campus in Mountain View, Calif. — 25 cafes at last count — is the much-cited example of tech world food perks. And you can peruse the menus at Airbnb and Facebook to get a taste of an equally high bar for not just free food, but worldly food that is designed to delight and fuel employees to work better and harder.

The envy-inducing dishes Facebook's culinary team recently served up include hazelnut peach cheesecake and house-smoked buffalo quail with buttermilk blue cheese. Over at Zynga, employees are spoiled with pickles, yogurt, beef jerky, beer, kombucha and bread — all house made. That's just the tip of the spread prepared by executive chef Mathew DuTrumble and team.

J Sider, founder and CEO of BandPage, a music platform startup in San Francisco, says that when people come for an interview he shows them the BandPage food program and introduces them to corporate chef Callie Waldman. "They walk in the office, which is pretty open, and they can see and smell her foods being made," Sider tells The Salt. "Sometimes she'll put out fresh cookies or granola bars."
 

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Ideas and Innovation
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We started a 50-member vegan team in response to students expressing the need for more vegan options. Between our monthly meetings, students are asked to take photos of foods they eat in and out of the dining halls to give us a true picture of the kinds of things they like and the kinds of foods that cause disappointment. This exercise has sparked a lot of conversation and given us more insight into what we could do better.

Ideas and Innovation
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Some of our employees can work four 10-hour days. It’s really helped with balance. We’ve also created a lot of hybrid positions, such as a personal services assistant and foodservice worker role. It allows workers to pick up more shifts and cover both positions.

Ideas and Innovation
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We set up an interactive collaboration with our dietetics department where students worked with our culinary team to test how recipes are imagined and produced. One of the recipes they came up with was a barbecue tempeh sandwich, which they believed was a great option for vegan students across campus. We added the sandwich to our On the Go program and then expanded it to our vegan station on campus due to its success.

Ideas and Innovation
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We have reorganized our salad bars to not only include the traditional DIY salad ingredients, but also several daily entree salads. Our students requested 32-ounce heavy glass salad bowls that have been wildly popular. The big bowls allow students to load up on their favorite salads and customize with additional ingredients from around the servery. We have seen a significant surge in usage that cuts across all groups, including athletes.

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