Guide to the Kitchen Brigade System
The Culinary Institute of America
The roundsman (tournant) or swing cook works as needed throughout the kitchen.
The cold-foods chef (garde-manger), also known as the pantry chef, is responsible for preparation of cold foods, including salads, cold appetizers, pâtés, and the like. This is considered a separate category of kitchen work.
The butcher (boucher) is responsible for butchering meats, poultry, and, occasionally, fish. The boucher may also be responsible for breading meat and fish items.
The pastry chef (pâtissier) is responsible for baked items, pastries, and desserts. The pastry chef frequently supervises a separate kitchen area or a separate shop in larger operations. This position may be further broken down into the following areas of specialization: confiseur (pre-pares candies, petits fours), boulanger (prepares unsweetened doughs,as for breads and rolls), glacier (prepares frozen and cold desserts),and décorateur (prepares showpieces and special cakes).
The expediter or announcer (aboyeur) accepts orders from the dining room and relays them to the various station chefs. This individual is the last person to see the plate before it leaves the kitchen. In some operations, this may be either the chef or sous chef.
The communard prepares the meal served to staff at some point during the shift (also called the family meal).
The commis, or apprentice, works under a station chef to learn how the station operates and its responsibilities.
Reprinted by permission from The Culinary Institute of America, The Professional Chef, 8th Edition (John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 2006).