Have you ever used a personal chef?

My husband’s 30th birthday is next month and I think that I’m going to hire someone to come to our home and make us a special, romantic meal. The prices I’ve found are $200-$300 for a four course vegan meal. The chef sets the table with our plates and silverware, cooks everything here, serves us, and cleans up. Wine is extra, but I can always buy that on my own.

Has anyone used a personal chef? How was your experience? Did you feel like it was worth the splurge? Any special questions I should ask to make sure I’m getting a good one? Do those prices seem reasonable and do I tip on top of that?

I have used a couple. That price sounds about right, and I would tip as well, since your $300 might be going to the catering company, then trickling down to the employee.

Once they asked a lot of questions about my kitchen and cookware, another came to see for himself (anything they would need that I didn’t have was brought along). Preparation was done in advance for most dishes but not all, and they cleaned up beautifully! It was worth it, no doubt about it.

I would ask around at higher-end cooking stores (like Williams-Sonoma, Home Chef, Sur Le Table, etc), cooking schools, etc. One guy I know who is a chef I actually went to high school with! He was the head of a cooking store’s cooking school.

Good luck and have fun!

The guy I found through googling seems to work for himself, so I think the full $200 goes to him. What would a good tip be? $50?

My brother used to be a personal chef, but I never used him (for that, or anything else).