Head Chef

Closing date: 20240216
Reference number: SW-015706
  • Salary: £37,000
  • Job Type: Full-time
  • Employer: Wahaca
Register your interest

Wahaca is hiring a Head Chef to join their team. To apply, please email a CV and cover letter explaining how you meet the role specification to 

A head chef will:  

  • Maintain highest standards of food quality every time 
  • Be fully accountable for all aspects of running your kitchen 
  • Ensure shifts are well organised to ensure a WOW guest experience 
  • Lead and inspire your team to exceed expectations 


  • Think Positively, look for opportunities and have a can-do attitude.  
  • Be fully knowledgeable on all menu specifications, ensuring that standards of food quality are at the highest level and  dish specifications are always adhered to. 
  • Be accountable for the recruitment and training of your team, ensuring that all new starters attend the ‘Welcome to  the Famliee’ induction and all onboarding and right to work checks have been completed.  
  • Spot talent within your team ensuring quarterly reviews and annual appraisals are held.  
  • learning needs identified and PDPs are in place to aid great succession in your kitchen. 
  • Delegate and set clear goals to your team.  
  • Work closely with your Sous Chef and Kitchen Supervisor to ensure they are fully aware of their responsibilities to aid  you in the running of a successful kitchen. 
  • Support the General Manager by managing team in your kitchen and the restaurant as a whole.
  • To manage rotas, holidays and labour costs according to budgets.  
  • Obtain knowledge in level 3 food hygiene and food safety.  
  • Ensuring that all staff have completed FLOW E-learning within the given time frames resulting in 100% completion for  all your team and making use of all the Wahaca training materials available.  
  • Monitor QSR timings and ensure the 20-minute timings are not exceeded on more than one consecutive shift.
  • Working with your GM to be aware of all commercial aspects in order to exceed your restaurant KPIs. Account for food stock on weekly basis ensuring correct margins are achieved and that theoretical cost and actual cost  difference is less than 1%. 
  • Effectively and promptly report any supplier issues/ shortages/ change in delivery times/ product changes/ price changes to  your GM and Area Chef. 
  • Have fun! Engage your teams, set targets, reward hard work and don’t be afraid to give praise!
  • Providing First Aid cover to guests, colleagues and suppliers when appropriate.  
  • Constantly communicate with your team, follow through and action any issues that affect the restaurant including  maintenance, accidents, complaints and day to day operational information, ensuring that you feedback to the General  Manager and record any issues in daily handover email. 
  • Show pride in everything you do, ensuring, spot checks are in place and walk arounds are completed daily. Communicating  any differences to your chef and manager on duty. 
  • Together with your General Manager, work together to rectify any short falls or failings identified by our external food safety  partners / auditors, in house audits or routine visits.  
  • Reporting any faulty equipment or any other matters that could affect the health and safety of you, or others, to the Area  Chef and General Manager as soon as possible. 
  • Complete an internal audit with your Area Chef once per quarter as a minimum. 
  • Attend and participate in monthly Area Meetings and ensure all relevant information is shared with your team. 



  • Sales & EBITDA ahead of budget 
  • GP variances within agreed targets 
  • Food stock holding at agreed levels 
  • Achieve labour flex target weekly 
  • Mystery Diner results greater than 90% 
  • Food Safety Audit pass 
  • EHO 5 Star 
  • Review actions every period against last employee engagement survey action plan  
  • Team Turnover below 70% 
  • Support the 70% Internal promotion rate of all salaried managers

Perks of being Head Chef at Wahaca:
• Inspirational trip for General Managers and Head Chefs to Mexico with our founders
• Quarterly bonus scheme
• 4 weeks paid off after 5 years with us
• Free nutritious food every day
• 70% off food, 50% off drinks when you dine with us plus 3 friends! (at all Wahaca and DF
Tacos every day of week)
• Annual company ‘Fiestaval'(we close all our restaurants for a day full of funfair rides, music,
food, drinks and more to celebrate our entire team)! plus lots of socials with your team
• Earn up to £1000 referral bonus
• £100 off your bill after 3 months working with us to show off your workplace to family and
• Food Safety Level 3 and Mental Health training provided
• And much more…

Wahaca is the leading Mexican restaurant in the UK and winners of R200 Sustainability Award and
Deliveroo’s Best Mexican Restaurant! We are deeply values driven and People obsessed, our teams
are at the core of everything we do.

Closing date: 16/02/2024

If you are a Southwark resident and would like help in applying for this job, or one that suits you, please register your interest below.

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