Get Paid to Eat with Culinary Dream Jobs

image via Jenni Brown Writes


Nice Work if You Can Get It.

Who hasn’t fantasized about a dream job? I’m talking about the one where you get a nice paycheck to do something that doesn’t even feel like work—a semi-mythical gig like playing video games all day as a beta tester, or quality control taster for a brewery. For a food lover, the fantasy might be restaurant reviewer for the Parisian Michelin Guides or tasting new ice cream flavors at the Häagen-Dazs factory.

Marketers have been capitalizing on the appeal of job contests, which resonate powerfully with the public in a down economy, the most visible being the ubiquitous, integrated media ‘search’ by Dos Equis beer for an assistant to the Most Interesting Man in the World (stay thirsty my friends’). The contests often attract news media coverage along with a flood of entries, garnering free publicity for the sponsoring companies. It’s a win-win; we should expect to see more.

There’s been a recent spate of dream-job contests in the food and beverage world.

  • Ben & Jerry’s recruited its newest ‘flavor guru’ with a press release touting The Sweetest Job in the Nation, During a Sour Economy, with the promise of taste testings and three free pints of ice cream per day– all in a day’s work.
  • On St. Patrick’s Day, Bushmill’s launched a search for an intern to assist its master distiller for an all-expenses-paid month on the coast of Northern Ireland.
  • Murphy-Goode Winery went to the source when it tweeted and posted its ‘Really Goode Job’ contest online. Angling for a foothold in social media marketing, the winery  dangled the cushy position of Wine Country Lifestyle Correspondent—a 6 month junket of wining and dining, luxe accommodations, and a fat paycheck in exchange for some Facebook, YouTube, and blog posting. Entrants were encouraged to showcase their own social media skills in lieu of a résumé.

Some of the current job openings include:

  • The Sip of Success internship with the Tea Council of the USA: College students and recent graduates are encouraged to submit an original, creative video touting the health benefits of tea. The winner will spend next spring and summer learning the tea business in India, Kenya, and Sri Lanka, followed by an internship in New York.  Complete rules can be found on the Tea Council’s website.
  • Join the Nestlé Sensory Panel: Yes, it’s what you think— chocolate taster. It’s about four hours a week of tasting, and for the right palate, the U.K. division is willing to ship the chocolate and take feedback over the phone. It’s not a paid gig, but what do you expect? Apply online at Nestlé Careers.
  • Belvedere Vodka is holding a Facebook election to choose a Global Brand Ambassador. It’s a one year, $100,000 contract to travel the world seeking out and creating cocktail concoctions. Candidates need to post a video to the Belvedere Global Ambassador Facebook page that demonstrates their love of vodka.
  • Have you dreamed of having your own television cooking show? The Food Network is currently casting for the 2011 season of The Next Food Network Star. They are holding open casting calls around the country, or you can submit a three minute video showing off your kitchen chops and sparkling personality– you do need plenty of both for the gig. You’ll find information and a downloadable application on their website.

Maybe you’re not quite ready to take the plunge…

Or you’re not liking the odds of winning a contest. You can explore your dream career without competition or commitment with Vocation Vacations. They can match you with a variety of hands-on culinary experiences: a class, an internship, or a mentor in your field of interest. Vocation Vacations can match you with a restaurant critic, sommelier, vineyard owner, chef, cupcake maker, cheese importer, brew master, restaurant publicist— if they don’t currently have the opportunity you’re looking for, they can probably find it for you.

You can live the dream.

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8 Responses to Get Paid to Eat with Culinary Dream Jobs

  1. Jill says:

    Love this article! Thank you so much for the Vocations Vacation link. :0)

  2. Dana says:

    Love this post! Although I’ve learned the hard way that some jobs that sound like “dream jobs” are anything but!

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  4. Rick says:

    I need a new career.

  5. Monet says:

    What a great picture! I love it. And I would love to have a job that would marry my passion for food with my passion for writing…Bon Appetit Editor perhaps?

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  7. Great article, as always 🙂 I think I’ll try the vodka/cocktail job, lol

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