Restaurant kitchens can be hot, hectic and downright hellish! Chef clogs can't cure everything or promise a smooth shift, but these comfort clogs are guaranteed to provide some relief from standing all day. Professional chefs that have made the switch to chef clogs from more traditional footwear provide some of the best unsolicited testimony on the change in attitude and physical comfort brought about buying a chef clog.
Clogs have a long history that date back to the Dutch and their famous solid wood clogs. Over the centuries, the sole has barely changed, but the upper is now generally leather. These shoes have been embraced by many occupations that require standing for long periods of time: factory workers, nurses, doctors, and, of course - chefs! During busy times, it is not uncommon for a chef to work a full 8, 10 or even 12 hours with little chance to sit down or take a break. Chef clogs can provide the support needed to keep any chef cooking in comfort for hours.
The sky is the limit when it comes to the styles and colors available in chef clogs. There are only a few types that aren't a wise choice for kitchens. Patent leather clogs may be stylish, but will probably be scuffed beyond recognition in the sea of pots, pans, carts, servers, busboys and swinging doors. A smooth leather or smooth synthetic material will be easiest to wipe clean and maintain. Spills will happen and fabric can quickly stain. Likewise, embossed shoes like crocodile clogs have a neat pattern, but the creases and crevices are just likely to attract grease and dirt that won't wipe off easily. Any of the decorated shoes with straps, buckles or other decorations are more likely to stay dirty in a kitchen, too.
Many restaurant and uniform supply stores carry chef clogs but the options may be limited to just a few designs or colors. Fortunately, today's chef can turn to the internet and shop for comfort clogs in any number of places. There are many manufacturers that have been turning out chef clogs for decades. Some of the best places to look for some professional chef clogs include many companies that are very well known.
Dankso Chef Clogs
Dansko is practically synonymous with the clog. This company produces a line of restaurant shoes that many businesses order for both the front line and kitchen staff. Black is a popular color and this Dansko Professional Line can be purchased for both men and women in either closed back or open back. A key feature is Dansko's use of a slip resistant sole. This is critical in restaurants where cooking oils, grease and even cleaning liquids can make for a hazardous workplace. The Dansko line is how many people judge other clogs. It is difficult to find a more comfortable shoe let alone comfort clog than those produced by this company.
Birkenstock Chef Clogs
The Birkenstock Company is widely know for its line of sandals, but in recent years they have begun a Professional Series of their own. Many of their clogs are released under the Birki line. Some of these clogs boast the same features of Dansko: slip resistant soles, closed back leather uppers and thick heel. They also have maintained the feature they are best known for in some chef clogs - the cork insole. The insole will mold to a chef's foot and some kitchen workers swear by the Birki line.
L.L. Bean Chef Clogs
The company best known for its rugged outdoors clothing and shoes has ventured into providing restaurant quality clogs, too. The L.L. Bean Comfort Clog in leather is, again, similar to the Dansko. The L.L. Bean company is always striving to innovate and improve its products and this leather clog has a new rubber sole, improved polyurethane arch support and redesigned upper for more comfort in the heel area. They have also switched to half-size increments for a better fit, too. The quality of L.L. Bean is well known and their chef clog is a popular choice.
Sanita Chef Clogs
Sanita is well known for their professional nursing clogs. They have also embraced those workers in food services with a line of comfort clogs. Ranging form open back to close back, the Sanita clog comes in a wide variety of colors and designs. Sanita makes some of the most colorful and interesting clogs on the market. Many women opt for Sanita clogs. The top-of-the-line clog from them may run as high as $150, but many professionals deem the higher price tage justified by the boutique feel of the shoes.
Hammacher Schlemmer Chef Clogs
Definitely not a household name to many people, the Hammacher Schlemmer company has existed for over 150 years. The Professional Chef's Clog that is made by them is thoughtfully designed for the true kitchen professional. The standard raised heelbed is supplemented by an anatomically correct arch support. The insole is flexible and removable and has a shock absorbing heel cup to reduce leg pain. The inserts are also perforated for extra ventilation. The upper is polyurethane and easily cleaned with a damp cloth. The line of clogs including the Professional Clog that Hammacher Schlemmer carries are handmade in Sweden by Troentorps Toffelfabrik i Bastad AB.
These are just a few of the companies that produce professional chef clogs. The cost for most of the models featured by these companies range from a low of $50 to a top cost around $120 to $150. There are discount clogs and cheap clogs offered during sales, too, but these comfortable kitchen clogs are a bargain even at the maximum price because of their durability. Clogs are virtually indestructible! The hot confines of a kitchen can create a stressful work environment that can cause tempers to flare. Foot pain and discomfort do not help this. A quality pair of chef clogs may provide a kinder workspace for everyone. A pair of basic black leather clogs also works well with just a pair of jeans and it is easy for these working professionals to step out for the evening - if they still have any energy left!