Chef Katie Pickens has held every role in a restaurant’s back of house during her 20 years in the industry, starting as a dishwasher when she was 16 years old. Still, no time prep-cooking, oyster shucking, sautéing, or number of appearances on Iron Chef America could properly prepare Pickens for her latest task as server at New Jersey’s Medieval Times — a dinner theatre experience that includes four, utensil-free courses in a castle that hosts jousting and falconry.
Pickens is stepping into her medieval costume in this episode of Eater’s new series, How to Make It — where Pickens takes a stab at unique professions in the food world. On an average night, Medieval Times serves about 900 guests, and on the night Pickens is there there’s a crowd of 740, each of them getting their own chicken. “This is not like regular restaurant service obviously,” says Pickens. “There’s a falcon flying around.”