One of the most revelatory things I learned while working as a line cook was that restaurant food is, essentially, very good reheated leftovers. Sure, proteins are seared on the spot and crème brûlée is torched to order, but everything else—risotto, pasta, green beans, soups—are made hours and days in advance. As soon as an order is fired (meaning the server tells the kitchen staff to start preparing the salads and steak tartare for table 11), everything is reheated in skillets and sizzler platters in the oven. What does this have to do with potatoes? Right. Those are prepared way in advance too.
Most mornings on the job, I was tasked with peeling pounds and pounds of russets for creamy potatoes. I would then cut the spuds with the largest restaurant-provided chef’s knife I could find and transfer them to a 22-quart container, cover them in water, and store the incredibly heavy container in the refrigerator. At that point, they would hang out, uncovered, for a few days until we were running low on mashed potatoes or hand cut French fries and it was time to make more.