Anthony Bourdain once said that he “loved the sheer weirdness of the kitchen life: the dreamers, the crackpots, the refugees, and the sociopaths with whom I continue to work; the ever-present smells of roasting bones, searing fish, and simmering liquids; the noise and clatter, the hiss and spray, the flames, the smoke, and the steam.” In an industry that is known for grinding you down and expects you to regularly sacrifice weekend nights and holidays off, there must still be something more than the paycheck that keeps you showing up every day. We spoke with industry professionals to find out what they love about "The Line", what got them started and what keeps them going.


"The "love of the game" clause continues to inspire me. I didn’t get into this business to make money, that wasn’t the motivating factor. What motivates me is my love for this business. From putting together the real estate deal straight through to design and build out, and steps of service and finally, welcoming each guest into our home. I borrowed that tagline from Michael Jordan, when he first got drafted and moved to Chicago. He was starting to make his mark as a great basketball player and they started to put limitations on him. Corporate made him stop playing pickup games on the streets of Chicago, so he put a clause in his contract and called it the "love of the game" clause, allowing him to play basketball on any lot or street corner in the United States."

Donald Madia, Owner, and Partner of the One Off Hospitality Group

"I had my “aha moment” when I went to study abroad in France, at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Pâtisserie, a pastry institute in the south of Lyon. I had never seen anything like it; there, pastry is an art form. I saw the potential of how high the craft can be elevated and I fell in love with how artistic and creative pastry could be."


“I love kitchen culture - the shared creative spirit and generous nature of this work. I’m driven by collaboration and feeding people both physically and emotionally."

Vivian Howard, Chef and Student at Chef & The Farmer

"I am driven by wanting to make my parents and mentors, like Grant Achatz, proud. Those people that have invested so much time and energy into me and my career, supporting me when I was working hard to figure out my path, and I want to do right by them."

Greg Baxtrom, Chef and Owner for Olmsted

"I chose this industry because I love food, I love tasting and learning about new things, I love putting a smile on people's faces."

Monica Glass, Corporate Pastry Chef of Constellation Culinary Group

"Love who you love, and do what you do, but you have to love what you do to do what you love" 

Kim Floresca, Co-Executive Chef of [ONE] Restaurant

"I absolutely fell in love with cooking after I opened my own restaurant and figured it all out in the kitchen, I wouldn't trade what I do for anything."

Steven Satterfield, Co-Owner and Executive Chef at Miller Union