Please upgrade your browser for the best Refinery29 experience. Read more.
We all have to start somewhere. For most of us, our first jobs entailed folding sweaters or repeating some form of the phrase, "Do you want fries with that?" But, for the celebrity chefs we know and love, there seems to be one common denominator in their humble workforce beginnings: hotels.
Yep, many star chefs started working their ways up the culinary ladder while deep in the back-of-house kitchens of some of the best hotels in the world. Savvy hoteliers have always been quick to hire top students right out of culinary school, capitalizing on their eager spirits and freshly gleaned skills. So, it only makes sense that some of our favorites began their forays into food at such hospitable locations.
Imagine Giada De Laurentiis prepping the pasta for your room-service order, or Ming Tsai perfecting his knife skills on vegetable cuts for your French stew in the lobby bar. It's not that these hotels made these culinary kings and queens famous — but it's pretty clear they were a high-caliber stepping stone for some of the best chefs of our century.
From the hotel where Stephanie Izard worked before making it big on Bravo’s Top Chef to the family-run inn and restaurant that inspired Jamie Oliver’s love of food, the following properties are still fully prepped (and plated) for inspiration. Ahead, take a peek inside their gastronomic gates.
Photo: Courtesy of Mark Alpert.