You know the story of Newton sitting under an apple tree?
An apple falls and hits him on the head and suddenly he thinks up the Universal Law of Gravitation.
That happens to chefs, too, without eating the apple!
“I was drinking a cup of coffee at Louie’s, poring over French cookbooks, trying to figure out that night’s specials, when I fell into a kind of trance,” said Van Aken. Looking out over the water he spotted a fishing boat and began to daydream about where they were going and what they were going to catch and eat.
He spent time eating at local restaurants: “I decided that I had to drill down on these joints and distill and transpose this food so that it could be served at a white tablecloth restaurant — without apology.”
So, spend a little time daydreaming, then work very hard to achieve your dreams. Who knows? You just might have a chance at becoming as successful as Norman.
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(Image of Norman Van Aken by Todd Coleman for Saveur)