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Wolfgang Puck

Wolfgang Puck

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Wolfgang Johannes Puck is an Austrian-American celebrity chef
Celebrity chef
A celebrity chef is a kitchen chef who has become famous and well known. Today celebrity chefs often become celebrities by presenting cookery advice and demonstrations via mass media, especially television. Historically, celebrity chefs have included Antoine Carême and Martino da Como.-External...

, restaurateur
Restaurant
A restaurant is an establishment which prepares and serves food and drink to customers in return for money. Meals are generally served and eaten on premises, but many restaurants also offer take-out and food delivery services...

, businessman and occasional actor. Wolfgang Puck restaurants, catering services, cookbooks and licensed products are run by Wolfgang Puck Companies, with three divisions. He has been titled as "The Greatest Chef In The World".

Life and career


He was born to Maria Worth and a butcher
Butcher
A butcher is a person who may slaughter animals, dress their flesh, sell their meat or any combination of these three tasks. They may prepare standard cuts of meat, poultry, fish and shellfish for sale in retail or wholesale food establishments...

, who abandoned her before their child's birth. In 1956, Maria married Josef Puck, who adopted
Adoption
Adoption is a process whereby a person assumes the parenting for another and, in so doing, permanently transfers all rights and responsibilities from the original parent or parents...

 Puck. The marriage produced another son and two daughters.

Puck learned cooking from his mother, who sometimes worked as a pastry chef
Pastry chef
A pastry chef or pâtissier is a station chef in a professional kitchen, skilled in the making of pastries, desserts, breads and other baked goods...

. He trained as an apprentice
Apprenticeship
Apprenticeship is a system of training a new generation of practitioners of a skill. Apprentices or protégés build their careers from apprenticeships...

 under Raymond Thuilier at L'Oustau de Baumanière in Les Baux-de-Provence, at Hotel de Paris in Monaco
Monaco
Monaco , officially the Principality of Monaco , is a sovereign city state on the French Riviera. It is bordered on three sides by its neighbour, France, and its centre is about from Italy. Its area is with a population of 35,986 as of 2011 and is the most densely populated country in the...

, and at Maxim's Paris
Maxim's Paris
Maxim's is the name of a restaurant in Paris, France, located at No. 3 of the rue Royale. It is known for its art nouveau interior decor.-History:...

 before moving to the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 in 1973 at age 25. After two years at La Tour in Indianapolis
Indianapolis
Indianapolis is the capital of the U.S. state of Indiana, and the county seat of Marion County, Indiana. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city's population is 839,489. It is by far Indiana's largest city and, as of the 2010 U.S...

, Puck moved to Los Angeles
Los Ángeles
Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

 to become chef and part owner at Ma Maison restaurant.

Following the 1981 publication of his first cookbook
Cookbook
A cookbook is a kitchen reference that typically contains a collection of recipes. Modern versions may also include colorful illustrations and advice on purchasing quality ingredients or making substitutions...

, Modern French Cooking for the American Kitchen based on his Ma Maison recipes, Puck opened the restaurant Spago on the Sunset Strip
Sunset Strip
The Sunset Strip is the name given to the mile-and-a-half stretch of Sunset Boulevard that passes through West Hollywood, California. It extends from West Hollywood's eastern border with Hollywood at Harper Avenue, to its western border with Beverly Hills at Sierra Drive...

 in 1982. Fifteen years later, in 1997, Puck opened the award-winning Spago in Beverly Hills, which has been recognized as one of the Top 40 Restaurants in the U.S. since 2004. His success enabled him to launch the Wolfgang Puck Companies which includes the Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group, Wolfgang Puck Worldwide, Inc. and Wolfgang Puck Catering. The Wolfgang Puck Companies encompasses over 20 fine dining restaurants, premium catering
Catering
Catering is the business of providing foodservice at a remote site or a site such as a hotel, public house , or other location.-Mobile catering:A mobile caterer serves food directly from a vehicle or cart that is designed for the purpose...

 services, more than 80 Wolfgang Puck Express operations, and kitchen and food merchandise, including cookbooks and canned foods. He is the official caterer for the Academy Awards Governors Ball, and has parlayed his celebrity into acting; his credits include Frasier
Frasier
Frasier is an American sitcom that was broadcast on NBC for eleven seasons, from September 16, 1993, to May 13, 2004. The program was created and produced by David Angell, Peter Casey, and David Lee in association with Grammnet and Paramount Network Television.A spin-off of Cheers, Frasier stars...

, a recurring role as himself on Las Vegas
Las Vegas (TV series)
Las Vegas was an American television series broadcast by NBC from September 22, 2003 to February 15, 2008. The show focuses on a team of people working at the ficticional Montecito Resort & Casino dealing with issues that arise within the working environment, ranging from valet parking and...

and a cameo appearance on The Weather Man
The Weather Man
The Weather Man is a 2005 American comedy-drama film, directed by Gore Verbinski. Written by Steve Conrad, it stars Nicolas Cage, Michael Caine and Hope Davis and tells the story of a weatherman in the midst of a mid-life crisis....

. He also appeared as himself on Iron Chef America: Battle of the Masters
Iron Chef America
Iron Chef America: The Series is an American cooking show based on Fuji Television's Iron Chef, and is the second American adaptation of the series, following the failed Iron Chef USA. The show is produced by Food Network, which also carried a dubbed version of the original Iron Chef. Like the...

, as well as Cooking Class with Wolfgang Puck on The Food Network, and in an American Idol
American Idol
American Idol, titled American Idol: The Search for a Superstar for the first season, is a reality television singing competition created by Simon Fuller and produced by FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment...

season finale episode where he introduced unusual foods to Kellie Pickler
Kellie Pickler
Kellie Dawn Pickler is an American country music artist and television personality. She gained fame as a contestant on the fifth season of the Fox reality show American Idol, eventually finishing in sixth place. In 2006, she signed to 19 Recordings and BNA Records as a recording artist, releasing...

 in comic relief segments. He also made a cameo appearance as himself on an episode of Tales from the Crypt
Tales from the Crypt (TV series)
Tales from the Crypt, sometimes titled HBO's Tales from the Crypt, is an American horror anthology television series that ran from 1989 to 1996 on the premium cable channel HBO...

, and appeared in a TV commercial advertising California (along with famous OG's such as Andrew Chavez and Steven Marczak).

Puck is active in philanthropic endeavors
Philanthropy
Philanthropy etymologically means "the love of humanity"—love in the sense of caring for, nourishing, developing, or enhancing; humanity in the sense of "what it is to be human," or "human potential." In modern practical terms, it is "private initiatives for public good, focusing on quality of...

 and charitable organization
Charitable organization
A charitable organization is a type of non-profit organization . It differs from other types of NPOs in that it centers on philanthropic goals A charitable organization is a type of non-profit organization (NPO). It differs from other types of NPOs in that it centers on philanthropic goals A...

s, co-founding the Puck-Lazaroff Charitable Foundation in 1982. The foundation supports the annual American Wine & Food Festival which benefits Meals on Wheels
Meals on Wheels
Meals on Wheels are programs that deliver meals to individuals at home who are unable to purchase or prepare their own meals. The name is often used generically to refer to home-delivered meals programs, not all of which are actually named "Meals on Wheels"...

 and has raised more than $
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

15 million since its inception.

Puck is The Honorary Chair Chef for the "Five Star Sensation" Benefit in Cleveland, Ohio
Cleveland, Ohio
Cleveland is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio and is the county seat of Cuyahoga County, the most populous county in the state. The city is located in northeastern Ohio on the southern shore of Lake Erie, approximately west of the Pennsylvania border...

 every two years helping to bring $10 million to support The Ireland Cancer Foundation of University Hospitals.

Puck's favorite food is macaroons.

Puck is married to designer Gelila Assefa.

Awards and honors


Spago Beverly Hills received a James Beard Foundation
James Beard Foundation
The James Beard Foundation is a New York-based national professional non-profit organization named in honor of James Beard that serves to promote the culinary arts by honoring chefs, wine professionals, journalists, and cookbook authors at annual award ceremonies and providing scholarships and...

 Outstanding Service Award in 2005. It was awarded 2 Michelin stars in the 2008 and 2009 Los Angeles Michelin Guide
Michelin Guide
The Michelin Guide is a series of annual guide books published by Michelin for over a dozen countries. The term normally refers to the Michelin Red Guide, the oldest and best-known European hotel and restaurant guide, which awards the Michelin stars...

.

In 1993, Spago Hollywood was inducted into the Nation's Restaurant News Fine Dining Hall of Fame. The next year it received the James Beard Restaurant of the Year Award.

In 2002, Puck received the 2001-2002 Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Service Show, Wolfgang Puck.

Restaurants

  • Spago, Puck's first restaurant opened on the Sunset Strip serving California cuisine
    California Cuisine
    California cuisine is a style of cuisine marked by an interest in fusion cuisine and in the use of freshly prepared local ingredients.The food is typically prepared with strong attention to presentation...

    .
  • Chinois on Main, Santa Monica, California
    Santa Monica, California
    Santa Monica is a beachfront city in western Los Angeles County, California, US. Situated on Santa Monica Bay, it is surrounded on three sides by the city of Los Angeles — Pacific Palisades on the northwest, Brentwood on the north, West Los Angeles on the northeast, Mar Vista on the east, and...

     (1983), Asian fusion.
  • Postrio, San Francisco (1989), Mediterranean and Asian fusion.
  • Spago, Beverly Hills (1997), known for serving California cuisine
    California Cuisine
    California cuisine is a style of cuisine marked by an interest in fusion cuisine and in the use of freshly prepared local ingredients.The food is typically prepared with strong attention to presentation...

    . Spago Beverly Hills, Spago Las Vegas, Spago Maui, and Spago Beaver Creek.
  • Postrio, Las Vegas
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Las Vegas is the most populous city in the U.S. state of Nevada and is also the county seat of Clark County, Nevada. Las Vegas is an internationally renowned major resort city for gambling, shopping, and fine dining. The city bills itself as The Entertainment Capital of the World, and is famous...

    .
  • Trattoria del Lupo, Las Vegas.
  • CUT in Beverly Hills, Las Vegas and Singapore's Marina Bay Sands resort.
  • Five-Sixty is located in Dallas, Texas
    Dallas, Texas
    Dallas is the third-largest city in Texas and the ninth-largest in the United States. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is the largest metropolitan area in the South and fourth-largest metropolitan area in the United States...

     and features Asian-inspired New American cuisine.
  • The Source, Washington, DC, modern interpretation of Asian cuisine located at the Newseum
    Newseum
    The Newseum is an interactive museum of news and journalism located at 555 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. The seven-level, museum features 15 theaters and 14 galleries. The Newseum's Berlin Wall Gallery includes the largest display of sections of the Berlin Wall outside of Germany...

    .
  • Wolfgang Puck B&G (2009) in Los Angeles
    Los Ángeles
    Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

    .
  • Wolfgang Puck in Walt Disney World. It is located in Downtown Disney
    Downtown Disney (Florida)
    Downtown Disney is an outdoor shopping, dining, and entertainment complex located at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Downtown Disney is open to the public, requires no admission fee, and offers complimentary parking and transportation to all Disney-operated Walt Disney...

    .
  • Museum of Science in Boston
    Boston
    Boston is the capital of and largest city in Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is regarded as the unofficial "Capital of New England" for its economic and cultural impact on the entire New England region. The city proper had...

    .
  • Wolfgang Puck Grille, a signature restaurant of MGM Grand Detroit
    MGM Grand Detroit
    The MGM Grand Detroit in Detroit, Michigan is one of three casino resort hotels in the city, and one of four in the Detroit–Windsor area. The luxury resort hotel opened on October 3, 2007 with a grand event which included models and celebrities including Ashanti, Kid Rock, male model Cameron...

     in Detroit.
  • Wolfgang Puck American Grille, a signature restaurant located in the Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City.
  • Springs Preserve Café, Las Vegas.
  • WP24 by Wolfgang Puck located in The Ritz-Carlton in downtown Los Angeles, modern Chinese cuisine.
  • Wolfgang Puck Pizzeria in Cucina, Las Vegas.
  • Wolfgang Puck Bistro in Tulsa, Oklahoma
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    Tulsa is the second-largest city in the state of Oklahoma and 46th-largest city in the United States. With a population of 391,906 as of the 2010 census, it is the principal municipality of the Tulsa Metropolitan Area, a region with 937,478 residents in the MSA and 988,454 in the CSA. Tulsa's...

    .
  • Jai by Wolfgang Puck in La Jolla, CA.
  • Wolfgang Puck Bistro located in the JC Penney Flagship store in the Manhattan Mall
    Manhattan Mall
    The Manhattan Mall, one of the few traditional indoor malls in New York City, is located at 33rd Street and Sixth Avenue. There are entrances to the 34th Street – Herald Square subway station and the 33rd Street PATH station, on the second basement level.This mall is a high-traffic shopping venue...

     in New York City
    New York City
    New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

     (opening in Summer 2012).
  • Wofgang Puck Express located in JC Penney in Pittsburgh at Monroeville Mall
    Monroeville Mall
    Monroeville Mall is a two-level, enclosed shopping mall in Monroeville, Pennsylvania, eastof Pittsburgh. It is located near the junction of Interstate 376 and I-76...

     (scheduled for opening in October 2012).

Television and movie credits

  • Keeping Up With The Kardashians
    Keeping Up with the Kardashians
    Keeping Up with the Kardashians is an American reality television series that airs on E!. The series premiered in October 2007. It focuses on the personal and professional lives of the members of the Kardashian and Jenner family. There will be a 7th Season to premiere in 2012.As of September 2011,...

     (Chef to Kim Kardashian
    Kim Kardashian
    Kimberly Noel "Kim" Kardashian is an American socialite, television personality, model, actress and businesswoman. She is known for the E! reality series that she shares with her family—Keeping Up with the Kardashians, and its spin-offs including Kourtney and Kim Take New York...

     & Kris Humphries
    Kris Humphries
    Kris Nathan Humphries is an American professional basketball player who last played for the NBA's New Jersey Nets. He became an unrestricted free agent in 2011.-Early life:...

     Wedding)
  • Hell's Kitchen (U.S.)
    Hell's Kitchen (U.S.)
    Hell's Kitchen is an American reality-television cooking competition broadcast on Fox...

     (Guest Judge) 2011 TV Show Series
  • The Next Food Network Star
    The Next Food Network Star
    The Next Food Network Star is a reality television series produced by and aired on the Food Network in the United States that awards the winner his or her own series on the Food Network...

     (Guest Judge) 2011 TV Show Series
  • The Smurfs
    The Smurfs (film)
    The Smurfs is a 2011 American 3D family film based on The Smurfs comic book series created by Peyo and the 1980s animated TV series it spawned. It was directed by Raja Gosnell and stars Neil Patrick Harris, Hank Azaria, Jayma Mays, and Sofía Vergara. It is the first CGI/live-action hybrid film to...

    (Chef Smurf) 2011 Movie
  • Top Chef: New York
    Top Chef (season 8)
    Top Chef: All-Stars is the eighth season of American reality television series Top Chef and was filmed first in New York City, New York and concluded in The Bahamas. This season consists of chefs from the previous 7 seasons who did not win the Title of Top Chef. The season premiered on December 1,...

     (Guest Judge) 2011 TV Show Series
  • Top Chef: Las Vegas
    Top Chef (season 6)
    Top Chef: Las Vegas is the sixth season of American reality television series Top Chef and was filmed first in Las Vegas, Nevada, and concluded in Napa, California...

     (Guest Judge) 2009 TV Show Series
  • Celebrity Cooking Showdown (Reality Cast Member) 2006 TV Show Series
  • Las Vegas (four episodes) 2006
  • AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie Quotes (Remarks by) 2005 TV Show Series
  • The Weather Man (Actor - Himself) 2005 Movie
  • The Simpsons - The Bart Wants What It Wants (Guest Star) - 2002 TV Show Series
  • Wolfgang Puck series 2001 S
  • The Muse (Actor - Himself) 1999 Movie
  • Iron Chef America: Battle of the Masters
  • Frasier episode: The Proposal (Actor - Himself) TV Show Series
  • The Jay Leno Show: Jaywalking (Himself) October 13, 2009
  • Las Vegas t.v. series: As Himself
  • Tales from the Crypt
    Tales from the Crypt (TV series)
    Tales from the Crypt, sometimes titled HBO's Tales from the Crypt, is an American horror anthology television series that ran from 1989 to 1996 on the premium cable channel HBO...

     - Werewolf Concerto (Himself) September 9, 1992

Mentioned by the character Richard Thornburg in Die Hard
Die Hard
Die Hard is a 1988 American action film and the first in the Die Hard film series. The film was directed by John McTiernan and written by Jeb Stuart and Steven E. de Souza. It is based on a 1979 novel by Roderick Thorp titled Nothing Lasts Forever, itself a sequel to the book The Detective, which...

(1988), played by William Atherton
William Atherton
William Atherton , born William Atherton Knight II, is an American film, stage and television actor.-Early life:Atherton was born in Orange, Connecticut, the son of Roby and Robert Atherton Knight...

, when on the phone to someone he wishes to take to a restaurant. He says, "Of course we can get a table. I know Wolfgang personally. I interviewed him."

External links