Jeff Grimm just landed the job as executive chef at Punch Bowl Social
-- restaurateur Robert Thompson's dining and entertainment warehouse on Broadway -- a month ago, but he's already thrilled about what he calls a "community stable" environment, where teamwork and pitching in are part of the kitchen's culture. He learned the mentality at his first job as a teenager, working in a family-owned Italian eatery 45 minutes outside of New York City in Connecticut, where the owners treated employees like customers and the head chef could be found chipping in at the dish sink, on the prep line or wherever else help was needed. Grimm and his family moved around the country a lot when he was a kid, but he managed to stick around that Connecticut spot long enough -- eventually working his way up to the line -- to soak up the work ethic and passion for cooking that would shape the rest of his career.
See also: The Nickel's Chris Thompson Talks Chinese Food and Wood-Fired Cooking