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Food

Wolfgang's Business Philosophy

Wolfgang Puck

Lesson time 15:42 min

Wolfgang shares the insight he's gained from years building a global brand. Analyzing his triumphs and failures, Wolfgang teaches the importance of risk-taking, innovation, and evolution.

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Wolfgang Puck
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Before I opened Spago in Las Vegas, there was no really good restaurant, well-known restaurant in Las Vegas. When we opened there, it was a risk. But part of my life is taking risks. If you want to be successful without taking any risk, it might be very difficult. I remember already as a kid I did ski jumping. And I said, I want to jump the farthest. So I took off as fast as I can, went down as low as possible, and stood up and tried to fly, and then landed and crashed, and wiped out totally. So I said, I didn't win because I wiped out, but I sure jumped farther than any other kid, you know? And so even as a young kid, I always took the risk. When leaving my home, maybe it would have been more safe staying at home, even with my stepfather being such a terrorist. It would still have been safer, in a way, then going 50 miles away to a new place. So now, in business, I have the same philosophy. So I took the risk. Go to Las Vegas, open a restaurant. And you know what? At the first few weeks, I thought it was the biggest mistake I ever made. We opened in beginning December, where every show was closed, and I knew Siegfried and Roy, you know, they are from Germany, they didn't perform. And the restaurant was empty. I had nine waiter station in the restaurant, and maybe we did 40 dinners. So for each waiter, we had one table. And then we got this great write-up in the Las Vegas paper. And after that came out, we had 60 or 70 guests. So that was in the summer. I said, oh my god, that's the biggest nightmare for me. I knew maybe this time I went too far. There's no customer who want to come to our restaurant in Vegas. They have all the big buffets. They're all-you-can-eat stuff and so forth. And I remember I used to go home at night, sit on the couch-- I rented an apartment not far from the restaurant-- sit on the couch with a bottle of red wine, drunk the whole bottle, and fell asleep in front of the television, waking up at six in the morning like all crooked and say, oh my god, now I have to go back there again. Three weeks later was New Year's. It got busy. And now, it's busy ever since. For 20 years, the restaurant is packed. Now you have more restaurants in Las Vegas from famous chefs than in any other city, I think. But we were there first. [MUSIC PLAYING] Well to me, if you would ask me who do I want today, a chef who is really creative or a chef who just execute, obviously to me creative is the most important thing. And I actually talked to Joe Roth the other day, who used to run the Disney studio and everything. And I said, how you run your studios? What do you have to do to be successful? And he said, you know, it's about creative, about having creative people in charge. You always can find somebody to run the studio, to do the financial, to do the business work. But if you're not c...


Become fearless in the kitchen

Legend has it Wolfgang Puck came up with his famous smoked salmon pizza when his restaurant ran out of bagels—and ended up changing the way America cooks. In his MasterClass, the five-time James Beard Award-winning chef behind more than 100 restaurants brings you into his kitchen. You’ll learn not only how to master starters, mains, sides, and cocktails, but also how to take risks to create memorable recipes of your own.



Reviews

4.7
Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

Loved it ... who knew there was so much I did not know ... this is so fantastic and such a joy to have

There were many little techniques that were given in the classes which are really helpful for the home cook. I must say that Wolfgang's personal style of teaching is not only informative, but his passion and humor come through to make it a great experience for the student!

I don't cook anything but still watched the whole class. Technical, practical, great. Everyone should watch Wolfgang's Journey and Business Strategy.

I love the art of cooking! Wolfgang is a master at simplifying and creating excellent gastronomic experiences


Comments

Jimmy S.

I've always liked Wolfgang but I respect him even more now. The stories really hit home for me.

Maidah A.

Really love listening to him! very informative. You're not just gonna learn cooking but also about life.

Cyzik R.

Kudos to you! you inspire me so much. I want to be a chef myself and your classes are very informative and your stories are interesting and bold!

Tatjana K.

Thoroughly enjoyed this Masterclass. Wolfgang Puck gave some practical, insightful and manageable lessons as well as some aspirational ones. Love this course.

Angel

Chef Wolfgang you are amazing, thank you for all the experience that you share with us. Currently I'm about to open my first pizzeria, and I was having conflict thinking about the menu, expenses, reveneu, people, quality, etc, but now I feel more confident about taking the right decisions from the start, thank you!!

Kris S.

Wow! Danke Wolfgang! Was für eine offene, inspirierende Sicht auf die Dinge! Sehr bereichernd <3

Rita L.

Chef Wolfgang your course is very interesting, especially the Oatmeal Risotto, Seafood gazpacho cold soup & Roasted Branzino will definitely try these dishes. Thank you for sharing your cooking experience and your culinary philosophy with us. Amazing Chef!

Bete I.

Perfect masterclass! I am not a cook, I am a composer but interested in new things. This was very nice spend time! Wolfgang you a perfect person, perfect chef! You have so emotions!!! Your joyful energy make me to try to cook some of your recipes. Thank you a looot! Bete Ilin

Sylvia

That reminds me. I should try making my own frozen pizzas at home for myself. I watched a YouTube tutorial about making pizza by Laura Vitale. She indicated that her father ran a pizza business! Her tips included using a pizza stone and one of those long handled boards to place the pizza in the hot oven. Goodbye pizzeria.

Leslie C.

I thought very highly of this session. Enchanting. Invigorating. Down to earth. Plus just a nice guy who wants to be remembered for bring a good father. Talent plus the right amount of risk-taking can certainly pay off!