While Michael Symon is a celebrity chef sensation around the country today, he wasn't always working towards TV fame. The chef got his start as a sous chef at Player's in Lakewood, Ohio and took a variety of chef jobs around the Cleveland area following that, from Caxton Cafe to Giavonni's to Piccolo Mondo. He had a dream to open his own restaurant and after years of working for others, finally opened Lola in Tremont, Ohio.
Then, the world began to take notice. In 1998, Food & Wine named Chef Symon as one of the top 10 chefs in America which led to guest appearances on the Food Network. Soon, he had his own show, The Melting Pot, on the Cooking Channel.
After a couple of years on The Melting Pot, he took a break from TV, but when he returned, it seemed to have been for good. Symon did a few specials with Bobby Flay and then came to Iron Chef seven years ago and The Chew two years ago.
Now Symon takes a look back with us as he shares the stories behind the names of his restaurants and his cookbooks as well as his nicknames for other celebrity chefs and the names of his favorite restaurants.
Check out the slideshow above to join us in playing the name game with Michael Symon!