Anton Piotrowski, Steven Edwards: ‘MasterChef: The Professionals is like steroids compared to a Michelin star’

The Staff Canteen

While it is a risk to go on MasterChef: The Professionals, doing well, especially if you win, can be more of a boost than getting a Michelin star. 

Or at least, this is the view of our latest Grilled podcast co-host, Steven Edwards, who won series 6 in 2013, and his guest in this week's episode, MasterChef: The Professionals winner in 2012 and chef-owner of restaurant Roski, Anton Piotrowski.

Anton discussed how, while a three-star restaurant won’t usually have to worry about getting reservations and will likely be full every night, a one-star restaurant won’t be like that necessarily and in those cases a competition like MasterChef, that is shown to a large number of people and makes people aware of the chefs behind their food, is likely to be more of a boost to bookings than getting a Michelin star.

Anton said: “MasterChef is like steroids compared to a Michelin star, and that’s not me dissing Michelin or knocking it on the head, it’s a massive achievement for any chef to achieve it.

“You can have three-Michelin-stars on the window [and] you will be full, [but] one star [and] you're still gonna struggle to fill a restaurant. And that's the power of MasterChef. It's absolutely incredibly powerful and you can ask Steven, to this day people still come to see him because of MasterChef.”

Anton also went on to discuss how his attitude towards running a restaurant has changed.

He said: "A Michelin star is something, that when I was younger, I pushed too hard for. I thought that was my goal and that was what food was about, and accolades on your walls and going sitting down at an AA dinner table [was] what made me a chef. And then I woke up one day, after having this star, and it didn't change the food. Didn't change what I was doing. All I wanted to do was make my food taste tastier and start understanding what the chefs behind me were here for."

He didn’t want to come off too negative towards Michelin though and continued: “Michelin is an amazing accolade to have, but it's not what I get up for in the morning.”

It’s the restaurant and cooking for the customers that are important to him now.

“I'm not chasing it anymore at all,” he said. “I'm chasing a full restaurant and I'm chasing a business. Because, what people have forgotten about in the hospitality industry [is] we're running businesses not running things to chase for stars and when you start doing that, you see restaurants opening and closing all the time.

“This restaurant, every table has to be full and if I'm not filling every table every day, lunch and dinner, then I'm not doing it correctly.”

In these challenging times…

The Staff Canteen team are taking a different approach to keeping our website independent and delivering content free from commercial influence. Our Editorial team have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience in a balanced way. We would never put up a paywall and restrict access – The Staff Canteen is open to all and we want to keep bringing you the content you want; more from younger chefs, more on mental health, more tips and industry knowledge, more recipes and more videos. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector - we want to do more for you.

A single coffee is more than £2, a beer is £4.50 and a large glass of wine can be £6 or more.

Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you.

The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 16th December 2021

Anton Piotrowski, Steven Edwards: ‘MasterChef: The Professionals is like steroids compared to a Michelin star’