Props to Pops

Props to Pops

Baldor Editors Jun 13 , 2016

Baldor knows a thing or two about family run businesses.  Our current owner, TJ Murphy, was raised in our warehouse doing every imaginable job under the direction of his dad, founder Kevin Murphy.  In honor of Father’s Day, we looked up some other industry kids who followed in their dad’s footsteps.   



Like TJ, Marc Forgione got an early start as a cook in his father’s hugely influential restaurant An American Place. Unable to shake the chef bug, he went on to open a number of acclaimed restaurants including Restaurant Marc Forgione, American Cut and Khe-Yo. In an interview with Andrew Zimmern, Marc Forgione said the following of his father:

 “At the time, I didn’t know I was learning how to cook, but when I actually got serious about it and started cooking I realized I already knew a lot more stuff then the average seventeen-year-old.

I think that my father has influenced every American chef that has come after him. Without my father and the work of other American chefs from his generation, I don’t believe we would have the green markets and beautiful American ingredients that chefs today work with on a daily basis.”



Despite his father’s wishes to the contrary, Cedric Vongerichten would not stay out of the kitchen.  Today, he works as chef de cuisine at his father’s restaurant Perry Street.  In an interview with Zagat, Jean-Georges recalled his reaction to his son’s career choice:

 “In the beginning, I wanted to discourage Cedric because it's not an easy life. You work until midnight. You work the holidays. You work when everybody else is at home watching TV and eating. It's not for everyone, so I tried to push him away to be a lawyer or doctor or something else, something where you could have a life because it's difficult to have a life when you're a restaurateur.”  



Jason Wang was only eight years old when his family moved to New York from the Xi’an province of China. In 2005, Jason’s father David Shi opened a small restaurant called Xi’an Famous Foods that served dishes based on recipes from his own father.  By the time Jason joined the family business in 2009, the restaurant was already a favorite among industry insiders like Anthony Bourdain. Today, the father and son duo have opened eleven locations and are planning for further expansion.



Russ and Daughters was founded in 1914 by German immigrant, Joel Russ, and was run for years by his three daughters.  It is believed to be the first store with “& daughters” in the title.  Today, Joel Russ’s great grand-daughter Nikki Russ Federman runs the iconic Lower East Side appetizing shop with the same tireless work ethic that he instilled in his daughters almost a century ago.

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