Whether it's work or a work-out, Mr Michael Chernow is not a man to do things by halves. "Every day, we have to make a decision," he tells MR PORTER, in this exclusive lifestyle short. "The decision to work hard, or to not work hard." It isn't hard to tell which path he takes.
"I really feel as if I started my career in 1993, when I was 13 years old," says the 32-year-old general manager and co-owner of The Meatball Shop, New York's wildly popular, four-strong chain of meatball restaurants. "Back then, I was delivering vegan food," he explains. "But even before then, I was busy. When I was 10, 11 years old I was walking every dog in the neighbourhood. I've always had an underlying drive to succeed."
That drive manifests itself in a passionate and determined attitude towards exercise, too - a part of life that, by Mr Chernow's own admission, he would be lost without. "I had an epiphany in my early twenties," he explains. "I realised that if I wanted to make anything of myself I would have to change and take action." It's a promise that he has promptly fulfilled.''
After 15 years spent working his way up the ranks in the restaurant business, Mr Chernow and his business partner Mr Daniel Holzman opened their first restaurant in February 2010, on Manhattan's Lower East Side. It was a moment he describes as the realisation of a dream. "We pulled the paper off the windows, and there was a line from the front of the restaurant that went all around the block. Daniel and I had no idea it was going to be that big. From that day, everything changed."