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Tudor SesermanNEW MAKER!

St. Louis, MO


Tudor Seserman of Element was studying philosophy in graduate school when a friend showed him an article about an alum who'd left academia behind to open a restaurant.

Looking back on his path to the executive chef position at Element, Seserman sees that he was destined for the restaurant business. Ever since he was a fifteen-year-old living in New Jersey, Seserman was drawn to the kitchen. Even from his first cooking gig, he looked at the job as something more than just a way to earn a paycheck. That first gig was at an upscale restaurant in New Jersey, where Seserman learned the basics from a chef who'd come up in the kitchens of big casinos. In retrospect, Seserman admits that the French and Italian-inflected New America cuisine he was serving was a bit stale — at least by today's standards — but it was a foundational experience that set the stage for where he is today. He started out as an inexperienced cook on the salad station, and worked his way up to second in command before leaving the restaurant to move to St. Louis for graduate school.

Seserman attended the University of Missouri-St. Louis' graduate program in philosophy, but he paid the bills by cooking at several restaurants around town — Araka, Prime 1000, Elaia. Though he loved philosophy, he found that academia pulled him directions that he did not want to go.

As it became increasingly apparent that a career in academia was unlikely, Seserman turned to what he already knew — cooking. After working for Ben Poremba at Elaia, he went on to help him open Old Standard and Parigi before moving on to his current position at Element.