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Staying local
A dessert perches near peaches in Chez Panisse's kitchen. "We're driven by fresh, seasonal food that we buy at farmers' markets," Waters says. "From the very beginning we have worked to develop relationships with farmers."

Waters' belief in staying small and local extends to her business philosophy. Chez Panisse-trained chefs have gone on to launch dozens of new ventures and a few gourmet food chains, but Waters has resisted expansion.

"I couldn't imagine trying to operate another restaurant!" she says. "That's why there's no Chez Panisse East or Chez Panisse Las Vegas."

NEXT: A global vision

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