If you’re constantly worried about your health, or constantly worried about your mental health, and you’ve got no way to address it, that doesn’t get you better any faster. So, the restaurant industry is a funny little micro-cosmo that I said it has to — you know — I think a lot of it is ignoring the problem and drowning it in ways that feel good, or in the very least, allow you not to feel anything.– Natalia Hess Kopfler
Natalia Hess Kopfler was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to a family with history in the restaurant industry and was raised to appreciate the art of cooking. Kopfler entered the service industry as a teenager. After sixteen years in the industry, Kopfler has held nearly every position imaginable — from dishwasher to kitchen manager — and is able to reflect on her experiences with wisdom. Kopfler details the struggles of sexism, healthcare, and drug and alcohol abuse and provides advice for those struggling in the industry. Currently, Kopfler is the pastry chef and kitchen manager of Freret Beer Room in New Orleans, LA.
Bibliographic citation for this interview:
Hess, Natalia. Natalia Hess Interview by Dickerson, Mallory. Videorecording, transcript, November 13, 2018. Service Industry Collection.
Documentary and Oral History Studio, Loyola University New Orleans. https://vimeo.com/305075023
For more information about the Documentary and Oral History Studio’s interview collections and their use, please contact studio director Justin A. Nystrom. This interview and all related material including text and images are © 2018 Documentary and Oral History Studio, Loyola University New Orleans.