Tiffani Faison compares working in restaurant kitchens to playing “the weirdest sport on earth”. If the popular and critical success of her ever-expanding Big Heart Hospitality Group is any indication, it’s fair to say she’s winning. With the opening of Sweet Cheeks in 2011 and Tiger Mama in 2015, followed by the bar Fool's Errand in 2018 and the upscale Italian-American spot Orfano in 2019, she's played a major role in transforming the Fenway neighborhood into a dining destination. Faison didn’t grow up tugging on a grandmother’s apron strings, she got a peek at the chaos of kitchen life working as a busser for Todd English, and felt an inexplicable tug to jump into the game. We talk about getting crushed learning to cook on the line, how she ended up in sports bar-filled Fenway, and why declining to open her “Look at me I’m a Big Deal Chef,” restaurant was the best decision ever.