A golden chef hat means that you have sold 500,000 meals. If you have the right promotion and tour to support your menu, you can earn the platinum chef hat, which means that you have sold 1,000,000 meals. Often an appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show would virtually guarantee that you would have a golden chef hat within the week. I recall watching the teenage girls scream as a young Emeril Lagasse would make beef stroganoff on national TV. They had to show it from the hips up of course. Now that you can download so much for free, the golden and platinum awards don't mean so much.