Celebrated Chef Kimmy Tang is widely considered a pioneer in Asian fusion cuisine with over three decades of culinary experience. Kimmy was born and raised in Saigon and was first introduced to the culinary arts by watching the family chef prepare sumptuous meals for her family. At an early age, she learned how to prepare traditional Vietnamese dishes because her mother would not allow their chef to prepare meals for Kimmy and insisted that she prepare her own meals stating, “You never know when it will come in handy.”
After the fall of Saigon in 1975, the Tang’s lost everything and tried to flee Vietnam. Finally in 1988, after a seven-month detour in a Filipino refugee camp, the Tang family arrived in Bakersfield, California.
After finding safety in the U.S., Kimmy went to work in a Chinese restaurant while attending night classes to learn English. After relocating to Los Angeles, Chef Kimmy perfected her culinary training in a popular Japanese restaurant while also pursuing a fashion design degree. Upon graduating, she decided to combine her culinary and design talents by creating her own celebrated Michelia Asian Bistro.
Eager to unleash her culinary and creative talents, Chef Kimmy used Michelia to feature foods inspired by old Chinese and Vietnamese recipes while incorporating French cooking techniques to soothe Southern California tastes. This flavorful blend “wowed” critics from the L.A. Times, Los Angeles Magazine and many other publications.
Longing to explore the world and perfect her culinary skills, Chef Kimmy sold Michelia in 2008 and started a journey to discover traditional recipes from Greece, Hungary, Spain, Romania, France, Italy, Germany and her home country of Vietnam. This served to expand her cooking repertoire even further. Finally, setting in Romania, Chef Kimmy became a culinary consultant for Romania’s largest film studio. She also hosted a popular local TV cooking show.
After being inspired by her time abroad, Chef Kimmy came back to the United States in 2009 and opened her first pho restaurant, 9021Pho in Beverly Hills. This unique restaurant caters to the health conscious food-lover, featuring Asian recipes with French influences and California inspired flair. Following the success of Beverly Hills, Chef Kimmy opened a second location in Westlake Village, California in 2010. Hollywood’s elite cannot get enough of Chef Kimmy’s healthy approach to Vietnamese cooking. Mega stars Jackie Chan, Maggie Q., Larry King, Mickey Rourke and Sofia Vergara make up Chef Kimmy’s fan base!
Finally, Kimmy’s deep sense of compassion for people and her desire to help children are her cornerstones. In Romania, Kimmy started volunteering her time at a local orphanage. Upon her return to the U.S., Chef Kimmy continued her work with children’s charities such as the Blue Heron Foundation, Casa Pacifica, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the Special Olympics. It is now her mission in life to help children whenever and however possible. She has already started several initiatives with the 9021Pho restaurants that support local communities and will soon roll out national program.