Major Conversations with Charles Phan, Executive Chef
Filed under: Culinary
January 25, 2018
San Francisco Campus to Host Owner / Executive Chef of The Slanted Door
The Culinary Department at The Art Institute of California—San Francisco, a campus of Argosy University, is pleased to present Major Conversations with Charles Phan on Tuesday, January 30, 2018, from 11:30AM-12:30PM in Room 411. All students, faculty, and staff are invited to attend.
About Chef Charles Phan
Now Owner and Executive Chef of award-winning restaurant The Slanted Door, Charles Phan was born in Da Lat, Vietnam in 1962 and later moved to Guam and then to San Francisco in 1977. With both of his parents working two jobs in the US, Charles took on cooking for the entire family—ten people in total. Luckily, Charles had a passion for food and was happy to take on the role of family chef. His personal flavor profiles originated largely from his mother's French/Vietnamese cooking style, although he was also charmed by American traditions and enjoyed creating elaborate Thanksgiving and Christmas feasts.
Throughout high school, Charles bussed tables at local restaurants and began taking notice of the avant-garde Bay Area restaurants of the time, crediting Chez Panisse and Zuni Café as important culinary influences. Following college, Charles took over the family garment business and spent several years working in software before returning to the culinary field and opening The Slanted Door with his family in 1995.
His vision for The Slanted Door was to create a restaurant with a stylish ambiance and traditional, time-honored Vietnamese techniques and recipes. He wanted an ingredient-driven menu that changed often and relied on fresh, high-quality foods. This strategy—which strayed far from all other Vietnamese restaurants in San Francisco at the time—led to phenomenal success for the Slanted Door.
In 2004, Charles earned the James Beard Award for Best Chef California and, in 2014, The Slanted Door won Outstanding Restaurant. Charles has also written two award-winning cookbooks and made several television appearances. He has since opened several other restaurants including Out the Door, OTD, Hard Water, and Rice & Bones. Today, he remains on the cutting edge of Vietnamese cuisine and continues to prepare everything from scratch using farm-fresh, locally sourced products.
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