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#RedefineAtoZ: Seng Luangrath, the Chef Leading the Lao Food Movement

Seng Luangrath opened Washington, D.C.'s first Lao restaurant and has earned recognition from Michelin and the James Beard Foundation.
Seng Luangrath
Chef Seng Luangrath, a pioneer of the Lao food movement, opened Thip Khao in Washington D.C. in 2014, the first Laotian restaurant in the city.Paulo Chun / NBC News

NAME: Seng Luangrath

AGE: 48

HOMETOWN: Vientiane, Laos


How do you introduce yourself?


What inspires you?

I'm happy to say many things inspire: life, my family, the opportunity to share more about my culture and food.

What challenges you?

Introducing new people to my cuisine, and it's a challenge I always look forward to.

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Tell us about the biggest risk you ever took.

Taking over Bangkok Golden without any restaurant experience.

What are you reading/watching/listening to these days?

I'm reading a lot of Buddhism quotes to help keep my mind at peace. I'm not watching anything specific, but whenever I get a chance to watch TV, it's most likely a light comedy. I always listen to any '80s music.

If you weren’t doing what you’re doing now, what job would you want to have?

I'm not sure. It could either be something related with traveling or kids. I love them!

What’s your motto?

I just took a life test to find my motto and I couldn't agree more with the result: "If you can dream it, you can achieve it."

I celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month because...

...I'm happy and very proud to be Asian American, I celebrate it everyday!

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