Chef Vuong Loc of China Pie - Biography
Forced from their home by the Vietnam War, Vuong Loc’s family landed in Malaysia before a church group in the United States sponsored the family’s trip to begin life anew in Portage, Michigan. Beginning college at Western Michigan University, Loc soon realized that, like his chef mother, he’d much rather be in the kitchen. The Culinary Institute of America was Loc’s next stop, where he studied the classic French cuisine that his restaurants would become known for, and where he would meet his wife and business partner, Tricia.
Upon graduation, the Locs moved to Florida, where Vuong would work for The Ritz-Carlton. In 1999, they moved to Las Vegas, where Vuong worked at Aureole in the Mandalay Bay Hotel, before taking a sous chef position with the Patina Group, helping to open Pinot Brasserie in the Venetian Hotel. In 2000, Vuong and Tricia returned to his hometown in Michigan, but ultimately moved to Seattle to start their family and finally open a restaurant of their own.
In the summer of 2006, the Locs saw the birth of their daughter and the opening of Portage within two months of each other. Pig’n Whistle, the Locs second restaurant, opened just two years later. The success of these two restaurants earned Vuong a StarChefs Rising Stars Award in 2009. In 2014, another child in tow, the couple opened the seasonal, wood-fired, classical French-influenced Pomerol in Fremont. Right next door, the Locs are readying their latest venture, the Asian-influenced pizza-and-dumplings spot China Pie, slated for opening in late 2016