Our chef de cuisine is no newbie to Lao cooking, having catered traditional Lao dishes served with his own twist at events for Lao Heritage Foundation and Legacies of War, Deth also hosted khao poon pop-ups around the D.C. area including at it's only Lao restaurant Thip Khao. An experienced master cook, Deth also has an eye for plating and arranging food that doesn't detract from the new, yet familiar flavors he serves up.
Born in Laos, Chef Deth learned Lao cuisine through his mother who also taught him textile weaving. As refugees, Deth's family relocated to Texas, then Washington, before settling in San Diego, where the sunny California climate helps grow their organic vegetables. Deth's career in cooking almost didn't happen until a neighbor tasted one of his meals and told him he'd be "crazy" not to pursue. After graduating from Culinary Institute of America, Deth found himself working various kitchen positions including line cook, pastry chef, assistant sous chef, freelance private yacht chef, and finally as chef de cuisine at doi moi in Washington D.C., creating eclectic Southeast Asian cuisine that has won accolades from local press. Soon after he co-launched with Chef Seng Luangrath the Khao Poon pop-up noodle bar, originally intended to run two months but proved so popular it extended for seven months, creating a fan base for a future brick & mortar Khao Poon.
"In Laotian homes and social gatherings, food is the medium through which people share and express their family and neighborhood bonds" says Chef Deth. "Religious ceremonies are no different, as Lao people show respect by providing food to the local monks. I believe it is instilled in us, the basis behind 'lieng', to offer nourishment. I feel privileged to have grown up surrounded by so many talented cooks."