From San Francisco:
From Family Cooking to Rising Star
Susan Dyer Reynolds
After arriving in the United States at age 14, Luke Sung dove head-first into the culinary world. He began his career working in restaurants with his father and uncle and then moved on to cook in the company of chef Julian Serrano at Masa’s, chef Daniel Boulud at Daniel and chef Sylvain Portay at The Dining Room in The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco. Sung now owns and operates Isa, named after his daughter, Isabelle, where he prepares French-style tapas in the Marina District.
Food Paper: Who or what was your biggest cooking influence?
Luke Sung : The time I spent working with Julian Serrano at Masa’s and Sylvain Portay at The Ritz-Carlton Dining Room.
TFP: Why did you become a chef?
LS: I always liked food. I was always involved in the family business. My dad owns Eric’s and my uncle has Eliza’s. All of our restaurants are named after our kids.
TFP: Proudest cooking or restaurant moment?
LS: Being nominated by the James Beard Foundation as a Rising Star Chef in 2002 and 2003 for Isa.
TFP: Favorite ingredient?
LS: Onions. They really enhance a sauce or soup, but you shouldn’t be able to taste the onions, they should be integrated into the flavor.
TFP: Least favorite ingredient?
LS: Okra. It’s just kind of slimy.
TFP: If you weren't a chef, what would you be?
LS: I think I’d like to be a restaurant designer.
3324 Steiner St.
San Francisco, CA 94123
Dyer Reynolds is the Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of Northside