Welcome to part 1 of our In The Kitchen series. Today we are featuring Dave Nguyen, a fellow Seattleite who blogs about food, fashion and travel over on food hipster 206.
If you follow Dave on Instagram, twitter or via his blog, you immediately get a sense of his love for the above. He’s constantly out and about, checking out new venues and sharing his favorite Sunday dishes with the family.
Kim chi fried rice with kalbi beef and a fried egg @ Marination Mobile – Seattle, WA
In this new series I welcome all food bloggers, photographers, home cooks, restaurant goers and owners to share your In The Kitchen experience. You don’t have to be the cook but you can certainly share your foodie pics with us.
In the second part of our In The Kitchen series, Dave will take us around Seattle and show us his favorite food truck and restaurant spots; but for now, let’s kick things off with a little background info…
B: Bridgette D: Dave
B: Do tell… are you originally from Seattle? What do you do for a living?
D: Born and raised in the 206, Southend! All day reppin’ Sonics, Huskies, and Seahawks! Biggest influencers growing up were my dad and GP.
I’m the Social Media Manager at the Get Schooled Foundation, where we use educational initiatives and pop/hip-hop culture sizzle to inspire students to get to school and do well in class. In my free time, I like to eat out, take photos of food and post them on my blog, www.foodhipster206.com.
B: What brought about your love for food and fashion? Aside from the fact that we all loooooove both ; )
D: Food is a part of my ongoing education. It is a gateway to understanding culture, people, and tradition. I love food whether it’s from hole-in-the-walls or high-end restaurants, as long as it’s inspired and made from the soul.
I’ve always loved fashion. It started with Jordan sneakers and baggy hip-hop clothes, and then evolved to selvedge denim and tailor-fitted urban menswear. Fashion has always been my art and freedom of expression.
B: When did you begin blogging on Food Hipster 206? Are all your photos taken with your mobile device?
D: I started my blog at the end of 2011 to document my appreciation and continuing education in food.
About 95% of the photos on my blog are taken with my SLR. All my mobile photos are on Instagram. I can’t capture every experience with my SLR so the Iphone comes through in those tough situations. My blog is to tell a story and my Instagram is to document an experience in the moment.
Grits with Chinese sausage and prawns @ Joule – Seattle, WA
D: I love goooood Asian food! What impresses me the most about Revel is their homage to delicious street style food from the homeland, but improved upon as next generation fare.
The list highlights the food in Seattle that really speaks to me with its flavor, quality, execution and creativity (or tradition). I haven’t tried every restaurant in Seattle, so the list is always evolving.
B: In your Instagram gallery, you share photos of mom’s cooking. What has been your favorite dish of hers growing up? Is there a family tradition you’d like to share? Perhaps a holiday meal or a recipe that’s been passed down through generations?
D: No Vietnamese restaurants in Seattle can beat my mom’s cooking. My favorite mom dishes growing up are Oxtail Pho, Bun Bo Hue (spicy beef noodle soup), and Mi Quang (turmeric yellow rice noodles with shrimp and pork in a pork bone broth with fish sauce, garlic, and shallots).
Mom’s dish – Mi Quang
A memorable family tradition is Thanksgiving because there’s always Vietnamese food served alongside American food. You would have turkey, gravy, stuffing, mash potatoes, fried rice, bun (rice noodles), banh bot loc (tapioca dumplings), and goi (salad). No cranberry sauce but we always had fish sauce. When you plate your dish, the fish sauce always ends up in the turkey giving it quite the flavor. I love it!
B: How has mobile photography influenced your love of food photography? Do you find yourself having to take a picture everywhere you go? Are people open to you taking their photos while dining?
D: My work in mobile photography has significantly improved my eye, technique, and creativity for my food and overall photography. Instagram showcases some of the world’s best food as smartphones make pictures easily accessible. I’m constantly sourcing it for inspiration.
I’m very selective when taking pictures of my dishes to post on Instagram. I want the pictures to articulate the same feelings I get when seeing, smelling, and eating the dish. The only people I impose on for food photos are my friends and family. They understand my blog hustle, yet some laugh at me. I even had a friend post a picture of me on the Azntakingpicturesoffood.tumblr.com. I totally embrace it.
B: How do restaurant owners and staff react to you taking photos? Have you ever had anyone question you? Do you introduce yourself as a food blogger when dining out?
D: About half of the time the restaurants will inquire and talk to me about what I do, who I shoot for, and ask about my blog name. It’s nice to engage with the restaurant staff, but unless I’m asked, I usually don’t introduce myself as a food blogger.
Kitchen @ Matts in the Market – Seattle, WA
Chicken adobo sandwich @ Matt’s in the Market
B: Name 3 of your favorite cuisines and tell us why you they’re your faves.
D: Vietnamese – distinct home flavors; spicy fresh soups; charbroiled grilled pork; and pungent fish sauce.
Taiwanese – melt-in-your-mouth soup dumplings, sweet yet savory pork belly baos, and excellent sautéed vegetables.
New American – creative, freshly sourced ingredients; fine techniques and execution; and food that constantly challenges the norm.
Pork belly bao (Taiwanese pork burger) @ Facing East – Bellevue, WA
B: Is there a Seattle spot that you haven’t been to yet but would love to check out?
D: Spinasse, Hue Ky Mi Gia, and Sitka & Spruce are next on my to- do list.
B: And finally, can we find you in the kitchen? ; ) Do you consider yourself a good cook?
D: Sorry, but you cannot find me in the kitchen unless I’m putting up the groceries or taking out the garbage. My fiancée is a good cook and she makes most of our meals. She usually cooks different variations of Asian stir-fry rice dishes or soup noodles.
I love Seattle. I’m a food blogger and social media enthusiast. I enjoy sports, clothing, coffee, eating, taking photos and spending time with friends and family.
Please feel free to leave a comment below if you’d like to be featured or if you know of someone who you think makes the best kitchen creations.
And, if you’re on Instagram, you can tag your pics with #Juxt_InTheKitchen.