Who is our chef?
Chef Nong was born in Bangkok, Thailand in 1941. The oldest of five children, she has two brothers and two sisters.
Nong began cooking at age 12 with her mother. Her family had very little money. She wanted her brothers and sisters to have a good education-- better than hers -- and knew they would need her support. So every day, she walked to the little corner market to purchase vegetables, meat, and other ingredients and brought them home to cook for her family.
Even after Nong married and had four children of her own, all the recipes passed down to her from her mother and grandmother remained fresh in her mind waiting to be put to good use.
Nong's professional career began at age 35, when she got a job cooking for Jitpochana, a large chain restaurant in Thailand. She then traveled to Malaysia and cooked for the Tonburee restaurant. A few years later, in Singapore, she became the Head Chef for the Thaipann Hotel.
In 1991, Nong accepted a job offer from the Royal Orchid restaurant in Minneapolis and has been cooking in the Twin Cities ever since. She has cooked for Sawasdee, Dara Thai, Ruammit, and Taste of Thailand, to name a few. She has received wonderful reviews for her cooking in the Star Tribune newspaper.
When True Thai in Minneapolis opened, she was a head chef. She used recipes that was passed down to her from generations to create one of the best Thai restaurant we had in Minnesota.
Couple years later Nong was ready and opend her own Nong's Thai cuisine in Golden Valley and now with our new brand Coconut Thai.