2023 Chefs

Charles Phan

The Slanted Door

San Francisco, CA

Featured: Saturday, May 13 Grand Tasting

Charles Phan is the inventor of modern Vietnamese cuisine in America and Executive Chef and Owner of The Slanted Door family of restaurants.  Born in Da Lat, Vietnam in 1962, the Phan family relocated just before the fall of Saigon, and spent two years in Guam before finally settling in San Francisco’s Chinatown in 1977.  A former architecture student at UC BerkLey (and a one-time software salesman), Phan opened his first restaurant, The Slanted Door, on Valencia Street in San Francisco’s Mission District in 1995.  It was quickly recognized for its unique Vietnamese flavor.The restaurant relocated from its original space to its current location in the historic Ferry Building in 2004.  Phan’s other restaurants are: Out the Door, OTD, South at SFJAZZ, Hard Water, The Coachman, and Green Cap Catering.  All are located in San Francisco, California.

In 2004, Phan won the James Beard Foundation award for “Best Chef: California.”  The Slanted Door won Outstanding Restaurant award by the Foundation in 2014.

Charles has been featured on Food Network’s Iron Chef America and Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything.  In addition to his awards and accolades, Phan is a leader in the San Francisco food community and has participated in countless charitable events.

Charles’ first cookbook “Vietnamese Home Cooking” published by Ten Speed Press won 2013 IACP Chefs and Restaurants cookbook award.  His second cookbook “The Slanted Door” was published in Fall 2014 also by Ten Speed Press.  The book won amazon.com’s Best Cookbooks of the Year, as well as New York Times Book Review and Washington Post.