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Born and raised in Troy, New York, Chef Lee Anne Wong, a 2nd generation Chinese- American, was not initially drawn to the kitchen, instead, she favored sports –softball and ice hockey. Lee Anne’s passion for cuisine ignited during her first year studying Fashion Design at the Fashion Institute of Technology when she started cooking for friends.
Lee Anne went on to get her culinary degree from The French Culinary Institute (FCI). Thereafter, Chef Wong jumped into the restaurant world working for several years at Marcus Samuelsson’s Aquavit, later serving as an integral part of the opening staff at Jean Georges Vongrichten’s Chinese venture, Restaurant 66. She has also cooked and staged in kitchens all over the world, including The French Laundry, Charlie Trotter’s of Chicago, Nobu, The Four Seasons, Trio, Casa Oaxaca in Mexico, and Cap Jaluca in the British Virgin Islands.
Chef Wong brought her culinary skills to an even wider audience when she appeared as a chef-testant on season one of Bravo’s flagship series Top Chef. A fan favorite, Wong’s fusion of flavors took her to number four in the competition. The show’s producers saw her innate talent and media experience, and brought her on as the Supervising Culinary Producer on Top Chef, and its spin-off series, Top Chef Masters. She has also worked as a culinary consultant on Warner Brother’s No Reservations, PBS’ Chef Story, and most recently Bravo’s Rocco’s Dinner Party.
In December 2013, Wong made the giant move from New York City to Honolulu, to open up Koko Head Cafe, an island style brunch house. Her first cookbook, Dumplings All Day Wong, was published in August 2014.