A Chat With Kathy Fang Of Fang Restaurant And Chef Dynasty

In this Financial Samurai podcast episode, I speak with Kathy Fang, star of the Food Network's Chef Dynasty, as well as owner of Fang Restaurant, one of my favorite Chinese restaurants in San Francisco. 

I've been visiting Fang Restaurant for over 15 years now. During my finance career downtown, I frequently took clients and colleagues there. I had the pleasure of meeting Kathy before she became a mom, and now we're both parents at the same school.

Listen to the episode on Apple or Spotify. Your reviews are appreciated!

Show Overview With Kathy Fang

The show tells a story of perseverance and pursuing your dreams. Good things don't just happen; you've got to keep putting yourself out there. The longer you try, the greater your chance of success.

Podcast: A Conversation With Kathy Fang of Fang Restaurant And Chef Dynasty and Sam Dogen, Financial Samurai

Despite there being more Chinese restaurants in America than McDonald's restaurants, Kathy faced challenges convincing producers to accept her idea for a Chinese cooking show. It's always tough to do something special, but the odds are even tougher for minorities due to simple math.

This unlevel playing field is one reason why many Asian people in America start small businesses. Without majority support to secure a job, the alternative is to create your own job and be your own boss.

Running a restaurant is a notoriously challenging business. High labor and food costs, coupled with the need for diverse expertise, make it difficult to succeed. Contrary to popular belief, making good food alone is not sufficient. But Fang Restaurant has been around for 15 years, a testament to its food and operational success.

An insightful part of the interview reveals how Kathy's dad, at age 74, finds joy and purpose in work, which contributes to his improved health. During COVID, Kathy's parents' health declined because they were less active. What I realized from my time playing pickleball with 70+-year-old players is that we don't have to end up immobile and frail into our golden years.

Finally, Kathy discusses the challenges of being a restaurateur and a mom to two kids. Raising kids is demanding with a regular 9-5 job, and it becomes even tougher when working restaurant hours and being on your feet 10-12 hours a day. The dilemma between career and family is an ongoing battle many parents face.

Where To Find Kathy Fang

You can find Kathy on Instagram @ChefKathyFang and on her website at KathyFang.com

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