Chef Luke Nguyen's Love For Asia

27 December 2015
Read Time: 1.3 mins

Luke Nguyen has many strings to his bow – acclaimed chef with a restaurant in Sydney, TV host, travel writer and now APT's ambassador helping Aussie travellers see the best of Asia.

The world-famous whiz in the kitchen has another love besides cooking: Asia. Find out why Luke is passionate about all exotic corners of the East ...

 Luke Nguyen on tour with APT

"My favourite corners of Asia are Vietnam, Cambodia and Burma. I spend most of my time in Saigon and just opened my own cooking school there called Grain, where we do classes teaching a full Vietnamese menu. We also have our own wet market where guests get to choose their ingredients and super-fresh produce.

"My favourite time of the day in Vietnam is around dinner when it’s not so hot and locals hit the streets to eat and drink. There is always great energy.

"Every visitor to Vietnam should eat pho for breakfast. The broth simmers for eight hours to draw out flavours from the bones, spices and vegetables.

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 Luke Nguyen recommends pho for breakfast

"It’s served with silky rice noodles, slow braised beef brisket and finely sliced sirloin and accompanied by bean sprouts, sweet basil, sawtooth coriander, chilli and lime.

"I host APT trips in Vietnam and Cambodia and want my guests to see these places through a local’s eyes while getting a behind-the-scenes glimpse of tradition, culture and the daily lives of the people.

"I have a close connection to Asia because my mother is Vietnamese/Chinese, I was born in Thailand and raised in a restaurant in NSW’s Cabramatta, and I travel to Asia not only for cooking inspiration but also to be closer to my heritage and culture. I am extremely proud to share all this with APT guests.

"The time is right to visit Myanmar because what was once closed to the world is now opening up, parts that were off-limits are now accessible, and it’s an incredibly beautiful land rich in culture and traditions."

Visit your local Flight Centre store or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest deals on travelling to Asia.

Sarah Nicholson

Sarah Nicholson has been a journalist since 1999, combining her passion for writing and travel full time for the past six years, with work adventures taking her from South Africa's Sabi Sand Game Reserve to the Northwest Passage in the Canadian Arctic. While she has visited 57 countries on six continents, and snapped thousands of photos during her jaunts around the globe, Sarah's heart belongs to Asia with Vietnam topping her list of favourite destinations.