[Chef Talk]

Talking dim sum and sharp objects with Social House chef

Social House executive sushi chef John Chien Lee is a regular at Ping Pang Pong.
Photo: Beverly Poppe

John Chien Lee has been a part of Social House since it opened at TI. He started as an assistant sushi chef and worked his way up; now he’s executive sushi chef at the restaurant’s Crystals location. He can do pretty much anything, as he proved working elsewhere while Social House was transitioning into its current home. “I was somewhere else, on the fryer,” he said. “French fries, croquettes, anything you need to fry, I’m your guy.”

Best place to take his crew: Ping Pang Pong (Gold Coast, 367-7111) “We have a lot of crew at Social House that have been here a long time, and we’re like a family. We work as a team. Instead of going out late at night, we go there to have our dim sum fix before work.”

Favorite burger: Bachi Burger (two locations, bachiburger.com) “I want something easy and nothing fancy. I just order the original, but all their burgers are great. It’s just better than other burger places in town for me.”

Utensil he can’t live without: knives “My wife cooks at home. I say I don’t have time to cook at home, but really, I just cannot use my wife’s knife. I’m picky. All my knives stay at the restaurant.”

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