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Luke Nguyen’s family fled Vietnam as boat people in 1978. They spent several months at a refugee camp in Thailand where Luke was born, before migrating to Australia.
Luke says his passion for food stems from his “strict, food-obsessed parents” who ran a restaurant in the Vietnamese suburb of Cabramatta in South Western Sydney for 15 years. He opened Red Lantern in a converted Sydney terrace house in 2002 with a menu featuring age-old family recipes. The authentic yet modern Vietnamese cuisine was an instant hit with diners and the restaurant quickly snapped up some of Sydney’s top industry awards. Its latest accolades include Best Asian Restaurant in the 2008 Restaurant and Catering Awards.