Huy is one of Saigon’s most famous sommeliers and began his career in 2013 working with the highly-respected Australian wine and food expert Jim Cawood at his restaurant Lubu in Thao Dien.
Huy’s journey towards becoming a sommelier of great repute all started when a Western guest at Lubu asked him a tricky question.
Huy had recommended a nice bottle of Portuguese red wine when the gentleman asked him if the wine was most suitable to Vietnamese or Western tastes. Huy struggled to answer this question that night, but resolved to develop his wine knowledge and become a wine sommelier working to international standards.
Having been voted as Vietnam’s Sommelier of the Year in 2017, it's very rare now that a question about a wine and its pairing could fluster him.
Indeed, Huy has represented two of Vietnam’s most famous wine importers during his career, firstly with the Wine Warehouse, and now as the wine shop manager for Red Apron, which is owned by Celliers D’Asie.
Huy’s status is also confirmed by the very active role he takes in developing the Saigon Sommeliers Association with his long time friend Tu Le Huy and co-founder Le Hoang Khanh Vi.
He believes that the key to great service is about being conscious and about being aware of what a guest may be feeling or thinking and responding accordingly.
One of Huy's favourite quotes is:"Penicillin cures but wine makes people happy” – Alexander Fleming
Like asking a film director to nominate their favourite movie of all time, asking Huy what his favourite wine is, is a tough question to answer indeed, especially for someone with such an extensive knowledge and understanding of wine.
As expected, Huy is also a gastronome and loves Mediterranean food thanks to his time at Lubu and, of course, Vietnamese food, most notably bun mam, cao lau and a banh mi when he's in a hurry. – Chris Thompson