Tableside egg fried rice at Fang in San Francisco, Calif. (Photo by Lance Yamamoto)
Growing up in one of San Francisco’s Chinese food destinations wasn’t always easy. For Kathy Fang, daughter of House of Nanking founders Peter and Lily Fang, it meant a lot of late nights — but nothing could replace being surrounded by the sights and smells of Shanghai-style home cooking.
“My parents came here with less than $40 in their pocket and the first place they stepped into was Chinatown. Ever since then, Chinatown has always been our home,” Kathy said. “We literally spend more time at House of Nanking than we do at home.”
From left, Kathy Fang and Peter Fang inside Fang restaurant; little Kathy; and Peter Fang with daughter Kathy Fang outside of House of Nanking. (Photo by Lance Yamamoto; Couresty of Fang)
Since opening the restaurant at 919 Kearny in 1988, the Fang family name has become highly respected in the city’s storied food scene. Kathy not only ended up joining the family restaurant business, but she’s carved her own path in the culinary world.
On Food Network, Fang has made many appearances across popular cooking competitions such as “Beat Bobby Flay,” “Guy’s Grocery Games,” and “Alex vs. America.” She’s also a two-time “Chopped” champion.
Clockwise from center, vegetable dumplings, pork spring rolls, fried rice, spicy wonton soup, Nanking golden egg pockets and sesame chicken at House of Nanking. (Photo courtesy of Fang)
Now, Kathy and her parents are anticipating the premiere of their very own Food Network show, “Chef Dynasty: House of Fang,” airing Tuesday, Dec. 27, at 9 p.m. It’s also streaming on Discovery+. The six-episode docuseries follows Peter and Kathy’s father-daughter relationship as they operate as chefs and co-owners of the family’s second restaurant, Fang, at 660 Howard St. Kathy said the show also focuses on her push to modernize the restaurant and further expand the Fang name.
“The core of the show is the dynamic that I have with my dad and the story of how all of this came to be. Not just for people who are Asian, but any immigrant family who saw their parents toil,” Kathy said. “People, they may look at me, and they may think, ‘Oh, she’s American-born Chinese. Totally westernized. Very American.’ But, I’m like, very, very traditional, even in the relationship with my dad.” …
Published with SFGate on December 20, 2022. Read the full story here.