Ming's love of cooking (as well as eating) was forged in his early years. Ming was raised in Dayton, Ohio, where he spent hours cooking alongside his mother and father at Mandarin Kitchen, the family-owned restaurant. His experience also taught him about restaurant operations and the art of making customers happy.
Ming headed east to attend school at Phillips Academy Andover. From there, Ming continued to Yale University, earning his degree in Mechanical Engineering. During this time, Ming spent his summers at Le Cordon Bleu cooking school in Paris. After graduating from Yale, Ming moved to Paris and trained under renowned Pastry ChefPierre Herme and then on to Osaka with Sushi Master Kobayashi.
Upon his return to the United States, Ming enrolled in graduate school at Cornell University, earning a Master’s degree in Hotel Administration and Hospitality Marketing.
In 1998, Ming opened Blue Ginger in Wellesley, MA and immediately impressed diners from Boston and beyond with the restaurant's innovative East-West cuisine. In its first year, Blue Ginger received 3 stars from the Boston Globe, was named "Best New Restaurant" by Boston Magazine, and was nominated by the James Beard Foundation as "Best New Restaurant 1998". That same year, Esquire Magazine honored Ming as "Chef of the Year". The James Beard Foundation crowned Ming "2002 Best Chef Northeast" and, since 2002, the Zagat Restaurant Guide has rated Blue Ginger within the "Top 5 of Most Popular Boston Restaurants". In 2007, Blue Ginger received the Ivy Award from Restaurants & Institutions for its achievement of the highest standards in food, hospitality and service. In 2009, Ming and Blue Ginger won IFMA's Silver Plate Award in the Independent Restaurant category recognizing overall excellence in the country. Most recently in November 2012, Boston Magazine ranked Blue Ginger as one of The 50 Best Restaurants.
In early 2013, Ming opened Blue Dragon, his new 80 seat Asian gastro pub located in the Fort Point Channel area of Boston. Blue Dragon is a comfortable, neighborhood place to simply hang out, have a drink and enjoy some incredible food. The tapas-style menu adds Ming's East West twist to many pub favorites. The bar is well-stocked with a number of craft beers, worldly wines, premium sakes and signature cocktails. Blue Dragon has already been listed as one of Zagat's "24 new restaurants you need to know about around the US."
Ming is a national spokesperson for the Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE), and is proud to have developed the Food Allergy Reference Book. First used at Blue Ginger, the Reference Book is a pioneering system that creates safeguards to help food-allergic people dine safely. For four years, Ming worked with Massachusetts Legislature to help write Bill S. 2701, which was signed into law in 2009. This groundbreaking legislation, the first of its kind in the US, requires local restaurants to comply with simple food allergy awareness guidelines.
In 2012, Ming was invited by Secretary of State, The Honorable Hillary Clinton, to represent the U.S. with the Diplomatic Culinary Partnership Initiative/American Chef Corps. The Chef Corps is a network of chefs from around the country that participate in a number of official government programs that use food as a foundation for public diplomacy efforts at home and abroad.
Ming is the host and executive producer of the public television cooking show, SIMPLY MING. In 2009, SIMPLY MING received two Emmy nominations for 'Outstanding Culinary Program' and 'Outstanding Lifestyle/Culinary Host,' and received two Bronze Telly Awards in the categories of 'Lighting' and 'Art Direction.' His SIMPLY MING video podcasts, the first of their kind, feature tutorials on everything from filleting fish to food allergy basics (available on ming.com and iTunes). Ming began cooking for television audiences on the Food Network, where he was the 1998 Emmy Award-Winning host of East Meets West with Ming Tsai. Ming's Quest, his popular cooking adventure series, also aired on Food Network. In the summer of 2008, Ming traveled to the Beijing Olympics with NBC’s Today show to provide viewers with insight into food customs and traditions that define his Chinese heritage.
In addition to television, Ming is the author of five cookbooks: Blue Ginger: East Meets West Cooking with Ming Tsai, Simply Ming, Ming's Master Recipes, and Simply Ming One-Pot Meals and Simply Ming In Your Kitchen.
Ming is a proud member of Common Threads and the Harvard School of Public Health's Nutrition Round Table. His other favorite charities include Big Brothers Big Sisters, The Cam Neely Foundation, Family Reach Foundation and Squashbusters.
See how Ming's Blue Ginger has impressed diners from Boston and beyond with cuisine that harmoniously combines the East and the West.