2021 Sunday Tea with David Fong’s Restaurant
by Stephanie Pomonis
While COVID has restricted our activities since the first Sunday Tea in 2020, we are pleased to have the opportunity to become more active. We are especially excited with the reprise of our Sunday Tea Series.
Our current series is the “History of the Chinese Restaurant Business in the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area” and so far, have held 2 Sunday Teas:
Our 1st tea featured a discussion, facilitated by Greg Hugh, with members of the David Fong Family: Ed Fong; Cindy and Leo Le; and David Fong Jr; The discussion chronicled the more than 60 years the family has been involved in the community and the evolution of the Fong family name and restaurants.
David Fong Sr.’s children shared the roots of their family’s restaurants began in 1944 when their great grandfather, who was living in Chicago, purchased the Moy Café in Minneapolis. 4 years after purchasing the café, their great grandfather returned to China to bring his wife and family to Minnesota.
The next chapter started in 1958 when David Sr. and his wife wanted to open a small take-out restaurant in Richfield. Although they were looking for a location in Richfield, they got lost and ended up in Bloomington when they came across a “for rent” sign at 98th and Lyndale. It was at his location where they opened David Fong’s restaurant, which became one of the longest continuous operating restaurants in the Twin Cities and where patrons who had moved away from MN requested the restaurant ship them some of their favorite dishes.
Eddie, David Sr.’s son, commented that throughout his life, David Sr. said that he has always lucky. But Eddie says that his father earned his success by being honest with the people he met in his life and giving back to the people and community. Their success, Eddie stressed, is based on giving back – a tradition the family continues to honor at all of their locations.
The presentation concluded with a cooking demonstration by Eddie who prepared one of his delicious signature dishes: New York Steak Chinatown. Those who attended in person were treated to a sample of this wonderful dish.