MEET THE TEAM

“We love taking great care”

DONALD BERGER

General Director & Chef Patron

Donald-Berger

Donald Berger is the founding partner and the General Director as well as the Chef Patron of Don’s Bistro & Don Viet JSC based in Hanoi – the capital of Vietnam for 16 years. His international experience with fine wine, food and cigars spans 34 years focusing on quality hospitality. In 2013 don’s Bistro & Oyster Bar has been rated in the Top 50 Restaurants in Asia, and Number 1 Restaurant in Vietnam by San Pellegrino and William Reed Business Media Awards and top 10 in Vietnam by the Miele Guide. Don’s Bistro is a Hanoi icon dining and entertainment destination, located on the West Lake.  150 team members of www.dons-bistro.com conduct catering, in house dining, breakfast, lunch and dinner,  with nightly live music, 7 days a week to over 7000 satisfied guests a month including the breakfast and dinner service at Sedona Suites luxury serviced apartments.

Before don’s Bistro & Donviet JSC Donald was the founding partner and the Managing Director overseeing 250 employees of the Vine Quality Hospitality Group ISO 2200 & ISO 9001 certified, based in Hanoi – the capital of Vietnam. The Vine Group business scope that Berger was responsible for setting up included Vietnam’s first Bona Fida wine destination in the Vine Wine Boutique Bar & Café, Thai Vine, The Annex, Casa Del Habano in HCM, a country wide wine & hospitality related wholesale business, an art gallery featuring vaulted Vietnamese artist Fam Luc, an import export division, and a public relations company Grape Vine Image Consultants.  Famous brands that Berger introduced to Vietnam included Montresor, Bava, Tasca d’Almerita, Jocopoli, Nonino, Montes, Habanos, Chateau St Michele, Ironstone,  Philipponnat Champage, Schilde Estate, Oyster Bay to name a few.

Berger worked in the exciting cities of Bangkok, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Shanghai where he worked in the Ritz Carlton Hong Kong, Tokyo Capital Club and Shanghai American Club, and amassed a loyal following of crème de la crème, including Presidents, Prime Ministers, Royalty, Ambassadors, CEO’s, celebrities, artists, and top dignitaries. He was recruited to come to Vietnam to be the Executive Chef and Assistant General Manager of Hanoi Press Club where he worked for 3 years before setting out on his own business with partners.

The events created by Chef Berger have become legendary in these city’s inner circles and included the successful Great Chef’s International Wine Challenge charity events, numerous cigar and wine maker dinners, Ladies Epicurean dinners, Thai, French Italian, Irish, American, Canadian, Cuban, Austrian, Chilean, Spanish, Australian & New Zealand Dinners, wine tastings, children’s & holiday events, guided Gourmet Wine & Dine Tour De France, Gala Celebrations, and Chaine Des Rotisseur gastronomic evenings.

Chef Berger a Montreal born Red  & Gold Seal Certified Canadian International Master Chef, worked with the Ritz Carlton Group for nine years, opening the Ritz Carlton Hong Kong as Executive Chef in 2003, he was also posted with the Ritz Carltons, in Laguna Niguel California. and opened Ritz Carlton in San Francisco California.

He was responsible for organizing with the Chairman of the International Wine Challenge Robert Joseph; the annual International Wine Challenge Vietnam 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2007, co-organizing for IWC Shanghai 1999 & 2000. He also founded and organized the International Wine Challenge Shanghai Great Chef’s of Shanghai Gala Dinner 1999 & 2000, and the IWCV Gala Awards Great Chefs of Vietnam 2004 and 2007.

Donald Berger who has been active in the wine industry since 1977 where he started as a vendager in Bordeaux and Bas Armagnac has organized wine lists for don’s Bistro, Press Club Hanoi, Shanghai American Club, Ritz Carlton Hong Kong, Vine Wine Bar Boutique & Café and Viet Dang Co., Ltd wine importers Six Star Provisions (SSP) JSC wine import & distributors & Bluebird Wine JSC. He organized the culinary events for the Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel’s World of Wines festival for 3 years, for which he was grant the Award of Merit from the Escoffier Society.

A pioneer in many cities, he was also on the founding Boards of the Hanoi Chapter of Commanderier de Bordeaux, Hanoi Disciples d’ Escoffier, Hanoi Professional Chefs Club, Shanghai Chef’s Association and Shanghai Chaine de Rotisseurs as Consellier Culinare responsible for the wine program, and a member of Hong Kong Chef’s Association, American Chef’s Association, Sydney Chef’s Association.

Prior to Hanoi he was the Executive Chef in charge of Beverage at the Shanghai American Club and Tokyo Capital Club. He was with the Ritz Carlton Group for nine years, opening the Ritz Carlton Hong Kong as Executive Chef, as Executive Sous Chef of the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Laguna Niguel California and opened the Ritz Carlton in San Francisco as Opening Team Trainer Chef. Previous experiences included cooking in Monte Carlo with Alain Ducasse at Louis XV in the Hotel De Paris, Milan Italy with 3 star chef Gualtiero Marchesi, Banquet Chef at The Four Season’s Hotel in New Port Beach California, The Westin Hotel group in Hawaii at the Mauna Kea Beach Resort, The Los Angeles Century Plaza and Towers, the Westin Calgary.

He is also the Brand Ambassador of Wolf – Sub Zero the finest culinary equipment  as well as Luce wines the Super Tuscan and Brunello di Montelcino Joint Venture between Mondavi and Frescobaldi wineries.

Now 55 youthful years of age with Vietnamese wife Nguyen Thi Thuy, and son Che Long Hai Berger,  16 years of experience in Vietnam, which is now his long term base & homeland.

NGUYEN VAN TUONG

Restaurant Manger

Nguyen-van-Tuong

With Chef Don since 2001. A deep enthusiasm and experience in the Hospitality field, cheerfully directing the service with genuine smiles always, he is very meticulous. He proudly pursues the best service standards and concern for the guests, he loves this job because he enjoys the teamwork and good feedback from a job well done.

NGUYEN THI THUY

HR Manager

thuy-infront-Rest

A graduate of the Hanoi Tourism, the sweet and beautiful wife of Chef Don, manages our large  and highly skilled team by taking care to select the best people, and ensuring their benefits are well taken care of. At don’s our highest expenditure is in our human resources and given we are a service based business we highly prize team as don’s family. The Human Resources Manager and office has an open door policy where the employees can feel free to bring their concerns to management and be listened to with open heart and mind.

NGUYEN VAN TU

Executive Chef

NGUYEN-VAN-TU

Mr. Nguyễn Văn Tú is one of Hanoi’s most renowned western-trained Vietnamese chefs. Known also for his smile and genuine hospitality, he received a degree from Hanoi Tourism College and worked as a cook at Hanoi Lake View Hotel. He spent two years at the Meritus West Lake Hotel (now Sofitel Plaza Hanoi) as a cook before joining the Press Club kitchen staff as sous-chef in charge of the Deli where he first worked with Chef Donald Berger since 2000. He then followed Don to VINE Wine Boutique Bar & Café where they established Vietnam’s first ISO22000 standard restaurant, and created a wide number of gastronomic events, notably the International Wine Challenge Vietnam 2004 and 2007 gala dinners which were charity events that aided Agent Orange Victims.

At don’s Tay Ho a Chef’s Bistro, Tú heads up a kitchen staff of 40. Tú is lauded as a truly talented chef, a dedicated team player and a born kitchen leader. Tú’s repertoire of dishes extends through Vietnamese, French, Italian, American and Asian specialties and keeps the high quality standards of don’s. He is adept at creating fine cuisine and comfort food alike. Tú joined don’s for its opening in 2009.

20 years experience in culinary industry, Chairman of Hanoi Chef’s Association, Member of Escoffier Vietnam, is an International Iron Chef TV star in Vietnam and Thailand.

LE NHAT LINH

Executive Sous Chef

Le-nhat-Linh

Mr. Linh began working at Don Bistro in 2009 but also worked with Chef Don since 2003. He has a lot of experience in the international and Vietnamese culinary field, HACCP and ISO management system. Linh is very careful and devoted and the team enjoy his cheerful can do attitude both in the front of house and kitchen.

VU LE UYEN

Catering & Event Manager

Vu-Le-Uyen

Since August 2009 as catering & event manager, and with Chef Don since 2006 Uyen has acquired vast experience and a legion of faithful repeat guests. She is attractive, bright, witty, young, active, very professional, caring and hard working.  A very interesting & funny person to talk with and enjoys very much working in the food and beverage service industry.  When somebody asks why I love hospitality, I always smile and say “I enjoy taking  great care of people” .

PHAM MINH PHUONG

Assistant Manager

Pham-Minh-Phuong

Since the Press Club days when Flower Phuong worked with Chef Don, she has proven to be a natural born hospitality leader, cheerful, flexible and skilled in both Restaurant Service and Outside Catering. Her warm tranquil demeanour, huge experience makes her a much demanded event manager by many of our guests. One of her talents is flower arranging and hence her nick name Flower Phuong.

NGUYEN TIEN MANH

Musical Director

Nguyen-Tien-Manh

Nguyen Tien Manh aka (Mike) is a Vietnamese Piano Jazz artist and musical director at don’s Bistro overseeing 5 days a week of live performances by his incredibly talented students. Mike is taking the first PHD of Jazz and is an instructor at the Viet Nam National Academy Of Music, having obtained his Masters and Bachelors of performance Jazz Piano at Lund University (Malmö Academy of Music) 2003-2009, Diploma from Hanoi National Academy of Music 1995-2002.

In great demand as a pianist, Nguyen Manh has performed in many countries such as: France, Japan, Sweden, Denmark and Hong Kong, etc … with many other great Jazz musicians like: Hakan Rydin, Jan Lundgren, Mattias Horth, Johnny Aman, Per Oscar Nilsson, Chistopher Hache, Thibault Dille, Kathryn Farmer, Carl Winther…He has been received many awards from Swedish government & Vietnam Ministry of Sport, tourism and culture.

He is a Piano Jazz Lecture – Jazz Department at Viet Nam National Academy Of Music Since 2006 also guest teacher at Malmo Academy Of Music, Sweden. He is also Member of Red River Jazz Band since 2004, Member & Co- Founder of Swing international Quartet since 2009, member Jump for Jazz since 2012. In 2013, he was Invited by Viet Nam President “Mr. Trương Tấn Sang” to performed Solo Jazz Piano for Margrethe II ”The Queen of Denmark”.

HO QUANG TRUNG

Steward Manager

Ho-quang-Trung

Mr. Trung began working at Don’s Bistro in 2010. Trung is very hard working, knowledgeable, efficient. He got manager of the year award in 2012, and takes care of the Stewarding and Maintenance teams with kindness, patience and great concern.

DINH PHUONG THAI

ACC Manager

THai

Ms Thai began working at don’s in 2009. She is the first staff of Accounting department. Her role includes supervising the Purchasing and Finance. Thai has a lot of Experience at Hospitality field so she love this job because she can train herself, to gain new experience.

NGUYEN HAI VAN

Graphic Designer

Nguyen-Hai-Van

With Chef Don since 2004, she has developed a serious talent, enthusiasm and experience in Graphic Design. Graduated from Art University and with over 12 years’ experience, she’s created exciting new looks for the many don’s menus newsletter, banners, website, advertisements, and brochures. She is a proud mother and wife expecting her second child and also has a website production company.