The Pre-Shift Podcast presented by 7shifts breaks down everything you’ve ever wanted to know about running a restaurant better. Conversations with some of the biggest names, newest players, and industry innovators bring key insights into how they grew their businesses. Host DJ Costantino asks probing questions to get to know restauranteurs, chefs, and executives better and find out where they came from, how they got to where they are, and what lessons they learned along the way.
On this episode, we’re joined by Eric Huang, Owner of Pecking House
Eric Huang grew up in a Chinese-American restaurant in New York, a very common tale in the Chinese diaspora. He is an amateur cellist turned subpar college student turned chef. Despite investing many years and taking on crushing student debt to become a college-educated professional, he would return to work in restaurants because that’s where he felt most at home. He has been cooking in New York City for the last decade, honing his craft at Michelin-starred institutions such as Cafe Boulud, Gramercy Tavern and most recently as a sous chef at Eleven Madison Park. His dream was to open his own restaurant that would challenge the Western world’s prejudices against Chinese cuisine, but he encountered a minor obstacle in the spring of 2020. With his family’s restaurant, Peking House, shuttered due to the pandemic, he stepped in to do what he could and started frying chicken and delivering it to New Yorkers trapped in their apartments. This became wildly more successful than anyone planned on it being and thus Pecking House was born. He is now a fried chicken dealer in a restaurant landscape figuring out its direction in the wake of the pandemic. He has fully embraced the fast-casual restaurant life because it's fun, it’s tasty and you can put food on disposable plates.
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Host & Executive Producer: D.J. Costantino
Editor: Fina Charleston
Producer: Samantha Fung
Designer: Jake Sinclair