KIMBERLY NGUYEN, Restauranteur with a sweet closet.
PHOTOS BY: HIEN NGUYEN
Location: Montrose Shop
1723 Westheimer Road.
Houston, Texas 77098
I had a little chat with her the other day about her story as I find these self-made tales to be super interesting and inspiring!
1. How did you get started? What's your come up story?
My favorite saying is if Donald Trump doesn’t sleep, then I don’t need to! After saving money and taking out a small loan, I purchased my first restaurant in Houston about 6 years ago. It was my first big investment in the food industry after helping my family in their restaurants. It was a small banh mi restaurant in the bustling Bellaire neighborhood, popular for cheap Asian food. The foot traffic was already there so I decided to capitalize on it. Shortly after, I acquired another restaurant and poured those profits into bringing a contemporary Vietnamese concept to Magazine Street in New Orleans. We were the very first ones to create a new environment with authentic Vietnamese food in the uptown area. This was nearly four years ago, and we’ve been fortunate to have loyal and frequent visitors. My passion is business, and now I am venturing into new arenas with a new juice bar called The Pressery in New Orleans and a lifestyle concept store, Montrose Shop, back in Houston.
2. What pushes you everyday to be better, create bigger, and take it above and beyond?
I’ve always stayed true to myself. Staying humble is key so you are able to grow and develop. There will always be others doing things bigger and better, but it’s important to stay humble. This enables you to concentrate and focus. It’s what has allowed me to develop restaurants and other businesses.
3. Why do I call you Kimberly when your name is Kim?
I don’t know! You tell me. :) // My response: Kimberly is muchhhh more sophisticated duh! lol
4. What is your biggest accomplishment thus far?
The most rewarding thing for me in all of this is seeing my family, friends, and colleagues grow with me and being able to provide job opportunities for them. Their success is my success. Seeing my brother run Magasin, a long-time friend become a partner in Montrose, and my family’s recipes become our customer’s favorites – that’s definitely my biggest accomplishment.
5. Any advice for the aspiring entrepreneur?Face your fears. Be a risk taker. Use your money wisely. Even if you don’t have money, work for it and invest. It’s a win-win situation either way – you'll push yourself and learn a great deal.