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Ho Sum Bistro

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We Went to a ‘Califoriental’ Restaurant Owned By a White Guy And It’s Exactly As You’d Expect

Clean eating and white-washing of traditional ethnic foods seems to be the latest fad, with Andrew Zimmern’s “Lucky Cricket”, Gordon Ramsay’s “Lucky Cat”, and Arielle Haspel’s “Lucky Lee’s” popping up claiming to serve authentic Asian cuisine but with a healthier twist. Honestly I applaud these three restaurateurs and their very “lucky” establishments, it takes a special kind of arrogance to open an “authentic” Asian restaurant with no Asian staff members while claiming to be a “cleaner” and “healthier” alternative to traditional counterparts run by immigrant families.

While this theme of cultural appropriation through food is clearly very popular for entrepreneurs, there’s one restaurant in Orange County, California that has been on this trend since 1987 — far before it was considered mainstream.