After much deliberation by an expert panel of five judges, Chef Luu Meng was honoured by ABC’s ‘The Exceptional’ Campaign for his contributions to Cambodian society.
At a jubilant showcase evening last month, Thalias founding-director, the inspiration behind Malis restaurant’s success and energetic promoter of Cambodian cuisine around the world, Chef Luu Meng was honoured by ABC’s ‘The Exceptional’ Campaign for his contributions to Cambodian society.
The ABC ‘The Exceptional’ Award was created by the makers of ABC Stout last year in order to celebrate the achievements of ten individuals across five industries: music, art, business, e-sports and culinary. The aim is to inspire and empower a new generation of Cambodians to define the terms of their own success. The other Award winners this year were Chef Pol Kimsan, film producer Neang Kavich, documentary maker Chum Sothea, entrepreneur Chea Langda, musician and festival-founder Rithy Lomorkesor, and fashion designers Nat Soknan and Van Natacha.
In addition to his award, Chef Meng also received $20,000 which he has pledged will go towards creating fund-raising events that give back to the community.
“I was not prepared to get this prize,” said Chef Meng at the event. “So whatever I have received, I will make it bigger, to give back to the people who need it. I will work with our team to raise funds to give back to the community and we will discuss where to distribute the money to. We will make sure this award is given back in a bigger and bigger way so that it can create a good example for younger people”.
Chef Meng, who created an ABC-Stout infused menu for the evening, was visibly surprised but delighted by the award and said he was humbled to share the company of the other Exceptional awardees. “[They] have endured hardships and overcome challenges with determination to get to where they are today,” he said. “They have certainly inspired me, and I’m sure they will inspire many young adult Cambodians to pursue their dreams and overcome adversity to co-create an even better Cambodia together”.
During a previous interview with the team behind the ABC ’The Exceptional’ Campaign, Chef Meng had some solid advice for young Cambodians who wish to pursue a career in hospitality. “Please be yourself and make sure this is the right career that you love to be a part of… As long as you work hard on what you love, sooner or later you will master it, and remember to be kind to people along the way”.
Our heartfelt congratulations to Meng and all of the Exceptional winners of this year’s awards. True leaders and inspirations for us all.