Minh Kiêt is a construction risk analyst, as well as a writer, photographer and professional foodie. Yes, he’s a numbers guy with a creative flair. Yes, companies will pay him to eat and take photos of their food, but don’t call him an influencer. Kiêt loves food and photography; he recently travelled to Minneapolis just to try a chicken sandwich.
Kiêt has recently returned from a trip to Japan and Vietnam with some friends and is using what he learned there to help raise money for Hogs For The Cause, a nonprofit organization fighting pediatric brain cancer.
His team, Sixteen Cracklins, is putting on ‘A Taste of Vietnam Vacation’ with a menu influenced by their travels through Tokyo and various regions of Vietnam. You can find out how to help (and taste delicious food) by going to facebook.com/sixteencracklins. You can follow Kiêt on instgram and see his amazing food photos by following @Kiet_kat. It will make you hungry.
What was your first job? I grew up helping the family with their businesses, but outside of that, my first job was being a host/greeter at Zea.
Describe a typical day in your life. My day starts with two cups of Vietnamese coffee, work, walks with my rescue puppy, gym, dining out, and an occasional date here and there.
What advice would you give the younger you? Don't be afraid to ask questions!
What event in your life most shaped who you are now? The passing of my brother and grandfather made me realize life's way too short to worry about the little things.
What values do you live by? Open-mindedness, kindness and compassion.
What do you most appreciate? Waking up everyday and having an amazing support system.
What is your favorite journey? Annual trips to Asia are fun.
Where is your favorite place to be alone? Meditation sessions
What living figure most inspires you? A Vietnamese singer/fashion designer named Bao Han.
What was the best advice you were ever given? Never settle for mediocrity.
What book would you tell everyone to read? "On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous" by Ocean Vuong or "A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain" by Robert Olen Butler.
What is the best thing about where you live? The food and culture, of course.
How do you "let the good times roll"? A gathering of friends and family with amazing food and drink.
What did you want to be when you grew up? An industrial designer.
What is your motto? Help others even when you know they can't help you back.
How would you like to be remembered? Remember the time(s) I made you smile or laugh.
What do you say to yourself when you doubt yourself? Don't **** it up!
What three things are vital to BEing YOU? Perseverance, humility and happiness.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse? What the hell? Are you going to eat that?
What is your favorite word? Prudent
What do you collect? Magnets and piggy banks from countries I visit.
What food could you live on for a month? Pupusas, tacos, and Boba Tea
What would you change about yourself? I wish I had smaller feet.
What literary, movie or cartoon character do you most identify with? Damian Leigh from "Mean Girls."
Describe yourself in five words. Humble, quirky, traveler, patient, gourmand
What is your idea of happiness? Being healthy and feeling fulfilled in multiple aspects of life.
What is your favorite movie? "Full Metal Jacket"
What music defines who you are? My playlist is pretty eclectic — I listen to anything from Hồ Ngọc Hà, Ariana Grande, to Blackpink and Kygo.
Who is your style icon? Daniel Henney
What do you most regret? I couldn't take off work to tell my grandfather goodbye.
What question do you wish I'd asked? If your last meal had to be from Lafayette, what would it be?
What would the answer be? Cheeseburger from Social Southern Table, a shrimp po-boy and fries from Olde Tyme, Charley G's gumbo, and a king cake from Keller's.