Joe Kim loves it when someone comes to one of his Dae Gee Korean BBQ restaurants and truly pigs out. In fact, Dae Gee translates to “pig” in Korean, and “Pig Out” is its unofficial motto. So one of Kim’s favorite customers is Ethan Tsai. “He used to come into our first spot and really pig out,” Kim says.
Back then, Kim had only one location, in Westminster, and Tsai was still an organic chemistry professor at Metropolitan State University of Denver. Today, however, Kim owns five Dae Gees, with a sixth on the way, and is getting ready to start up a pandemic-inspired food-shipping business, while Tsai has taken his skills and his Ph.D. to Tivoli Brewing, where he is now the director of brewery operations.