Thomas Nguyen

Restaurant Practice Leader – Houston

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Professional Experience

Associated Office


2800 Post Oak Blvd
Suite 225
Houston, Texas 77056

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Prior to joining Brian Ashby and Sydney Dixon’s team, Thomas spent three (3) years as a commercial litigation attorney and eleven (11) years as the co-founder of the Peli Peli South African restaurant chain.

Peli Peli was one of Houston’s most beloved and best-reviewed restaurants and has been featured on the Food Network and CNBC’s Restaurant Startup. In 2017, Peli Peli Kitchen was named Best Fast Casual Concept of the Year (Eater Houston). 

Thomas currently works with some of Houston and Austin’s best known brands including Bombshells, Jinya Ramen, Paris Baguette, Food Network Star Eddie Jackson, 2022 Restaurant of the Year - Amrina, Chi’lantro BBQ, Acclaimed international Asian hospitality group - Dining Innovation Group, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Ice House, 2022 James Beard nominee Phat Eatery, The Waffle Bus, Fat Boy’s Pizza, PKL Social/FM Kitchen, Food & Wine Best New Pastry Chef Shawn Gawle, ChopnBlok, Wakefield Crowbar, and many others.

Active in the Houston community, Nguyen has earned recognition as a 2015 Houston Business Journal 40 Under 40 honoree, 2016 Houston Asian Chamber of Commerce Entrepreneur of the Year, 2017 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist, 2017 Texas Exes Distinguished Alumni nominee and 2018 Golden Fork Faces of Diversity Recipient (Greater Houston Restaurant Association). Thomas wrote the cover story for and was featured in the article “So you want to open a restaurant” – Houston Press, October 2016 and has contributed to articles for Forbes, Inc., Costco Connection, Success Magazine, Sparq Business IQ (Capital One) and OpenTable blogs.

He earned a B.A. in Journalism from The University of Texas at Austin and a J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law.