TRA Young Guns: Kickoff

TRA Young Guns is the first TRA event designed for young restaurant professionals and those new to the industry. Co-hosted by two of Houston’s most visionary restauranteurs, join your fellow Young Guns at for two hours of #realtalk, local craft beer, and connections that you’ll lean on as you traverse this industry. The TRA Young Guns series is hosted at a location off the show floor at the George R Brown Convention Center. 

Sponsored by #FairKitchens


Sunday, July 14, 2019


2:00pm - 2:30pm


TRA Young Guns Stage (Level 2, Mezzanine B)


Thomas Nguyen, Peli Peli Restaurant Group
Nicole Bean, Pizaro's Pizza Napoletana


Thomas Nguyen

Thomas Nguyen

Thomas Nguyen is a co-founder of Peli Peli, a South African fine-dining concept top-rated in Houston on both Tripadvisor and Yelp, and Peli Peli Kitchen, a South African fast casual concept that was named Eater Houston's Fast Casual Concept of 2017. 

Thomas was featured on season 3 of CNBC's Restaurant Startup. An alum of the University of Texas at Austin and University of Texas School of Law, Thomas practiced for three years as a litigation attorney. While at UT, Thomas helped found Omega Phi Gamma, currently the largest Asian-interest fraternity in Texas.

Thomas is a 2019 Golden Fork Faces of Diversity Award Recipient (Greater Houston Restaurant Association), 2015 Houston Business Journal 40 Under 40 recipient, 2016 Houston Asian Chamber of Commerce Entrepreneur of the Year and 2016 & 2017 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist.

Nicole Bean

Nicole Bean

Nicole Bean is the President of Pizaro’s Pizza Napoletana in Houston, Texas. She was born and raised in Houston and currently owns and operates two pizzeria locations with her family. She has 7 years experience in Napoletana pizza making (trained by her father who was certified with Pepe Miele in 2010). After 3 years in the industry, she went to The International School of Pizza with Tony Gemignani in San Francisco to study American style pizzas. Since certification with the school Nicole serves 3 styles of pizzas: Napoletana, Detroit and New York styles at both locations. “My focus is to create and maintain authenticity of each medium of pizza as they are specific to their region.”

Nicole has competed in pizza competitions in Las Vegas at the International Pizza Expo and The Northeast Pizza and Pasta show in Atlantic City since 2017 and will be traveling to Parma, Italy in 2019 for the World Pizza Championship competition.