Ala Luke, along his father (Chu-Yen Luke), had a vision. They wanted to make it possible for people to enjoy quality, authentic oriental cuisine from the comfort of their own homes. They recognized that there was a market for people who wanted to enjoy their favorite dishes, without experiencing all the hassles associated with dining out. To make this a reality, there needed to be an outlet that provided recipes and the necessary ingredients. With this idea, Wok Fusion was born.
As the co-founder, Ala is responsible for establishing the company infrastructure. He oversees daily operations and implements company strategy. With his strong technology background, Ala is focused on handling the technical aspects of the organization so that the transition from store to website is as seamless as possible. He is excited to bring on his technology background and merging it with his passion on eating and learning of Asian food.
A true academic at heart, Ala completed his undergraduate studies at B.S. Bradley University and earned a M.S. from DePaul University. Further, he has completed graduate coursework from Keller Graduate School of Management..
With his invaluable knowledge and experience, Ala will make Wok Fusion the world premiere service provider for Asian themed cuisine.
Chu-Yen is the Luke family patriarch. He is the glue that holds the operation together, and the resident chef.
Armed with a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology, Chu-Yen entered the workforce as an electrical engineer. Before long, he could no longer resist his calling. What was the point of working passionately for something he was not passionate about? So he made the decision to follow his heart, and became a culinary artist. It turns out he made the right call.
With his chosen career path, Chu-Yen has contributed greatly to communities in Rogers Park, Chinatown, and the greater Chicago-land area. In December of 1971 Chu-Yen, along with his wife Pansy, formed the Oriental Food Market on the North side of Chicago. The market catered to the cuisine of oriental nationals that were virtually ignored by traditional supermarkets. The products and services they supplied were so well received, that they even began teaching cooking classes in the market. Once word spread that the quality of instruction at the classes were so good, Chu-Yen’s classes were being recognized by the media. Most notable of these were Newsweek, United Airlines publications, and Travel and Leisure Magazine. Chu-Yen and Pansy even worked as consultants for the Better Homes and Garden magazine and developed a book titled “The Oriental Cookbook”. They were so successful, that they were offered the opportunity to teach at a variety of institutions including at the “Taste of Chicago”, Wright College, and Niles West High School. This success was only the beginning, as they would eventually become top advisors for food at Beatrice and Kraft Foods, and, soon after, the exclusive wholesaler to the “Down Under” restaurant located in the lower level of Marshall Field’s in downtown Chicago. Ultimately, Chu-Yen and Pansy capitalized on their exposure by introducing “Pansy’s Low Sodium Soy Sauce”, which is distributed nationally across the U.S.
In 2002, after years of hard work and devotion, Chu-Yen and Pansy Luke decided that it was finally time to retire (although they continue to teach classes), and they closed the Oriental Food Market and Cooking School (which was opened in 1981 as the demand for Chu-Yen’s classes continued to rise). However, they were adamant that their dream and legacy live on. To make sure of this, the Luke family launched Wok Fusion in 2005. The goal was simple: to transform the Oriental Food Market into a nationally recognized brand of Asian cuisine that was available on-line.
Chu-Yen’s expertise in Asian culinary is a significant contribution, as he has personally tested and created all of the recipes used at Wok Fusion through his outstanding career at Oriental Food Market.