Off the Menu: Asian America


Off the Menu: Asian America is available on DVD from the PBS online shop.

TV broadcast begins December 8, 2015. Download the TV schedule here or check your local PBS station for specific times and airdates.

Houston Asian American Pacific Islander Film Festival
June 18, 2016 5:25pm
Harmony Public School
9321 W Sam Houston Pkwy S
Houston, TX

Seattle Asian American Film Festival
Northwest Film Forum Screen 1
February 20, 2016 3pm
1515 12th Ave Seattle, WA 98122

The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
December 4, 2015 / 7pm
1001 BissonnetHoustonTexas 77005

Hawaii International Film Festival
November 14, 2015 / 6:30pm
November 22, 2015 / 12:30pm
Regal Dole Cannery Stadium 18 Theatre
735 Iwilei Road
Honolulu, HI 96817

San Diego Asian Film Festival
November 14, 2015 / 3:20pm
La Paloma Theatre
471 S. Coast Highway 101
Encinitas, CA 92024

Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival
November 10, 2015
AGO Jackman Hall

Japanese American National Museum
October 25, 2015 / 4pm
100 North Central Avenue
Los Angeles, California 90012
*Director Grace Lee and Producer Eurie Chung in attendance

Boston Asian American Film Festival
October 25, 2015 / 3pm
(check website for location)

Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU
October 16, 2015 / 7-9pm
NYU Cantor Film Center, Theater 101
36 East 8th Street
New York, NY 10003
*Director Grace Lee and Producer Eurie Chung in attendance

Dallas VideoFest
October 17, 2015 / 2pm
Angelika 8

Berkeley Food Institute, UC Berkeley
October 8, 2015 / 6pm
132 Boalt Hall, School of Law
Berkeley, CA 94703

2015 Milwaukee Film Festival
*September 30, 2015 / 3:45pm
*October 1, 2015 / 12:45pm
and October 7, 2015 / 6:45pm
Check website for location information
*Director Grace Lee in attendance

CAAM and AAJA national convention screening
August 12, 2015 / 8pm
Landmark Embarcadero Theatre
1 Embarcadero Ctr
San Francisco, CA 94111
Director Grace Lee in attendance

Asian American International Film Festival (AAIFF), presented by Asian CineVision
July 31, 2015 / 6pm
Flushing Town Hall
13735 Northern Blvd
Queens, NY 11354

Sacramento Asian Pacific Film Festival
May 30, 2015 / 1:00pm-3:45pm
The Guild Theater
2828 35th Street
Sacramento, CA 95817

Stony Brook University
May 5, 2015
Charles B. Wang Center
Long Island, NY
Director Grace Lee in attendance

Wisconsin Film Festival
April 12, 2015 11 a.m.
April 13, 2015 12:30 p.m.
Madison, Wisconsin

Asian American Showcase
April 11, 2015 / 5:45 pm
Chicago, IL

CAAMFest (World Premiere)
March 15, 2015 / 2 p.m.
San Francisco, CA
Director Grace Lee in attendance



What exactly does food reflect about Asian Pacific Americans? Off the Menu: Asian America grapples with how family, tradition, faith, and geography shape our relationship to food. The program takes audiences on a journey from Texas to New York and from Wisconsin to Hawaii using our obsession with food as a launching point to delve into a wealth of stories, traditions, and unexpected characters that help nourish this nation of immigrants.

Off the Menu is a roadtrip into the kitchens, factories, temples and farms of Asian Pacific America that explores how our relationship to food reflects our evolving community. The feature documentary is a one-hour PBS primetime special by award-winning filmmaker Grace Lee (American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs) co-produced by the Center for Asian American Media and KQED, with funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Accompanying the documentary is web content with stories about Asian Americans and food.


GRACE LEE (Director)

Grace Lee

Grace Lee directed the documentary American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs, which The Hollywood Reporter called ”an entertainingly revealing portrait of the power of a single individual to effect change.” The film premiered at the 2013 Los Angeles Film Festival where it won its first of six festival audience awards before its broadcast on the PBS series POV. Her previous documentary The Grace Lee Project won multiple awards, broadcast on Sundance Channel and was called “ridiculously entertaining” by New York Magazine and “ a funny but complex meditation on identity and cultural expectation,” by Variety.

Other directing credits include the feature film Janeane From Des Moines, which premiered at the 2012 Toronto Film Festival as well as American Zombie, which premiered at Slamdance and is distributed by Cinema Libre. Grace received her MFA in Film Directing from UCLA Film School where her short film Barrier Device, starring Sandra Oh, won a Student Academy Award. Grace returns to her alma mater and other universities frequently as a guest speaker and lecturer. She has served on many panels including the Independent Spirit Awards, POV’s EdComm and the International Documentary Association. Most recently, she produced and directed two documentaries for PBS’ Makers: Women in Politics and Off the Menu: Asian America. She lives in Los Angeles.

EURIE CHUNG (Producer)

While pursuing a graduate degree at UCLA in Asian American Studies, Eurie Chung fell into community filmmaking, directing & editing “Metro es Para Todos: Hee Pok ‘Grandma’ Kim and the Bus Riders Union,” a documentary short profiling an elderly Korean immigrant activist, for her master’s thesis. She has continued working on independent documentaries such as Life on Four Strings: The Jake Shimabukuro Story (Dir. Tad Nakamura) and American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs (Dir. Grace Lee) as well as working on studio and commercial projects for ABC/Disney, Warner Bros., and HGTV.


Tina Nguyen is a documentary editor based in Los Angeles. She worked on the feature documentary Fed Up, which premiered at Sundance and was released theatrically in 2014. She edited and co-produced Seeking Asian Female (Dir. Debbie Lum), which premiered at SXSW in 2012 and was broadcast by PBS as part of the “Independent Lens” showcase in May 2013. Her additional credits include the feature documentaries Holy Wars and Bilalian, which won awards while on the festival circuit, and the upcoming films Breathin’: The Eddy Zheng Story and Out Run.

QUYEN TRAN (Director of Photography)

Quyen Tran is an award winning cinematographer based in Los Angeles. Beginning her career as a stills photographer, her work has been published in numerous magazines and newspapers including the New York TimesUSA Today, and Scientific American. A graduate of UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and Television, her films have screened at Telluride, Sundance, Tribeca, Festroia and Toronto. Her most recent short, Smilf, won best U.S. Fiction Short at Sundance 2015. Off the Menu is her second collaboration with director Grace Lee, first partnering together on American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs.


Multi-award winning composer Ceiri Torjussen’s music was described by the Los Angeles Times as “a sudden bolt of creative lightning.” Welsh-born but based in Los Angeles, his credits run the gamut of independent films, documentaries, network TV, animation and large-budget studio films. Recent projects include The Canal, premiering at Tribeca 2014, and Big Ass Spider. He composed additional music for Repo Man, Live Free or Die and Underworld Evolution. An accomplished composer of concert music, he has been commissioned by groups such as the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, The Vale of Glamorgan Festival and the Henry Mancini Institute. His work has been recorded and released commercially and performed worldwide, including the USA, UK, Germany, France and India.

CAAM (Co-producer)

The Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to presenting stories that convey the richness and diversity of Asian American experiences to the broadest audience possible. CAAM does this by funding, producing, distributing and exhibiting works in film, television and digital media. For more information on CAAM, please visit

KQED (Co-producer)

KQED, the public media organization serving Northern California,  is for everyone who wants to be more. Our television, radio, digital media and educational services change lives for the better and help individuals and communities achieve their full potential. KQED serves the people of Northern California with a community-supported alternative to commercial media. We provide citizens with the knowledge they need to make informed decisions; convene community dialogue; bring the arts to everyone; and engage audiences to share their stories. We help students and teachers thrive in 21st century classrooms, and take people of all ages on journeys of exploration-exposing them to new people, places and ideas.


Off the Menu: Asian America
A film by Grace Lee, co-produced by the Center for Asian American Media and KQED with support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Coming December 2015 to PBS. (April, 2015)


Glen Gondo is dubbed the “sushi king” of Texas.

A menu development session with Chef Jonathan Wu of Fung Tu in New York.

Women from the Oak Creek, Wisconsin gurdwara prepare for langar, the community meal at the Sikh temple.

The Kawelos in Hawai’i use traditional Native Hawaiian food practices, such as spearing for octopus.


Please contact momo[at] with any questions.


Chinese Food and the Joy of Inauthentic Cooking (New Yorker)

New PBS Documentary Defines Asian-American Identity Through Food (NBC News)

Interview with Grace Lee, Director of ‘Off the Menu: Asian America‘ (KQED)

Off the Menu: Asian America, a Documentary by Grace Lee (KCRW’s Good Food)

Off The Menu: Realness Is A Matter Of Taste (NPR)

This program is a co-production of CAAM and KQED with Director Grace Lee. Funding is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.