Tom Cunanan

Cunanan gained experience in kitchens across D.C., including Patrick Orange, La Chaumiere. Rodney Scruggs, occidental. Jose Andres, Oyamel, and Ashook Bajaj restaurants. When Cunanan’s mother was diagnosed with cancer in 2012, he worked with her to write down her recipes for Filipino cuisine, forming the basis for a catering business.

Bad Saint was recognized by Bon Appétit magazine as one of the best new restaurants in the country in 2016. Pete Wells of The New York Times gave the restaurant a three-star review, writing that “the food that Tom Cunanan and his cooks prepare under columns of wok smoke is richly compelling no matter how many prior run-ins you’ve had with Filipino food.” Eater named it one of the 38 essential restaurants in America in 2017.

After being a finalist in 2017 and 2018, Cunanan won the 2019 James Beard Award for Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic.

In June 2020, Cunanan decided to pursue his dream of becoming a restaurant owner and opened PogiBoy, with Chef Paolo Dungca, in downtown Washington, D.C. In 2022 , Paul Qui brought Cunanan on board to partner along at Soy Pinoy in Houston, TX. Along with his new vision of Filipino comfort fast casual food, Cunanan will also be opening a fine dining restaurant, Hermie’s, honoring his mother, the muse behind his culinary career.