Rising star chef Angela Dimayuga says in a new profile that many of the things that made Mission Chinese popular were made in her image — from the hallmark Twin Peaks-themed bathroom to the bread service.
In the profile, the chef — who left the eclectic LES restaurant last month — takes credit for much of the menu, vibe, and sensibility that turned Mission into what it is. Dimayuga helped open the original New York location, and she claims she reworked flagship dishes like the Chongqing chicken wings and kung pao pastrami. Other popular dishes, like the Josefina’s house special chicken and green tea noodles, were her creations as well, she says.
Beyond that, touches like pink and jade settings and that much-talked-about bathroom with Laura Palmer also stemmed from her, Dimayuga adds. “Mission Chinese feels like me,” she tells Eater. “But it's me doing the best version of what I thought Mission in San Francisco could become.”
Mission’s chef-owner Danny Bowien, who’s risen to fame for the idiosyncratic restaurant, did not respond to multiple requests for comment from Eater. Mission Chinese is still open and soon will expand to Bushwick, though that Josefina’s house special chicken is no longer on the menu.
Still, Dimayuga doesn’t think the inherent “queer” values of Mission will go away now that she’s gone, saying that Bowien won’t let things “crumble.”
As far as what’s next for Dimayuga, although the chef was going to open her own restaurant or become a partner at some point, it didn’t happen soon enough. Now, her next project will be a cookbook. “I don’t aspire to be one of these chef gods,” she says of her goals. “There's a community that I want to build and I want to seek out bettering this industry in my own way.”