Danny Bowien was born in Seoul, South Korea and adopted at the age of three months by an American family. Raised in Oklahoma City, he originally thought music would be his career path until a sudden band break-up prompted him to move to San Francisco and attend culinary school at the age of 19. Over the next decade Danny worked for several restaurants in San Francisco and New York City, leading him on unexpected adventures like winning the 2008 World Pesto Championship in Genoa, Italy. in 2010 after experimenting with some wildly successful street food pop-ups in San Francisco’s mission district, Mission Chinese Food opened as a pop-up project inside of a nondescript Chinese take out restaurant.
Danny moved to New York City in 2012 and opened the first stand alone Mission Chinese Food location in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. In 2013 he was awarded the James Beard Award for Rising Star Chef of the Year. Since relocating down the street in 2014, Mission Chinese Food has earned its place as a go-to New York staple that challenges fine dining traditions with its bold aesthetic and tastes. In October of 2018, He opened a second Mission Chinese Food located in Brooklyn. Danny’s eclectic taste in music, cutting edge fashion, and art is apparent in his work and personal style. He plays drums in NARX!, a band he formed with friends & emo music giants Geoff Rickly and Chris Conley.