Uno Immanivong is the chef and owner of Red Stix Street Food, Visionary of Chef Uno Brands & Catering, and board member at Ashford Inc (NYSE: AINC) and Chef’s Collective member for Schwan’s.
She has a 16-year career in financial services working for Fortune 100 & 500 institutions. Among her achievements, she lists opening a financial services call center in Tampa, helping develop a service enhancement software for new starters, training a call center team in India, up-skilling over 1,000 Representatives world-wide and leading up to 9 direct reports. A first-generation Asian American, Uno Immanivong was born in a refugee camp in Thailand, run by the United Nations Organization (UNO), for which she was named. Her parents, having fled their native Laos, dreamed of giving her a better life. Working three jobs, they encouraged Uno to get an education and a profession; as a result, she flourished in her banking career. Yet she dreamed of nourishing people with food.
Uno had learned to cook mostly from her mom, who kept an overgrown garden that provided for the family table, and who catered Lao weddings to make ends meet. In 2012, Uno auditioned for “The Taste,” a reality cooking show with Anthony Bourdain. Bourdain chose Uno to mentor on his team. The life-changing experience empowered her to pursue her passion. That year she left banking and opened her first restaurant.
Hugely popular, Chino Chinatown quickly became known for its duck fat fried rice, which the Dallas Morning News raved about in a review and which was celebrated in Southwest: The Magazine. Chino was nominated for Best New Restaurant 2014 by CultureMap Dallas, and its ramen was named best in the city by the Dallas Observer. In 2017 Uno debuted Red Stix Asian Street Food in Legacy Hall; in 2019 she opened another location, near Southern Methodist University. CultureMap nominated Red Stix for Best New Restaurant 2020, and in 2021 Thrillist called out Red Stix’s Damn Damn Noods as one of the 28 Most Essential Food Experiences. Red Stix — in Farmer’s Branch — will open in 2021. Uno’s portfolio also includes Chef Uno Brands and Chef Uno Catering. The latter was founded during the Covid-19 pandemic, when Uno partnered with several nonprofits to serve more than 100,000 meals. Chef Uno Catering earned special recognition from Parkland Hospital for nourishing its team.