Chef Niki Vongthong started cooking with her mother back in 1984 as a child at their grocery store/restaurant Asia Market. Having parents from Northeast Thailand (Issan) and being born in Laos, she grew up with the most underrated cuisine, (mainly consisting of sticky rice with funky, fresh, and spicy food). While still having the passion to pursue a career in the culinary arts, this passion led her to gaining an education from Alain Marie Lenotre Culinary School.
Now with her personal and professional experience, she’s set out to learn more about cooking different cuisines of the world. Garnering an externship in Andalusia afforded Chef Niki the opportunity to travel to the Spanish cities of Granada, Seville, and Cádiz as well as to Morocco and Paris, France. Returning to Houston in 2012, Niki was chosen to be a member of the opening crew of the acclaimed Uchi Houston. She worked there as sushi chef/kitchen chef for almost six years before moving on to assist in the opening of Aqui in Montrose as Executive Sous Chef.
Chef Niki was soon given the opportunity to live and work in Thailand where she was immersed in her own culture. She also assisted in opening an omakase and took over as Head Chef 6 months later, focusing on Thai and Japanese fish. She was once again able to travel the continent, exploring places like Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Japan, Korea, and Laos.
She is now back in Houston leading Hidden Omakase as Executive Chef curating a mix of her background, a love for Japanese cuisine and travel influences.