Three years ago, Hannah and Marian Cheng started serving their mom’s dumpling recipe to open arms and hungry stomachs throughout the East Village. After growing up on hand-wrapped dumplings filled with local, organic ingredients, the sisters were shocked to discover the same quality wasn’t available at dumpling shops in the city.
Seeing a gap in the market, they happily trade in roles at and J.P. Morgan and Burberry for the cause. Now, Mimi Cheng’s Dumplings has expanded to a second location in Nolita and Hannah is looking forward to what’s next.
What’s keeping you up at night right now?
Hannah: The universe. Basically everything and anything. One of those things that you stay up until one o’clock looking at puppy memes and then you’re wide awake.
What do you wear to sleep?
Hannah: I usually wear a white t-shirt and a pair of pajama shorts. Not very exciting. I used to wear these 10-year-old Hanes V-neck t-shirts and my fiancé told me to get rid of them! I said, “I’ve been in a relationship with them longer than I have been with you!”
Go-to late night snack?
Hannah: I usually try to have fruit. Last night I had strawberries, but that didn’t cut it so I had avocado toast [too]! I try not to eat anything too heavy that would keep me up when I’m trying to go to bed.
Last thing you do before going to sleep?
Hannah: I watch a lot of pitbull videos. I don’t know why, but pitbulls eating peanut butter is fascinating, mesmerizing!
What is your bedtime ritual?
Hannah: I love drinking a cup of herbal tea. It makes you feel warm and cozy, but there’s no caffeine.
How many hours of sleep do you get a night?
Hannah: Usually I sleep about 7 hours a night.
Last dream you remember?
Hannah: They are usually horrifying. I can’t remember my last dream, but I can tell you my most vivid dream! It was very strange. A guy that I used to work with [was] dressed up as Santa Claus and he was trying to take all my clients. For some reason, we had to climb up this really, really tall totem pole. And it was just the two of us racing to the top, so when we get to the top, we’re trying to push each other off. I looked it up. Santa was kind of random, but that dream actually isn’t negative. It meant that success was coming my way because when you fall from a great height, it means you’re falling into something new.
First thing you do when you get out of bed?
Hannah: I drink a full glass of water. My body has been breathing in and out for 7 hours and lost a lot of water, so the first thing I always do is rehydrate! A lot of people don’t realize that when they’re dehydrated, they get headaches, feel sluggish, and their mind feels kind of cloudy. One of my friends who’s a professional athlete told me that’s one of the most important things to do!
What makes you WANT to get out of bed?
Hannah: There’s so much stuff to do! I’m a morning person, so I love waking up early when the city feels really quiet. It feels like the world is yours. I like to work out first thing in the morning too because you don’t have an excuse about feeling tired and you already feel accomplished!
What else do you do in your bed besides sleep?
Hannah: I actually don’t use my bed for anything else. I think it’s super important to keep your bed space sacred. That way, your mind makes you ready to sleep when[ever] you’re in your bed. It’s part of the shutting down process.
What gives you energy throughout the day?
Hannah: Getting a good night’s rest is really important because we’ve all been there when you haven’t slept enough hours and you’re crabby. [It makes you] less patient with people, which is really tough when you work in the hospitality industry. I [also] drink a lot of matcha. Just loving what I do everyday keeps me going!
What’s your relationship with your electronics? Do they sleep with you?
Hannah: I always turn my phone on night mode, so if people text me it doesn’t wake me up, but if I get a call it comes through because I’m always nervous about an emergency at one of my two restaurants.
What do you want to be when you wake up?
Hannah: Myself. Owning more restaurants with my sister.
What city do you sleep in?
Hannah: My name is Hannah Cheng and I sleep in New York City!
This interview has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity.
The views, opinions, and positions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or positions of Tomorrow Sleep LLC, its affiliates or their employees.