Her Name Is Han

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80 Good

Korean soul food in a contemporary setting. 

17 E. 31st St., New York, NY, 10016



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The lowdown

Her Name Is Han, which calls itself a Korean “soul food” restaurant, aims to bring home cooking to Koreatown. From its quirky Bedford Avenue aesthetic (a counter comprised of two vintage stoves sits underneath a turntable and a Mason jar filled with pickled vegetables) to its ambitious menu, which is split into six parts (“tapas,” mains, pots, BBQ, rice, and noodle), the restaurant delivers. The pots are excellent, flavored with gochujang and kimchee and served at the table over a small blue flame. But the barbecue is even better: One night, the fire-grilled beef, which comes with a small scallion salad, was fantastically tender and flavorful. For something vegetarian, try the rice cakes, which are crisp, sautéed lightly in yuzu sauce, and plated simply under a fan of kabocha squash. Waiters bring the food as it comes (a mung-bean pancake nearly slipped off the table to make way for a pot of seafood soup), setting a pleasantly chaotic — and definitively homey — tone.

What you need to know

Insider Tips The rare spirits of baekseju (ginseng wine) and makgeolli (creamy rice wine) are not to be missed — and not to be trifled with.

Recommended DishesSauteed rice cake with shishito pepper; kabocha; and yuzu-gochujang sauce; fire-grilled beef; mung bean, bean sprout, and pork pancake.

DrinksFull Bar, Sake/Soju

Noise LevelCivilized