Chef/Proprietor Soogil Lim



Born and raised in South Korea, Chef Soogil Lim was originally majoring in Biology. His interest in culinary world was sparked when he went into a restaurant and saw a sign that said “Make People Happy.” It prompted him to research culinary education and enter the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.  Upon graduation, he began his training in French cuisine at Daniel, one of New York’s most acclaimed fine dining restaurants. Through his hard work and great talent, he was able to move up the ranks and become the first Korean Sous Chef in the restaurant’s history. After working for 7 years under Chef Daniel Boulud (three as Sous Chef) and honing his French technique, he became Executive Chef at Hanjan, where he ran the kitchen for 4 years.  With the opening of his own restaurant, Chef Soogil Lim will blend the two backgrounds he knows best: French and Korean.






108 E 4Th Street,

New York, NY 10003



M-Th:  6:00pm - 11:00pm
F-Sa:  6:00pm - 12:00am
Sun:  5:30pm-10:00pm


Early in his career, Soogil Lim, a native of South Korea, switched from academia — biology — to food, and eventually graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. He became a sous-chef at Daniel, then moved on to be executive chef at Hanjan in the Flatiron district. Now he’s on his own, with a personal take on Korean food. Brussels sprouts are tossed with pan-fried tofu, peanuts and crispy seaweed; a mung bean pancake is made with sprouts, kimchi and lard; root vegetables and soy sauce accompany braised short ribs; flaked cod comes with soy-braised radish; and spicy soft tofu with assorted seafood swim in a spicy seafood broth. His intimate restaurant, seating fewer than 40, is a study in neutral tones, enlivened with art and Korean pottery: 108 East Fourth Street (First Avenue), 212-529-3704, soogil.com.




New York City: Soogil

Celebrated chef Soogil Lim (Hanjan, Daniel) will open a Korean-inspired small plates restaurant in the East Village. The menu will combine flavors from Lim’s native Korea with techniques from his French culinary background. The drink menu will use Korean spirits like soju and makkoli to update classic French cocktails.

Projected opening: January, 2018; instagram.com.


New York City’s modern Korean dining scene gets a boost today with the opening of Soogil, an East Village restaurant from Soogil Lim at 108 East 4th St., between First and Second avenues. Lim is a South Korea native with time as Daniel’s sous chef and Hanjan’s executive chef.

Combining that experience, Lim has created a menu of vegetables, meat, and seafood. Dishes in each category include sweet potato beignets with chilled white kimchi soup; spicy soft tofu flan with shrimp, squid, and manila clams in a seafood broth; and sliced pork belly with mini kimchi-radish rolls. Drinks focus on Korean spirits, wine, beer, and twists on classic French cocktails — rather than the traditional French 75 with Champagne, lemon juice, gin, and simple syrup, the French 108e has sake, Champagne, and lemon juice.

With this opening, NYC has no shortage of casual but refined Korean restaurants; Oiji and Atoboy both tidily fit into that genre, too. Soogil, with its toned-down wood and grey aesthetic, joins the mix for dinner, Monday through Thursday from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m., and Sunday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.







Three words: Spicy soft tofu.

Chant them under your breath. Whisper them to your loved ones. Just think of them for a few seconds, if your memory works well like that.

But remember those words. 

Because come time for you to try Soogil, they're the three words you must say to your waiter. Right, Soogil: that's the new modern Korean spot we're going to talk about today, and it's opening tonight in the East Village.

It's a bright, sleek-looking spot: with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking East 4th, wooden tables, and a desirable nook straight back that'll sit you and 6 of your closest Korean food-loving comrades. Come with them. Claim said nook. Start with some sake or makgeolli (their liquor license should be in within the week) before inspecting the menu crafted by Soogil Lim—a chef who, here, is combining the influence of seven years at Daniel and four years at Korean spot Hanjan. 

What that means for you: pork belly with a kimchi roll and salty shrimp sauce, braised short rib with winter vegetables and that afore-hyped soft tofu dish, which consists of tofu flan topped with shrimp, squid, manila clams, served with a gravy boat full of hot, spicy seafood broth. 

Just about everything we mentioned is right here in photo-form, if you care to check that out. Happy Tuesday.






For 6-12 guests, we reserve communal table or private inside seat with a Chef's choice prix-fixe menu at a different pricing. Due to the intimate size of our dining room, we are able to accommodate only a selected amount groups of this size each evening as business demand allows. 

For all and other group dining inquiries, including partial & full buy-out options,  

Please E-MAIL :  info.soogil@gmail.com

PLEASE NOTE: Due to our liquor license still processing, we cannot provide alcohol at our establishment. BYOB is also not permitted as it is illegal. Please bear with us, and thank you for understanding.  


Book your SOOGIL reservation on Resy


108 east 4th Street, New York, NY 10003