8. Thursday Kitchen, Korean-Spanish

You may know East Village’s Thursday Kitchen on 424 East 9th Street as the place that serves Capri-Sun cocktails (and for the impressive line that forms before it opens). But it’s much more than that: its chef and owner, Kyungmin Kay Hyun, has a passion for worldwide cuisines and the cultural relationships between foods of different regions. With her South Korean background, love for Spanish food and training in French cuisine, Kay Hyun gave birth to Thursday Kitchen.

The immensely popular restaurant specializes in what Kay Hyun calls “New Korean” cuisine, offering Korean dishes with a European twist, and done in tapas fashion. Must-tries include the Kimchi Paella and Spicy Pulled Pork Tacos with smoky gochujang, pickled pineapple, hazelnut crumbles, and scallions.