Incubated at Yale Entrepreneurial Institute and first opened in 2015, junzi grew out of a hunger for our childhood staples: northern Chinese food made with healthy, seasonal ingredients.
Yet recreating the taste of home has done much more than sate our cravings—the amazing power of food in building community has inspired us to make our bings and noodles accessible to all.
In just three years, we’ve grown junzi to four locations in New Haven, CT near Yale University, Morningside Heights near Columbia University, Greenwich Village near NYU and Bryant Park in Midtown Manhattan—and that’s just the beginning!
In Chinese philosophy, a junzi 君子 is a person with integrity. Being a junzi is a pursuit: it means to be honest, kind, open to new ideas, and above all, the best version of ourselves. This is the guiding principle for everything we do: from how we make our food to how we relate to the world.
Lucas Sin opened his first restaurant when he was 16, in an abandoned newspaper factory in his hometown of Hong Kong. Despite spending his Yale undergraduate years in the Cognitive Science and English departments, Lucas spent his weekends running restaurants out of his dorm, known as Y Pop-up. He backpacked and cooked his way through Japan, before settling at Kikunoi Honten in Kyoto. He’s also spent time at Modernist Cuisine in Seattle and Michelin-starred kitchens in Hong Kong and New York.
Beyond the bings and noodles at Junzi Kitchen, Lucas also directs the funkier, more indulgent After Hours menu: fried chicken, instant noodles, juicebox cocktails, and the like. His monthly personal project is a no-longer-secret, collaborative tasting menu exploring the narrative of contemporary Chinese cuisine, which we call Chef’s Table.