Top Chef Canada alum Jinhee Lee returns to Canada to open JINBAR

There's a new Korean eatery coming to Calgary with a star chef at the helm

Jinhee Lee on the judging panel of Wall of Chefs alongside Lynn Crawford and Rob Gentile. Photo courtesy of Food Network Canada.

After spending over a year back home in Korea with family and recharging, chef Jinhee Lee has made her way back to Canada and is preparing to open her first restaurant. The Top Chef Canada season 6 alumna and current judge on Wall of Chefs shared the news on social media yesterday explaining her absence from the food scene and that she had taken time off to deal with health issues that were compromising her ability to create in the kitchen.

"During that time, I could not stop thinking about food and cooking...Now with a clear mind and a healthy body, I am pleased to announce my new project as chef/owner of JIN BAR. This is truly a dream come true," said Lee.


A post shared by Jinhee Lee (@chefjinhee) on

Though there aren't many details about the concept just yet, we know it will be a much more casual establishment than Jinhee Lee is typically known for from her previous roles at Foreign Concept and Raw Bar at Hotel Arts. The name itself, Jin, is a play on Lee's first name, but also means "true" in Korean.

"Thank you so much for your support and love over the years!You are the reason I'm back, I love you Calgary," she said.

Calgarians can expect JINBAR to open by the end of 2020. In the meantime, you can catch Jinhee Lee as a judge on the current season of Wall of Chefs which airs weekly on Food Network Canada.