Jennifer Maeng has been involved in the New York culinary scene since 2003 when she opened her own restaurant, Temple Restaurant, in the East Village at the age of 21. It was one of the first Korean restaurants in New York that aimed to cater to Koreans and Americans alike. During its six year run on St. Mark's, Temple Restaurant was profiled over 50 times by various publications including The New York Times, New York magazine, and Time Out magazine.
She has since established herself as an active and high profile member of the Korean community, continuing to add her unique personal charm to all of her endeavors. Born in Seoul, Jennifer moved to New York at the age of 12, but never lost touch with her roots. She was constantly surrounded by Korean family members and friends, which inspired a passion for her homeland's cuisine at a young age.
Jennifer's passion for Korean culture extends beyond her own restaurant. In 2004, she collaborated with the South Korean Department of Agriculture to host numerous media events, promoting Korean food and beverages for three consecutive years. In 2006, she was a winner of the Miss Korea New York Pageant. All of these accomplishments align with her longer-term goal of helping Korean food and heritage integrate into mainstream American culture. Jennifer currently resides in New York City.