The Corner Place is renowned for its cold noodles. Supposedly the recipe for their broth is such a secret that you’re not even allowed to take your leftovers home (although the sign to that effect was missing), which could be a problem since the bowls are HUGE. I shared mine with one of my fellow diners (lunchers? it was lunch), which made it a reasonable-sized portion. The noodles plus very tender kalbi plus the panchan made it a good meal. I don’t think I would have wanted to have just the noodles. It would have been a little too one-note.
But let me not get ahead of myself. These cold noodles aren’t made of buckwheat. I don’t know what they’re made of, but in Korean they’re called 동치미 국수 (I think that’s right; I copied it down real fast from the menu). They’re white instead of dark. The flavor is subtle. I’m sure someone is going to tell me noodles in general don’t have much flavor, but trust me, they do. I think it’s a combination of look, texture and the actual flour they’re made of. These were subtle and had what I want to call a soft flavor. Okay, I’m reaching because they’re hard to describe, I admit it. But I liked them. Better than the buckwheat? No, I can’t say that. Just different.
One quibble I had with the noodle dish as a whole was that it was mostly noodles, and I like my cold noodles with add-ons such as hard-boiled egg and meat and cucumbers and stuff. Okay, they had a few sliced cucumbers or something similar, and there was half a sliced tomato. But the addition of at least some egg would have really made the dish for me.
The broth had the familiar slightly sweet tang I’m used to (the secret ingredient in The Corner Place’s broth is supposedly 7-Up). This broth also had a bit of a kick from the addition of jalapenos, which I could have lived without, although it wasn’t so spicy as to be inedible.
The ambiance was pleasant and the service was good. The kalbi we ordered was tasty, and as far as the panchan go, the bean sprouts were to die for. We ate about three or four dishes of them. Although the place wasn’t crowded when we arrived at 11:45 a.m., by the time we left around 1ish or so there was a wait for a table. There’s street parking and a small lot where the parking guys seem to be on a power trip and will tell you to move your car even if you’re not parked in a dedicated market or laundromat parking spot.
For the record, The Corner Place is NOT located on a corner.
The Corner Place
2819 James M. Wood Blvd
(1 block east of Vermont)
Los Angeles, CA 90006