I love Koreatown in the springtime…

Wherein I blog about all things Korean in Los Angeles

Heart-y KBBQ February 25, 2008

I meant to post this on Valentine’s Day, honestly I did. It’s not actually the KBBQ that’s heart-y, it’s the rice done on the grill afterward (so delicious). Here’s the pic.

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This is from Hae Jang Chon (also known as “that pig place in the strip mall on 6th,” because apparently many people can’t remember its name – including me; I had to look it up). I liked Hae Jang Chon, although on a repeat visit our server didn’t form the rice into a heart. But he was cool and let us sit and chat forever.

I particularly liked the beef brisket at Hae Jang Chon. I was also interested in the fact that they use radish to clean the grill. They dump a bunch of radish on, push it around with the scraper, then when they scrape it off the grease comes with it. Ingenious. Never seen that before.

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Hae Jang Chon’s all-you-can-eat option includes AYCE meat, two soups (one before the meal, one after), lettuce salad, panchan (not as varied as some places, but they compensate by providing more dipping sauces for the meat than some), kimchee pancakes (yum), and fried rice done on the grill at the end (less meat and more seaweed than some, but delicious). It’s reasonably priced at about $16. They’ve got a parking lot, but it’s valet at night, so be expecting that if you go. During the day it’s also valet, but I zipped into a spot on my own before I got to the valet station, and nobody stopped me.

Hae Jang Chon
3821 W. 6th Street
(cross-street: Serrano, IIRC)
Los Angeles, CA 90020
http://www.haejangchon.com

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K-town Galleria Companion Post: Bibimbap at the Galleria February 11, 2008

Filed under: restaurants — Raven @ 11:01 pm
Tags: ,

There’s a particular place in the Koreatown Galleria food court that specializes in bibimbap with a huge number of vegetables (17? 21? I forgot). I also forgot the name of the place (I’m doing well, aren’t I?), or rather I forgot to write down the name of it (yup, doing well). It’s located in the southwest corner, on the south wall. I think. Unless my sense of direction was off. Anyway, yes, I’ve been very imprecise. If anybody remembers the name of the place, please comment and tell me. 🙂 EDIT: Thanks to reader SKFK, who very kindly checked on this for me, I now know that the name of the place is Yangji Express.

This was the first time I had tried non-dolsot bibimbap (a.k.a. bibimbap sans stone pot). Below is the complete ensemble. In the metal bowl you see the bibim part of the bibimbap, beside it is the bap part (the rice), and there’s a small dish of hot sauce. I used only a minimal amount of hot sauce when I combined everything, enough to get some flavor without getting too much spice.

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Non-dolsot bibimbap is probably the only Korean dish I could successfully recreate at home (the seaweed soup I tried to make for my birthday didn’t come out too well; it helps if you buy the right kind of seaweed). After all, you basically just take some vegetables and a soft-boiled egg, add rice and hot sauce, and you’re done. This particular place in the Galleria uses some non-traditional vegetables (I think corn was in there), but maybe they have to because they’re trying to get their veggie count as high as possible so they can advertise their impossibly high veggie count. It was good. It’s hard to go wrong with veggies, rice, and an egg. Plus no one tried to tell me I couldn’t have what I wanted, the way they do at certain bibimbap places in certain other Koreatown malls very close to the Galleria (for details go here). Of course, the fact that my lunch companion ordered in Korean may have helped.

P.S. To the person who found my blog yesterday by searching for the fat content in bibimbap, I imagine it depends on what you get in the bibimbap. Stick with veggies, rice, and hot sauce, and you’re probably doing pretty well. Add kalbi and, well, probably not so well. If you’re concerned about cholesterol, ask them to leave off the egg (although it won’t taste as good without it). Happy feasting on bibimbap!

 

Koreatown Galleria February 5, 2008

Filed under: Koreatown & K-town events and shopping — Raven @ 3:41 pm

Why did I think the Koreatown Galleria would be a bigger, better, more modern version of the Koreatown Plaza? Okay, it’s more modern, maybe. At least the food court is on the third floor instead of stuck two levels below ground, so while eating you can actually see that there’s an outside world (there are tables outside, too). But basically, the two malls aren’t too different. Upscale stores, bakeries with samples to try, a market each.

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There is one thing the Galleria boasts that the K-town Plaza doesn’t, however, and that’s a wholesale restaurant supply store in the basement. If you don’t know it’s there, you may not find it, because it’s tucked away on the lowest level of the parking structure, and you can’t get to it using the mall elevators. To get to the place you go down to the bottom level of the structure, walk through a wholesale food supply (for a mere $10 I could’ve bought a six-month supply of pine nuts). Then you duck through a doorway, and there you are. Kitchenware galore. I like to browse in home stores, so I was in heaven. My companion and I browsed the whole place. If you need Korean cookware, you’ll find it here.

Why this place is here I have no idea. I mean, who would think to put a wholesale restaurant supply in the parking structure of a mall? Seriously. But I guess it has to be somewhere. It does make it easier for any food court vendors who need supplies.

The Koreatown Galleria also yielded another gem. While there my companion and I noticed this interesting shoe store. Take a look at the name of the store and the color of the shoes for sale inside. Yeah.

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Korea Comes to the Hollywood Bowl February 1, 2008

Filed under: music — Raven @ 3:13 am
Tags: ,

I’m making up for the last-minute nature of most of my previous announcements by making this announcement incredibly far in advance. But since tickets are already on sale, I guess it’s okay.

I suppose I should say exactly what I’m announcing. That would be the 2008 Korean Music Festival at the Hollywood Bowl on May 17. I understand the music won’t be limited to kpop but will include many types of Korean music, so there should be something everyone can enjoy. I don’t think the artist list is finalized yet, at least not according to this blog. The show will be followed by fireworks.

More info on the Korean Music Festival, including how to buy tickets, can be found here.