Korean BBQ - 2021 Update

The man knows his Mandarin.

It’s been awhile since I’ve had higher-end KBBQ, but this is my choice, as well. There is something decidedly unfussy (but still fairly upscale) about the place, which is appealing to me.

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they are the same i had a brainfart

tangs and jjigaes*

tangs are generally soupy/brothy, jjigaes are thicker, have more solid ingredients inside, more akin to casseroles than soups necessarily. but i’m sure you know this lol

good callout! hope you’ve been well!!!


ahhhhh…got it!

Was there this past weekend. Good as always, although the banchan was tiny and the kimchi/tofu soup could use some work. Service was incredibly slow as they seemed understaffed. SBJ is always in the rotation for the throwback feel and the charcoal, but there are just so many places with better meats.


Yeah service is tough at a lot of places right now due to staffing issues. And agree with you, the quality is definitely not in the top tier… but if I’m going to smell like a mess anyway, I prefer charcoal to splattered grease. Thanks for the intel on the banchan!! That’s good to know

Speaking of banchan do you know if Gaenali on Garden Grove Blvd is still doing the gejang for banchan. The owner used to give me refills of gejang =)

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I have no idea but they must have really liked you bc I’ve seen tables of non Koreans not get the gaejang at other places. Don’t want to waste the precious goods on non believers.

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What’s the best AYCE recommendation?

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Don’t do it?


I like Jjukku Jjukku. Banchan is sparse but the meat quality is really high if you go with the premium option. Plus they use charcoal in their grills.


Very true - the space and crowd are super, the food not so much.

… which is why you pre-mukbang bangbang at Bumsan Organic Milk Bar before dinner at Daedo Sikbang (pictured: pink guava soft serve & pineapple mango ice cream with croiffle)…
#EatDessertFirst #MukbangBangBang #YourClothesWillSmellTheSameAfterwardsAtBothPlaces


I’ve had good experiences at Oo Kook, are my standards too low?

Just had my first meal at Park’s today. Went with a friend, we got the P2 to share (Ggot Sal, Parks Gal-Bi, Bulgogi, Beef Brisket, Boneless Beef Short Rib, Rib Eye Steak, Pork Belly, Mushrooms). I thought it was going to be too much but we finished all the meat and most of the banchan.

The banchan were quite good. Ggot Sal was very good, galbi was was fine but I wasn’t a huge fan of the marinade, bulgogi was incredible, brisket was mediocre, bonless short rib was ok, rib eye was a waste of a perfectly good steak (imo - my friend liked it), pork belly marinade was too sweet. Mushrooms were good.

For ~$115/head ($189 + tax + tip) I expected a bit more, frankly. We didn’t even order any wagyu, but I could’ve sworn I saw someone say it’d be difficult to break $100/head without that. Possibly their prices went up with the recent inflation? We could’ve ordered P1 with some soup/rice/noodles/etc but, to be honest, that’s not why I go to kbbq. If I ever go back I’ll probably just get several orders of bulgogi a la carte, since it was truly best-in-class.

I liked Genwa the last time I went but that was in 2019. Is Gwang Yang still punching in its weight class? What else is worth trying at the top end? ABSteak?


A great new choice for high end K-BBQ

Like many places that become perennials on every Best of ______ list, I think Park’s has, for some time, been (chose your cliche) resting-on-its-laurels/victim-of-its-own-success/overly-pleased-with-itself; prices go up while quality and attention to detail (and customers) slips.


Last time I went to Park’s was a year ago and it was great and an excellent value given the quality, definitely didn’t seem like they were resting on their laurels.

I’m still crazy about Parks. Great cuts of meat, terrific banchan, and excellent service throughout the pandemic. And their outdoor area was perfectly executed during the height of Covid.

I did a big group dinner at Gwang Yang a couple months ago and was disappointed. The cuts of meat didn’t warrant the price, the banchan was weak, and service was slow. The only thing they had going for them are reservations and all the private rooms. It’s a bummer as I really liked them when they first opened and their high price was warranted at that time.


Chosun Galbee still has great cuts of meat, banchan, and outdoor dining space. Love the yukhoe (beef tartare with egg and Asian pear) there…


Any word on Mun? I’ve tried a couple times to get in but each time the wait was quite long. Wound up going down the street to Woo Hyang Woo or Quarters or Toe Bang instead. Balancing intent with at-the-moment hunger can be difficult - it’s hard to wait around and make good decisions on a totally empty stomach. Still interested if the general consensus is positive.