Purchasing banchan in the south bay

greetings, ftc’ers: i’m back in l.a for a short trip before heading off to hawaii. a quick question to start: other than large korean supermarkets, where can one go in the south bay to find a wide range of banchan? relative proximity to seal beach preferred but not required.

thanks in advance!

Hansung Ggoolmott Kimchi in La Mirada is the answer. They have several type of kimchi depending on the season and a good variety of ban chan.


X 2 Hansung is my favorite banchan shop in OC.

Seoul Do Soon Yi is a closer just go up Seal Beach Blvd, hit the freeway and the 22 East to Magnolia or Brookhurst


There is a new place in Buena Park called Oh Mama Kitchen. It seems like they specialize in kimbap and more home style take out stuff. They have a few fridges of take home meals and ban chan. I’ve heard some good things so I’ll probably try them out soon. Photo from Yelp.


thanks very much for the recommendation of hansung ggoolmot kimchi. we picked up some goodies this afternoon. look forward to sampling some of them with dinner tonight. first order of business on getting home though was removing the price tags before my mother-in-law got a look at them…


you are clearly a wise man and a seasoned veteran


In addition to the kimchi I like the mandu, oyster banchan, perilla leaves banchan, and the sweet rice drink


as i was in the company of the missus we were given the rundown properly on the banchan selection by the old gent in the store. on my own i wouldn’t have known what most of the banchan were (no english signage) and he and i had no language in common. well, maybe he speaks english but with the missus present all the description happened in korean. he recommended the dried radish strips and the bellflower root banchan as being particularly good right now (he also recommended the leek kimchi). in addition, we got the big container of marinated oysters and a smaller one of the clams. plus a bag of frozen mandu (veg and pork)—and a bottle of perilla seed oil my m-i-l had asked us to look for. and the leek kimchi as well.

we sampled all four of the banchan at dinner tonight. the clams and oysters were excellent but, boy, the radish and the bellflower root were even better. the latter has a balance of acidic, spicy and sweet not always found in banchan from other sources (where the acid tends to be in the lead); and the former was done very differently from other dried radish strips banchan i’ve had (there was no red in this at all).

i don’t know that we’ll have time to go back on this short visit (and we have to finish all of this) but we’ll be back on the next trip for sure.

and, yes, the leek kimchi is excellent as well–a first for me.


HMart in Garden Grove (GG Blvd and Magnolia) is really not that far from Seal Beach.

There’s an H Mart in Lakewood, and Kim Long Market in Long Beach.

IMO Hansung in Buena Park has the best store bought banchan/kimchi in So Cal. The banchan offerings are more than the usual and typical. The Grandpa that work there is so sweet and kind.

If you happen to be in OC I think it’s worth a stop with a ice cooler to bring back to LA.

If I was back home in So Cal I would go here on the weekly or every 2 weeks, easily.

Hell I would bring a rice cooker with koshihikari and go to town in the parking lot! Throw in a frozen mug so I can have that sweet rice drink on the spot as well


yes, for what it’s worth we thought the banchan from hansung was way better than anything we’ve ever got from hmart–or any other large korean grocery–in koreatown or anywhere.

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I went to this place about a week ago. Opened in 2018 with a table or two but shifted to all takeaway prepared food business model during the pandemic. Ban chan, stews, and kimbap are all really nice, tastes homemade despite coming in plastic containers. The La Mirada/Buena Park/Fullerton border is not South Bay, but this place might have the widest selection overall as there are eight or so refrigerated cases full of a big variety ban chan.


Yeah def not South Bay but looks worthy of a checkout will stop by next time I’m in the area.