I'm moving back to New York in a few months and this list of places will be the things that I miss the most from this city, largely because you cannot gchat or text with Korean food.
  1. Parks BBQ
    Probably the best Korean BBQ in the city and was started by the former wife of a Korean mob member. Order: the flower cut, rice paper, steamed egg, cold noodle
  2. Soowon Galbi
    There are less mob ties to this restaurant, but equally great meat. It's pretty neck and neck (meat joke?) with Parks. They also have kimchi made with cilantro that is fucking dope and I think they also sell gelato for some reason too. Order: the raw beef starter, flower cut, king marinated cut
  3. Corner Place
    Honestly, none of these other places have any known gang ties, so don't expect them to moving forward. This place is kind of hood (and thus less Whites friendly) and the meat is mediocre-ish, BUT the cold noodles make up for it and they are my favorite in the city. Order: COLD NOODLES, flower cut (pretty much just always get this if you see it), sliced brisket
  4. Dong Il Jang
    Also a little less polished, but still really good. They cook your meat on a pan and then use those meat juices and droppings to make a kimchi fried rice. Unrelated to the food: the waitresses are all older women dressed in these housemaid costumes (not sexual); it's weird to think that they are probably someone's mom. Order: roast gui, rib eye
  5. Sun Ha Jang
    This is probably my favorite restaurant on this list, if only because it is the most unique -- I've never even had the type of food they serve here in Korea. It's essentially duck Korean BBQ, and they give you (surprisingly free range) sliced duck that cooks on an iron pan and creates this pool of duck fat that the rest of your duck then sous vides in. THEN, when you're all done they make a FRIED RICE IN THE DUCK FAT. GO HERE NOW. Order: the sliced duck -- do not forget to ask for garlic
  6. Pork Jang Gun
    Relatively new, this place specializes in pork belly and you cook it on this little copper dome surrounded by a moat of stock and kimchi that then mixes with the pork fat (that drops off the dome) to make a kimchi stew. Also, don't sleep on the fermented perilla leaf here (never sleep on perilla leaves). Order: kimchi pork belly, steamed egg
  7. Mirak
    This is typically a hard place to convince white ppl to go to because stewed goat sounds like it would be gamey and gross, but it's actually really delicious and tender and tastes like short rib. There's an unreal dipping sauce that uses spicy mustard and perilla seeds -- also, more fried rice here. Order: stewed goat and iron plate goat stew
  8. Mapo Galbi
    I actually don't love this place that much (it's like bottom of the first tier, top of the second tier IMO) but CELEBRITY CHEF David Chang says it's the "best Korean restaurant in LA", so why not, I guess. Order: the spicy chicken and then the rice with the mozzarella cheese
  9. Yu Chun Chic Naeng Myun
    The cold buckwheat noodles here are probably the best in LA (the noodles at Corner Place are rice noodles and also more delicious) and they also have self-serve broth on tap too <-pretty cool sentence alert. Order: either of the cold noodles, the boiled dumplings (NOT THE KIMCHI DUMPLINGS -- they will try really hard to sell you the kimchi dumplings but do not acquiesce)
  10. Han Bat
    Great oxtail soup, my grandmother is a big fan of this restaurant. I've never seen white people in here. Getting sort of tired of writing this list. Order: whatever, it's all good, you can't go wrong
  11. Beverly Soon Tofu
    Another favorite of my grandmother, this is the best soon tofu in LA. If you like BCD tofu house you will probably like this even more. If you don't know what BCD tofu house is, you're probably white, so this fact may be more relevant to you: Anthony Bourdain recommends this restaurant. Order: whatever you want