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Nov 19, 2001 01:07 PM

NoVA Korean?

  • j

With winter fast approaching, we're looking to try some korean food to warm the soul and palatte. I know there are a plethora of Korean places in NoVa, particularly Annandale, but can anyone give specific recommendations on which places are really good? Also, what to order and how to order/eat it (we're complete novices when it comes to korean, but I do know I like their grilled meats). Many thanks.

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  1. The Washington Post did a great roundup of Annandale Korean restaurants a few years ago. I just happen to have it tacked up to my bulletin board. :>) It's probably too old to be in their archives, but for what it's worth the places the Post mentioned are:

    Gam Mee Oaic, known for goat-meat soup and some other interesting soups.
    Hee Been, barbecue and sushi
    Kaboja, fish soups and sushi
    Kun San House, skate wing and other seafood
    Jin Sung Garden, barbecue and sushi
    Nulbom, grilled stuff on skewers
    Pyung Yang Man Doo: North Korean style dumplings
    Seoul Soondae: Sausage and assorted pig parts
    Sun-Dal Chung: Beef-blood broth and cow-neck-bone broth, both supposed to be good for what ails ya
    Yechon: Barbecue

    Hee Been is the best known; I've had the lunch buffet there, which is a great deal. It's also a good way to try many of the standards.

    Tom Sietsema included Yechon in his restaurant guide. He gave their barbeque high marks. I had some sushi there a few years ago; I thought it was good. Note that Koreans like their sushi cut thick. Sietsema found the sushi ordinary.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Bob W.

      Another option (though decidedly low-brow) is the 'food court' at Lotte in Fairfax City (on Lee Hwy where it splits from 50). There's one place there that makes an excellent Mandoo Gook, as well as good bulgogi, bibimbap, etc. They have a Japanese noodle place, too, that can do very good nabemono. It's very cheap, and usually packed with Korean families. And you can get your Asian groceries afterwards.

      1. re: Jamesglu

        In a similar vein the Han Ah Reum market at Lee Hwy. and Gallows Rd. in Merrifield also has a lunch counter. I enjoyed a great bowl of Korean noodle soup there.

    2. As a long-time fan of Korean food (I lived there for 15 years),I agree that Hee Been and Yechon are both good. The flagship restaurant for Korean food in the DC area, however, remains Woo Lae Oak on South Joyce Street in Arlington (behind the Pentagon City Mall). Not only do they have an extensive menu, I have never had a bad meal there. It is also the restaurant of choice when the Korean Embassy types need to take some VIP visitor out to eat.

      1. Tom Sietsema posts a mostly positive review of Sorak Garden in Annandale in this coming Sunday's Post. He likes the food, not the service. You can read the review on the Post web site now.

        Jim Zurer
        Washington DC