HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >


Korean BBQ in the OC

Looking for amazing Korean BBQ in the OC. I've read older posts but want a fresh new take on this topic. I've definitely had some great korean bbq in LA, and im looking for something comparable in the OC where i go to school. Something not too expensive, not more then 25 a person after tax and tip. thanks for any recs!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. There are Korean enclaves in the Garden Grove, Irvine - Tustin and Buena Park areas. Are you anywhere near those towns?

    1. Anjin in Costa Mesa is my favorite Korean BBQ place by far. The only drawback is that they don't take reservations and there's usually a wait. However, they have you write down your name and phone number, then they call you when a table is ready. They always hold your table for you, even if you're 5-10 min away. We usually go somewhere to get drinks while we're waiting, so if you come prepared to wait a little bit, it's not bad at all.

      3033 S. BRISTOL STREET, Costa Mesa,
      Tel:(714) 979-6700
      11:30am to 2pm (Mon-Fri), 5pm to 1am (7 Days)

      1 Reply
      1. re: underover

        Anjin is not a Korean BBQ place. I read this post and had a craving for Korean BBQ, so I figured I'd give Anjin a try. When I got there, I was disappointed that it was a Japanese BBQ place, not Korean, but I figured I'd try it. I went with 2 other people, and we had about 7 orders. We paid about $60, with no drinks and were left starving after the meal. The food was plain and bland. The dipping sauces were ok, but you end up tasting the sauce, not the meat. I was pretty disappointed.

        I do like how they call you when your table is ready. Overall, if you are in the area, go to Oki Doki instead.

      2. I cannot recall the name (Yi Dynasty?), but in Newport by the airport...it's the strip mall behind the plaza that has Staples/Jamba Juice. I think the cross street is Martingale that separates the two strips. there was an excellent Korean BBQ place my co-worker took me to. Always an Asian crowd inside. Didn't pay for the meal (and my friends had too many beers), so I cannot verify price. Sorry.

        1 Reply
        1. re: pizookie75

          yi dynasty is alright and if u need to stay in the newport beach area, its probably your best bet

          you could definitely do better in garden grove...im not 100% sure whats the best bbq in garden grove these days, but should be easy to figure out

        2. The obvious one is Shik Do Rak since it's the OC branch of the LA restaurant. There are other good places too but you wanted something like LA.

          1. A Korean friend just took me to a Korean restaurant next to Ralphs on the corner of Culver and Walnut. I think it might be called Tofu house. Casual/funky little place for a strip mall. Excellent Bulgogi and more.

            3 Replies
            1. re: 212

              That's Irvine Tofu House. It's not bad, but it's too sweet.

              1. re: Das Ubergeek

                Das, you're thinking of the wrong place. Irvine Tofu House is on Jeffrey and Walnut and personally I am not a big fan though back in the day their galbi was pretty decent. Most non-koreans like this place.

                The place that 212 is thinking of used to be a BCD joint but I think they got out of the franchise somehow and renamed it with the same food. This place (name is now KOba Grill or something like that) is very good and generally packed at night.

                1. re: choctastic

                  I stand corrected -- all those streets in Irvine run together in a haze for me!

                  I'll have to try the other place.

            2. One the best and cleanest Korean BBQ is Soul Garden in Tustin. The place is located in a strip mall on the corner of El Camino and Red Hill. You will be happy with the service and the seclection of food to choose from. I can not tell you how important it is to be spotless when your eating in a buffet. This place is truley spotless.
              13828 Red Hill Ave, Tustin, 92780 - (714) 573-9292

              2 Replies
              1. re: shellyj

                Seoul Garden is disgusting. It's not even authentic. It's "OC" Korean food, which is bad, bad, and more bad. I would say that anything in the Tustin/Irvine are or further South are going to be bad. You have to go to Fullerton/ Yorba Linda or GG to get decent Korean food.

                1. re: jayw

                  I have to concur about Seoul Garden being disgusting, though your little barb about "OC" Korean food irks me -- where do you think Garden Grove and Buena Park are? (It's Buena Park that's the northern outpost of Korean culture in OC, by the way, not Yorba Linda.)

                  There's a branch of Kaju Soft Tofu, by the way, which is excellent for soondubu jjigae, in the same plaza as 99 Ranch and Hsin Hsin Shau May Deli, on Jeffrey and Walnut. It's across from Irvine Tofu House.

                1. re: jkao1817

                  I love Surah. Great panchan. And ask for the "brown rice". For me the entree is just an excuse to eat that, and the panchan.

                  Although I think it's in Buena Park. Which IS in Orange County.

                  5333 Beach Blvd, Buena Park Ca 90621, Tel 714 523 0056

                  It is considered a good restaurant (along with the other one that begins with an S), even by Koreans who live in Hancock Park. It can be very crowded, we go early. Do they take reservations?

                2. My friends and I frequent this place:

                  Cham Sut Gol
                  9252 Garden Grove Blvd # 10, Garden Grove, CA

                  They have duk bok sim with the rice paper and thin radish slices. Really good thin brisket, spicy chicken, and pork belly. No bulgogi or kalbi, but I can eat the brisket all night with the sesame oil/salt dip! Never paid more the $21/person for the AYCE including tax and tip. They have scoop yourself ice cream for dessert.

                  1. like a few have noted, the most decent places in oc are in GG and BP... there are a couple in cerritos as well such as jang soo jang (south and bloomfield sts.) i've always been surprised at irvine not having any good ones, considering the pretty vast korean population there... the ones in surrounding areas are even worse such as yi dynasty.