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A Dallas Hound needs help!

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I am coming in to town to visit a friend who lives in Koreatown (Wilshire & Olympic and between 1st and 10th). She just moved in and doesn't know which Korean restaurant(s) to try. Recommendations!

I also need a couple of recommendations for a "trendy", great date spot that is not sushi. Asian fusion would definitely work (not Asia de Cuba, though - been there, done that). Price no concern - looking for "trendy" ambience, people watching and great food.

Thanks!!!

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  1. For Koreatown, definitely try Ma Dang Gooksoo for noodles. I'm sure you can do a search and find tons of recs for Korean barbecue in the area also.

    1 Reply
    1. re: baloney

      Agreed!!! go to MA DANG

    2. For trendy, I think you want one of these: Mozza, Hatfield's, Bin 8945, AOC.

      1. My favorite place in K-Town is Sa Rit Gol. It's an authentic Korean place -- not one of these gussied up American-Korean BBQ places. The panchan is fantastic. My Korean friends love the place and I have to agree with them.

        For a trendy date spot, you could try Mozza, Lucques, Sushi Roku, Koi, Grace, and others. Do you have a geographic preference?

        3 Replies
        1. re: glutton

          My geographic preference would be within 30 minutes of where she lives.

          Thanks for the help!

          1. re: Epicurious Esquire

            All my recs would fit that bill.

            1. re: Epicurious Esquire

              Holy God, half the city is within half an hour of Koreatown, at least on the weekends -- you can have everything from boat noodles in Thai Town to ramen in Little Tokyo to Armenian food in Glendale to trendy Cal cuisine in Santa Monica to sushi in Studio City.

          2. Chosun galbi is very close to you- nice atmosphere, great korean bbq and a lot of variety. The BEST asian fusion I've been to in LA is Orris on Sawtelle(recommended: beet and basque cheese app and foie gras with eggplant). Im thinking madang gooksoo is a little too casual for a date

            1. Check Opus on Wilshire by the Wiltern for trendy and excellent. Go on an off night and get the tasting menu. Check this board or Johnathan Gold's column in the LA Weekly this week for raves.

              Andrew

              1. I forgot about M Grill on wilshire right in the middle of koreatown- brazilian churascurria, cheaper than fogo de chao even though it's not as grand. the atmosphere is great for dates plus theres usually no wait even on weekends

                1 Reply
                1. re: ILoveNatto

                  On a Friday night, M-Grill was fully booked, but we were able to easily get a reservation 20 minutes ahead of time at Fogo. In either case, M-Grill is the winner in terms of food and price point. Fogo had some good dishes, but it was very inconsistent. Some were juicy and delicious, but others were dry and tasted pre chewed meat.

                2. Park's BBQ for Korean BBQ. Soot Bull Jeep is also another good option for Korean BBQ. Both are charcoal.

                  For trendy Asian fusion, try Celadon. Adobe is also good, but not necessarily Asian fusion.

                  1. While in that neck of the woods, also check out the 3rd/Fairfax Farmer's Market. I think it's a great people watching spot and plenty of places to get great chow in the middle of the day (they close at night).

                    As far as trendy ambience, there's BLD and Mozza. Grace and Hatfield's are great, don't get me wrong, but a totally different vibe. Those are much more of a special occasion type of spot, more culinary mecca and less people watching. In fact, when I'm at Grace, I'm usually so focused on my dining companion that I barely notice the other people in the room.

                    The nice middle ground would definitely be AOC, which has the culinary chops to stand on its own (my favorite there: roasted dates with parmesan wrapped in bacon) as well as being a people-watching spot. Celadon has wonderful Asian fusion, also.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: SauceSupreme

                      Asia in Los Feliz might be worth a try. www.asialosfeliz.com We went with another foodie family of 3 and shared everything and loved it all. Also, I'm sure I'm going to get bashed for this but The Ivy is definitely a great place to people watch and the food is reliable.

                    2. So this is where I am so far.

                      1. I've got Saturday nite reservations for Lucques. I can't wait. Thanks Glutton.

                      2. I still need to do some research, but I'm going to go to either Orris or Celadon.

                      3. We're going to do a nice, slow Saturday lunch at Sa Rit Gol, for no other reason than this quote, "My Korean friends love the place".

                      Thanks again!!

                      Oh, and if any of you are ever in Dallas, hit me up. Nothing like giving somebody a rec that they truly enjoy.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Epicurious Esquire

                        I would suggest Orris over Celadon. The reviews of Celadon have been spotty, so even though it is one of the trendiest spots in LA (and therefore good for people watching), I would suggest going to Orris, where the food will be superior. And it's not like Orris is a dump inside -- it's actually got a very nice atmosphere, but it doesn't match the star appeal of Celadon.

                        I hope you like Lucques... it's had staying power, which is notable in LA.