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Ja Jyang Myeon - Korean Bean Paste Noodles

any recommendations for JJM in Ktown area? I've seen this one place in the Koreatown Galleria food court (olympic/western)... a lot of ppl eat it there. Thanks!

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  1. There is one with a chinese mask logo in ktown that has great jjm

    2 Replies
    1. re: kare_raisu

      do you the name of the restaurant?

      1. re: alias

        That would be Dragon, which is on Vermont by Olympic, next door to Yongsusan.

    2. I had it for the first time a few months ago at the Little China Restaurant in Gardena (182nd and Western). I've always seen lots of people (most local Koreans) eating that and I said to myself, I have to try it one day. I guess it's an acquired taste to liking it but it was just OK for me. I still prefer their spicy beef noodle soup instead. My other friend raves about their extra spicy seafood noodle soup which name escapes me right now. All I know it definitely makes me wish I had eaten ice cream after though! I would make a grown man cry...

      1 Reply
      1. re: Clinton

        "My other friend raves about their extra spicy seafood noodle soup which name escapes me right now. All I know it definitely makes me wish I had eaten ice cream after though!"

        You're thinking of jjam-pong.

        I much prefer jja jang myun.

      2. That place in the Koreatown Galleria is called Jin Heun Gak (sp?) and is pretty good. I prefer to get the jja jjang myun with beef. Also, the JJM at the Dragon on Vermont/Olympic is good as well.

        1 Reply
        1. re: caveatempty

          Thanks, cavempty, you've just reminded me that ppl on CH have mentioned Dragon.... next to Yongsusan. I think i'll try that place first.

        2. Looks like someone is doing his korean food research ;)

          The jja jjang myun at the Dragon is decent. We've been going there for years. The one at Heung Rae Gak was very good from what I remember. I've never been to Authentic Korean Dumplings, but I hear good things about it from people. Another place that people tend to mention is Young King on Olympic and Kingsley, but I went there just last month and didn't really like it.

          Personally, I haven't been wowed with too many jja jjang myun places - the noodles are overcooked or the sauce is too watery or not enough meat and way too much zucchini. I've resorted to making it at home but am always looking for a great place too. Please let me know if you find any good ones !

          Heung Rae Gak
          357 S Western Ave
          Los Angeles , CA 90020
          (213) 383-0178

          Authentic Korean Dumplings
          698 S Irolo St #111, at 7th
          Los Angeles 90006
          213-480-1289

          1. Young King Restaurant
            3100 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006

            I order the "Kahn Ja Jyang" - the sauce is re-heated separately and served separately from the noddles. You mix it yourself.

            14 Replies
            1. re: tatertots

              Will they serve it cold for you?

              I used to eat the Chinese version of this noodle dish cold in the summers, garnished with julienned cucumbers and steamed bean sprouts. T'was thee best.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                ja ja mein is considered chinese korean food

                1. re: justagthing

                  Yes, I know.

                  But do you know if it is originally a Chinese or Korean noodle dish?

                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    from what I was told it was made by chinese that live in korea

                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jajangmyeon

                    1. re: justagthing

                      I've always wondered why some of our Chinese restaurants here in the South Bay area served kim chee when we first sat down. I've learned that the owners were Chinese but were raised in Korea. Little China in Gardena is one of those restaurants as well as the now closed Ho Ho Restaurant. Even happened to us in San Francisco.

                      1. re: Clinton

                        I grew up with my mom serving kim chee sometimes, not realizing it was a Korean staple. There are chinese pickles out there, but not exactly like the Korean kim chee. Funny, when I talk about other asian foods, sometimes she gets upset and says that Chinese have that too or had it first. I really don't care as long as it taste good.

                      2. re: justagthing

                        See, that's interesting. My understanding is that is is a Northern Chinese dish (ala Ban Mu Yuan (A&J) in Alhambra, for example.

                        The Korean version is slightly different, modified to Korean taste and is the subject of this thread, that is often seen in Korean restaurants or Korean Chinese restaurants.

                        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zha_jian...

                      3. re: ipsedixit

                        It's based on the Chinese dish Zha Jiang Mian but has been adapted for Korean palettes. A lot of Korean-Chinese food is basically adaptations of northern-chinese classics.

                  2. re: tatertots

                    I also agree with YOUNG KING. Grew up eating this style of food my whole life and I think YOUNG KING is very good. Another good spot is that chinese restaurant on the 1st floor of Koreatown Plaza on Western (not Galleria which is on Olympic). Both can get busy and crowded.

                    JJAMPPONG - spicy seafood soup w. noodles / JJAJJANGMYUN - ask for SAMSUNG style (with seafood) / TANG SOO YOOK (fried pork meat with sweet n sour sauce) / KKANPPONG SHRIMP (spicy sweet fried shrimp) / their buns and cold seafood jelly fish dishes are good too.

                    1. re: flavasista

                      Thanks tots, adding it to my list. i like the idea of serving the sauce separately - i can add as much as i need. Ips, i'm used to eating it chinese style where the sauce is added on top of the noodles also. so good.

                      Flavasista, thanks. Is the place on the first floor called Mandarin Cuisine? I've seen it before. love jjampong. The tang soo yook sounds awesome... does it literally translate to 'sweet fried meat' b/c it sounds just like cantonese... 'tong sieu yook'.

                        1. re: flavasista

                          I also agree with Young King... I think it's a lot better than Dragon, for sure. I like their ja jang meun, and even though I'm not a huge fan of tang soo yook, it's pretty good at Young King.

                        2. re: tatertots

                          I might go there for lunch today.

                          1. re: woojink

                            Went there for lunch today. Had the Ja Jang Myun and Tang Soo Yok. Totally reminded me of my childhood comfort food. It was good, but these dishes are not what you'd consider high end cuisine in any way shape or form. Young King has a very good execution of these dishes. Good lunch.

                        3. Does anyone know why in the U.S., JJM is not served with sliced raw cucumber on the top? At places at the koreatown galleria and at peking gourmet this is served with sauce only....... strange that this is not the same as how it is served in Korea.

                          8 Replies
                          1. re: Schweinhaxen

                            I've only seen it served with julienned cucumbers in Chinese places.

                            That's how I always eat my JJM, and I also add some bean sprouts as well

                            1. re: ipsedixit

                              The Chinese version is served with cucumber and sprouts. Also the Chinese version of the sauce is much ligther (different type of bean paste and probably amount) and has the baked tofu in it.

                              The Korean version is much darker and pastier and has zuccini in it.

                              I love the Chines version but my wife loves the Korean version (must be our ethnic background :o))

                              You can get the Chinese version at Dumpling Master. It is pretty good, not as good as mom's. If you want I can get you a recipe for it.

                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                Hey ipsedixit, I have it that way too at Mandarin Noodle in Monterey Park, which I love, except I think they have julienned zucchini instead of cucumbers. Where are your favorite places for JJM in the San Gabriel Valley?

                                1. re: chowchow12345678

                                  Good places to JJM would include Dai Ho Restaurant (in Temple City) and Dumpling House (also in Temple City). The latter place is a Chinese restaurant owned and operated by Koreans. Good stuff, esp. their fish dumplings.

                              2. re: Schweinhaxen

                                In Korea, are you eating it at Chinese restaurants?

                                1. re: justagthing

                                  Korean Chinese food is like the McDonalds or Pizza Hut of Korea...... Koreans love JJM, and these places are ubiquitous......

                                2. re: Schweinhaxen

                                  That is weird. I can't give you specifics, but I've definitely had Ja Ja Myung served with cucumber in the US.

                                  1. re: a_and_w

                                    jastagthing and a_and_w are correct. These food all originated from Chinese dishes and were brought to Korea by people from Shandong who opened Chinese restaurants in Korea. However, they've become so popular and ubiquitous in Korea over the years that some mistakenly think it was Korean.

                                    Usually the Gan Zha Jiang (or kan jjajjang in Korean), which as the sauce (a similar but different sauce) and noodles served separately, gets the privliege of the extra julienned cucumber on top. But it is not a hard rule and really depends on the restaurant.

                                    Tang Soo Yook is from the Chinese (Tang Cu Rou - sugar vinegar pork) - Shandong's version of fried breaded pork covered (or served on the side) sweet/sour sauce. It is the equivalent of Sweet & Sour Pork, which is Cantonese version of the same dish made for Americans.

                                3. little dragon in gardena (rosecrans ave. / normandie) also has pretty good jjm.

                                  in torrance, the chinese restaurant in freshia market also has jjm that is decent.

                                  RVD.

                                  1. Does anyone have a recommendation on where I can get this down in South Orange County? I'm talking down by Mission Viejo. Totally have a craving!

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: woojink

                                      gurantee there is a place in the garden grove for the korean version if you search the boards for korean garden grove you'll find it, i've read about it before

                                      if you go to A&J in Irvine they serve the chinese version (you might want to memorize the characters as i'm not sure if they have an english menu its called zha jiang mian in chinese)...A&J's version is pretty decent though its not amazing, but A&J on the whole is good (its probably the best out of the irvine chinese restaurants)

                                      1. re: Lau

                                        A&J Irvine actually made a great bowl of beef noodle soup and ja jiang mian. that was in '97 when i last ate there... i'm sure the chefs have been changed around.

                                        1. re: eatdrinknbmerry

                                          still have great beef noodle soup, zha jiang mian is decent, but not great

                                    2. have to agree with flavasista... one of my fav is the place in ktown plaza. supposedly the place that opened up next to the food court in the galleria is its sister branch, but i prefer the ktown plaza one- just tastes better. in addition, most of the places i've been to/go to serve cucumber on top (which i ABS DETEST). hehe

                                      1. for those interested in the oc location - you might try little peking/peking restaurant
                                        8566 Westminster
                                        or call them and see if they have zhajiangmian.

                                        it won't be the korean style, but it will be good if they have it - they're from the right place.
                                        .

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Jerome

                                          yeah that place is very good

                                        2. For years, the family has been going to Dragon (aka Yong Goong) on Sundays and the past few times we've been, service has been horrible. I mean we ask for bahp and ggakdoogi 5 times and then my father has to make a sarcastic remark in Korean to finally get the banchan.

                                          Last week, my friends suggested House of Joy in Glendale and Young King (Yon Gyong) on Olympic in K-Town. Looks like YK is highly regarded, how is HoJ?

                                          9 Replies
                                          1. re: pdjy

                                            House of Joy has okish JJM and jjam pong. The dishes differ in taste somewhat on different days. I'm guessing they rotate their cooks or something. Overall decent chinese korean restaurant for glendale. Actually it might be the only one in glendale. It has branches elsewhere including Victorville.

                                            1. re: pdjy

                                              young king's JJM is ok, its nothing spectacular....but i do like their young king beef, its pretty good (thats why i like young king)

                                              1. re: Lau

                                                Hi Lau,

                                                Ever since two of my favorite JJM restaurants closed down years ago, I've not found a good replacement. Where is your favorite JJM restaurant in L.A. / O.C.? :) Thanks.

                                                1. re: exilekiss

                                                  exilekiss - funny enough the place i used to really like in ktown closed down a few years, so i too have been looking for a new place (unfortunately I'm usually in NY, so i dont have as much time as i'd like)

                                                  i tried Mandarin House at the Koreatown Plaza in LA a few months ago and it was pretty decent although i was a bit hungover and all i wanted was some JJM and tang soo yook, so everything tasted good to me at that point

                                                  I've been told that Peking Gourmet in Garden Grove (not to be confused w/ Peking Restaurant, which is good greasy northern chinese although not sure if they serve JJM) is supposed to be pretty good, but I haven't tried it myself, so I can't recommend it until I try it myself

                                                  btw u don't happen to have had a good chinese version? I get it sometimes at A&J's in Irvine...its not bad although the sauce is a bit more dry than i prefer

                                                  1. re: Lau

                                                    Best Kept secret in Ktown.

                                                    Chui Sung Roo has a special on their JJM at $2.99..

                                                    It's not the best JJM in the world, but its a kick ass spot for lunch working on a tight budget.

                                                    http://www.ktownlove.com/zbxe/45486

                                                    P.S. I second Heungragak, Young King and that joint in Koreatown Plaza 1st floor that escapes my mind atm

                                                    P.S.S. I think the place in koreatown plaza served their JJM with cucumbers??It's been awhile...

                                                    1. re: Lau

                                                      Hi Lau,

                                                      Thanks. Unfortunate to hear that you, too, are looking for a new replacement.

                                                      For a Chinese version? I don't get to try it enough (maybe Ipse, Chandavkl, raytam and others might know). But I do remember that 101 Noodle Express and Noodle House (Mian Hsiang Yuan) and Mandarin Deli all make a version far superior to the A&J in Irvine, IMHO.

                                                2. re: pdjy

                                                  just a wee fwiw
                                                  young king on olympic is also called yanjing in chinese, a poetic name for beijing.

                                                  1. re: Jerome

                                                    Hi Jerome,

                                                    Would Young King be your favorite JJM restaurant (Korean-Chinese style)? Thanks.

                                                    1. re: exilekiss

                                                      unsure. there was a really good place for the korean-chinese style on 8th st south side of the street. can't remember the name.
                                                      to be fair, if i go for korean, i tend to go for soon dubu, or other dishes = love bibim bahp and al bahp and those kinds of things. not so much for the korean-chinese. But it is tasty.

                                                3. The "place in the Koreatown Galleria food court (olympic/western)" is called Jin Heung Gak (aka Mandarine House). Actually there are at least 3 branches of JHK in Ktown. The original one on 8th St. The other in Ktown Plaza. They are not "high end" at all but dependable.

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: jblee

                                                    Does anyone know if there are any places in Orange County that serves good JJM? LA is too far to drive for just JJM.

                                                    1. re: Maddysdaddy

                                                      JJM was never meant to be a "high-end" menu item.

                                                      For a good dark-sauce (i.e. more Korean than Chinese) version, try King Dragon in Cerritos - it's run by Koreans who used to live in Northeastern China.
                                                      13333 South St.
                                                      Cerritos, CA 90703
                                                      (562) 924-3223

                                                      A relatively old original post, by the way...

                                                      1. re: Maddysdaddy

                                                        There's a small Korean-chinese place called Ching in the mini food court next to the Tustin/Irvine Freshia market on Red Hill.

                                                    2. best ja jyang myun by far is the hole in the wall on Olympic and Vermont in the same shopping mall as Nak Won and Hodori. absolutely delicious. Much better than Dragon in my opinion. Meals at the Dragon for some reason always upsets my stomach.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: songsta

                                                        That place has kick ass jjam ppong, JJM was just ok imo

                                                        1. re: songsta

                                                          I just tried this place on Olympic & Vermont and it was just OK. The sauce was good but the noodle looked & tasted like spaghetti pasta. Is there any place that make their own noodles with their JJM?

                                                        2. Mandarin House.... the best

                                                          1. alert - excellent Chinese not korean style Zhajiang mian

                                                            at
                                                            Qingdao Bread Food (qingdao mian shi i think) on Garfield, 301 n, next door to yungui, across the street from the mall with Giang-nan.

                                                            LIMITED menu. Also - lu-jiao. Stuffed shandong pan-fried-ish dumplings served as a pinwheel cake - my understanding, qingdao specialty.

                                                            cooks are from Shandong. Hostess from Taiwan. Everyone is very nice.

                                                            zhajiang mian the way to go. Mantou are too big for my taste.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: Jerome

                                                              Oh yeah, I also went there like 3 months ago and liked it a lot! Just forgot to report back to this board 'cuz life got too busy (sorry folks).

                                                              In any case, agree with Jerome about Qingdao Bread Food.

                                                            2. I grew up eating JJM at Young King and I still love it there, but now I make it at home. Its not that hard. There is a korean blogger living in Canada that blogs recipes including one for JJM. Her name is Maanghi. Look her up on You tube. And with all the korean markets in town you shouldn't have a problem finding all the ingredients.