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Korean Food Yonge St. & Finch

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fat potato Jun 22, 2008 06:12 PM

My wife is about half way through her preganancy with our third. This time around, she is craving the Korean specialty "dol sot bi bim bop." If anyone reading this does not know what it is (which I seriously doubt) it is rice topped with hot sauce, julienned vegetables, beef and a sunny side up egg served in a heated stone bowl. You mix it all together and the heat of the bowl gives the rice touching it a nice crisp crust. There seem to be a plethora of Korean places on Yonge around Finch. Any suggestions on some good ones? Other useful info would be on how family friendly they are, since the two older siblings often come to dinner with us (when no sitter is available).

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  1. sumashi RE: fat potato Jun 22, 2008 07:38 PM

    I like Nakwon's ... it's on the south-west corner of Yonge and Finch...
    They would be okay with kids and you can get your own private booth with a curtain!
    They serve a lot of banchan with their meals. BTW, i looooove nurungji (the crispy rice crust) as well!!!!!

    8 Replies
    1. re: sumashi
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      msprnt RE: sumashi Jun 23, 2008 06:25 AM

      is nakwan's in the same strip as soban? is nakwon the same type of food as owl of minerva and oh geul boh geul?... i've been looking to try different korean restaurants on yonge ... and want to expand my experiences (and tastes too!) ....i've been to sariwon, ehwa, and the above mentioned ...

      i'm interested in specific dishes you'd recommend as well!

      1. re: msprnt
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        Humbucker RE: msprnt Jun 23, 2008 06:31 AM

        I think Nakwon is a lot better than Oh Geul Boh Geul. I've had the gamja tang at both and Nakwon's broth is much richer and more flavorful. Also, the service at Oh Geul Boh Geul was awful. They took one of our orders incorrectly and we had to insist that the dish they gave us was wrong. Also, they started clearing our table before we were done eating in order to get us out of there as soon as possible.

        1. re: msprnt
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          fat potato RE: msprnt Jun 23, 2008 07:21 AM

          We saw Soban. I would be interested on hearing your thoughts about the place.

          1. re: msprnt
            sumashi RE: msprnt Jun 23, 2008 07:56 AM

            Is Soban the one RIGHT on the corner (where the bank used to be)?? If so, yes.. it's right beside it... I tried Soban once before and don't recommend it for Korean food.. I guess it would be an okay bubbletea type of place to go to, but their food wasn't good.
            Nakwon has a pretty wide range of food so it would be a cool place to check out. I like their dol soht bibimbap, haemul pajeon (seafood pancake) and they have an amazing goat stew called yeomsotang, which I haven't seen at any other Korean restaurant. Has anybody seen it anywhere else around Toronto?
            I've actually been in Korea for the past 5 months and haven't as yet found a place that sells yeomsotang either!! I've asked around and apparently goat meat isn't popular (except with the very old people, so I'm told).

            1. re: sumashi
              Royaljelly RE: sumashi Jun 23, 2008 08:15 AM

              I've had the opposite experience at Nakwon... waitress was disinterested and slow, Kalbi was under marinated. My wife had a soup dish (forget which one) and seemed ok. I haven't been back since we were so turned off by that once experience.

              We still prefer Oh Geul, esp. with their free parking in the back, and plenty of banchan sidedishes. Menu is probably not as extensive as Nakwon. Service can really break down, esp during busy hours. Luckily we haven't had mistaken orders yet, but I'm sure it's bound to happen eventually.

              If you want a nice, clean place to bring the little ones for decent Dolsot bibim bap, you could also try Han IL House on Steeles just West of Yonge (in the plaze with the TD bank, just across the st. from Cdn. Tire. They have small rooms as well so the little ones can run around in, also outdoor patio. Not as many sidedishes, but good deals between 11am - 3pm lunch specials.

              1. re: Royaljelly
                sumashi RE: Royaljelly Jun 23, 2008 09:02 AM

                Oh, I don't argue that sometimes the waitresses working at Nakwon are pretty disinterested, but I'll still go there :) I'm sorry to hear you had such a bad experience! My friends and I like it there because they're open late.. til about 2am... longer if people are still there.
                I haven't been to Oh Geul, so I can't comment.

                1. re: Royaljelly
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                  Humbucker RE: Royaljelly Jun 23, 2008 08:59 PM

                  Korean service is rarely doting, or even attentive, but I was really shocked at what I experienced at Oh Geul. We weren't eating at a particularly leisurely pace, but they seemed to be determined to kick us out. At Nakwon, they were at least receptive once you got their attention. I'd definitely suggest you give Nakwon another shot, they have just as many banchan as Oh Geul (10) and the soups I've tried (gamja tang and yumso tang) were really flavorful.

                2. re: sumashi
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                  msprnt RE: sumashi Jun 23, 2008 08:34 AM

                  i agree with soban food.... it's not very good at all ... it's more of a bbt place..... and just hanging out with a few not-too-korean snacks.... it's a nicer place .... with flat screen tv's and "hipper" music....it is RIGHT at the southwest corner (most ppl tend to park at shoppers tho)

                  nakwon sounds good!..... haven't had goat stew, so i'd get that if i go!...

                  i find korean service comparable to chinese service (at least up in the hwy. 7 area), so i'm more than comfortable with the lack of interest from servers ... i actually like oh geul's service, even when they're busy ... since i speak to them in english (some can speak mando there) ... and i laugh and smile a lot ... it's more "homey" than the more modern places...

                  Han IL House, has a patio?!?.... gotta try that!... any other dishes to recommend other than bibim bap, royaljelly?

            2. hotsauce28 RE: fat potato Jun 23, 2008 10:23 AM

              I like Buk Chang soon tofu. On yonge, south of finch on the east side.
              good food, good service... so far..

              1 Reply
              1. re: hotsauce28
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                garlicandwingnut RE: hotsauce28 Jun 24, 2008 07:20 AM

                I like Buk Chong too. It is at the corner of Yonge and Drewry.

              2. m
                msprnt RE: fat potato Jun 24, 2008 07:20 AM

                i've heard of this korean "lounge" .... that is actually pretty decent for food and price... it's somewhere on yonge too i believe, but don't know the name/exact location.. does anyone know?

                apparently, they keep bringing banchan even if ure sitting there for a long time chatting away (esp. if you're younger)... anyone know of this place?

                4 Replies
                1. re: msprnt
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                  garlicandwingnut RE: msprnt Jun 24, 2008 08:38 AM

                  Most of the Koreans I have spoken to consider Sariwon (Yonge south of John west side) to be the best in the city. I agree.

                  Buk Chong might be the best deal. They have specials that 2 hungry people couldn't finish at $12.95 or $18.95 with 4 domestic beers!! Beat that!!

                  1. re: garlicandwingnut
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                    msprnt RE: garlicandwingnut Jun 24, 2008 09:38 AM

                    buk chong soon tofu has more than the 10 or so items?!?.. i didn't know they had the dish + 4 beers combo!.... not bad!...i've seen it at many other places, but not there.....

                    is sariwon known for it's bbq or other dishes? i went with my family that once and were not too impressed as we ordered non-bbq dishes....and it took exceedingly long ... especially considering most asian places are rather fast ...

                    1. re: msprnt
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                      garlicandwingnut RE: msprnt Jun 24, 2008 10:21 AM

                      Bbq is is big at Sariwon but I have only had other dishes. I've been 3 times but at non peak times like 9 pm so I got served fairly quickly.

                      1. re: garlicandwingnut
                        hotsauce28 RE: garlicandwingnut Jun 24, 2008 12:59 PM

                        Sariwon is known for bbq but is one of the most inconsistent restaurants.
                        I think they've changed owners a few times since they've opened. I took a client there a few weeks ago and they were brutal but was there again this past w/e and they were really good.

                        Just keep ringing the bell to get their attention.

                2. Wiley RE: fat potato Jun 24, 2008 11:48 AM

                  One really casual place where you don't need to worry about the kids is the food court at Galleria, Yonge n of Steeles. Believe it or not, I've found the pork bone soup, Bim bap, etc. to be of restaurant quality, and there are 3 or 4 outlets to choose from (there's one more past the main court) plus one Japanese booth. You pick what you want, pay at the cash, and watch for your number to come up when it's ready.

                  1. d
                    dory RE: fat potato Jun 25, 2008 06:03 PM

                    We've gone to the resto. just about 2 doors north of Cummer on the east side of Yonge, To Dam Gol? or something similar, There are clay pots in the window, Larger than it looks at first glance, there's seating in a room to the side. The kids were treated very kindly and we felt comfortable there, nice family atmosphere, not rushed. They did have the dish you wife craves.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: dory
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                      berbere RE: dory Jun 25, 2008 07:29 PM

                      another vote for To Dam Gol in the Yonge/Cummer area: consistent, reasonably priced and plenty of side dishes. I also think Sariwon is very inconsistent and don't really succeed in their attempt to be a higher end resto, esp when all their wait staff routinely avoid eye contact. Sariwon has been better in my experience at banquet/catering but for quality of food/freshness/variety, my vote still goes to Shilla, the place at Lawrence/Weston Rd.

                      in terms of food courts, I think the one at the newer H-Mart in Richmond HIll (Yonge/north of 16) is superior to the one at Galleria by far.

                      1. re: berbere
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                        jeff75 RE: berbere Jul 3, 2008 09:10 AM

                        Hi

                        Is H-Mart the name of a grocery store up there? Can you be a little more specific on the exact location?

                        Thanks

                        1. re: jeff75
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                          shir RE: jeff75 Jul 3, 2008 11:33 AM

                          H-Mart
                          9737 Yonge Street,
                          Richmond Hill, On
                          905-883-6200
                          www.hmartca.com

                    2. f
                      fat potato RE: fat potato Jul 1, 2008 10:51 AM

                      We went to Nakwon and were very pleased with the quality of the food. The service was as advertised, less than doting, but the food more than made up for any lack of attention. The servers did answer our questions as to "what is this delicious side dish?" and even did so in English. I give Nakwon two enthusiastic thumbs up and will be returning.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: fat potato
                        sumashi RE: fat potato Jul 2, 2008 08:07 AM

                        Cool.... so what dishes did you end up ordering?

                        1. re: sumashi
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                          fat potato RE: sumashi Jul 2, 2008 10:30 AM

                          We ended up getting the Bi Bim Bap and we tried a sizzling beef dish which came with some sort of tubular noodles (I wish I had written it down). Both were great. The real treat was the huge number of side dishes you got. My wife loved the glass noodles and the fish cake. I really liked the potato and the green beans. We've had the standard radish dish but these were new and definitely worth the trip. Next time we're gonna try To Dam Gol

                          1. re: fat potato
                            pescatarian RE: fat potato Jul 3, 2008 11:50 AM

                            You should also try Buk Chang Dong Soon Tofu. I haven't been to the one at Yonge and Finch, but I have been to the one on Bloor and the dolsot bi bim bap was the best I've had so far (including Nakwon). The restaurant is nothing fancy, but good food.

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