korean hot pot?
One of my most favorite things in the world is a good Mongolian, Sichuan, and Taiwanese style hot pot dinners. Examples of these would are Little Fat Sheep and Lu Gi.
However, something caught my eye as I was driving around Korea town one day... a sign somewhere that said something like "Korean Hot Pot." I am now kicking myself for not having noted the location.
Can anyone out there tell me more about Korean style hot pot and where I can try this?
I'm sure it is very different from the ones I've had, just as it is very different from shabu shabu.
Thanks for your help in expanding my culinary horizons!
Jun Gol can be found at many korean restaurants with bbq burners. It's closer to jigae (a thick stew-like soup that is served family style as opposed to in individual servings like the brothy soups that go next to the rice) than shabu shabu, the only difference being that jun gol is cooked at the table. They put a giant shallow pot (~12" or bigger) filled with various meats, veggies & noodles in a broth - usually the whole thing comes "assembled" in the pot as opposed to veggies & meats on the side like shabu shabu. As the ingredients get cooked, you ladle the soupy stew-like thing into individual bowls and eat it with rice & banchan. Usually requires 2 or more orders. Anyway, just go to any kbbq restaurant and ask if they have jun gol. I'd say about half the kbbq places do this.
While this is not Korean hotpots, banquisha did ask to help expand the culinary horizon. Here is my personal take on hotpot restaurants in the SGV.
1. Little Fat Sheep (Xiao Fei Yang) is my favorite place. In fact writing about it, I am thinking I must visit them this week. Usually I get their two flavor soups - one normal, the other spicy. But truth be told, I like the normal broth better than the spicy. A new addition has been their lunch time specials of meat, or seafood for a very reasonable price. Once the new dean of my Indian alma mater was visiting and I had to think of a vegetarian place to go. With the earlier dean, also a vegetarian, we had gone to the Happy Family Vegetarian restaurant, which was an unmitigated disaster. So I chose to take the new dean, who is 10x more adventurous in his tastes, to Little Fat Sheep, and we had the best vegetarian meal in a long time.
2. Mon Land hotpot - we have tried this place twice, and while it is passable, in my personal opinion falls far short of Little Fat Sheep. The broth is not as flavorful, and their items also seemed slightly limited in versatility. The last visit was several years ago, so I might be remembering things inaccurately.
3. Wok BBQ - this is a new place that opened up, and we went there once. I have to try it again soon. Their specialty seems to be a lot dried hotpot than 1 and 2, but it was very tasty. The hotpot we tried had lots of lotus root (you can't select the individual ingredients - they have pre-determined components amongst the few choices on their menu) and potatoes.
4. Lu Gi - I have tried this once, and found it not to my personal taste. The texture of their broth was very muddy and had one somewhat off-putting flavor component to it - almost like a slightly fishy taste which I found disagreeable. Probably that was my first and last visit.
5. Deerfield Garden - Jerome says this is quite different from Little Fat Sheep - but I have never tried it, even though it is across from 1. One of these days, I have to exercise free will and land up here instead of 1.
DEERFIELD GARDEN, 130 S ATLANTIC BLVD, 91754 MONTEREY PARK
LITTLE SHEEP, 120 S ATLANTIC BLVD, 91754, MONTEREY PARK
LU GI, 539 W VALLEY BLVD., SAN GABRIEL, CA 91776 (626) 457-5111
MONLAND HOTPOT CITY, 251 W. BENCAMP ST., SAN GABRIEL (626)289-4889
WOK BBQ, 910 E GARVEY AVE, MONTEREY PARK, CA - (626) 307-7176
120 S Atlantic Blvd, Monterey Park, CA 91754
Monland Hop Pot City
251 W Bencamp St Ste C, San Gabriel, CA 91776
Lu Gi Restaurant
539 W Valley Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776