Best Korean on Bloor West for First Timers
I like Il Bun Ji http://www.chow.com/restaurants/88437...
but it depends on what you are looking for. I think the karaoke is upstairs and so is segregated from the dining. Works for me.
I live in the area, but started going there with my family as my father has been to Korea numerous times and loves their food.
The ambience is bright but private with many booths walled off with screens. The booths are on the snug side, so if you are a bloated fatboy you might have a bit of a squeeze. Tables are low but not Japanese low. None of the tables I have sat at had a grill.
Service is gracious and efficient. The table is presented with an array of small condiments, vegetables, pickles, tofu, and of course kimchi with every meal. The menu is huge with lots of options for appetizers, combinations, or a la carte. It is no problem to get an assortment of what you want.
Most of the dinners come with Miso soup. I have tended to stick to some basic entrees like bulgoki which is very good and a very generous portion. I usually order a mix of maki rolls and sashimi to share and some tempura for the faint of heart. The sushi is good to excellent, and probably the variation depends more on the fish available that day than anything else. It is very reasonably priced. The tempura is usually light and crispy although on occasion has been a bit greasy. The quality of vegetables and seafood under the batter is prime.
I have taken 2 year olds and 72 year olds, people who love Korean food and people who think Wendy's is "spicy" and there is something for everyone.
The first few times I was there it was astonishing when I got the check. Far less than i expected. I don't think the prices have gone up much but my behaviour has changed and I probably order more extras to share. Still very reasonable.
If you want to have the experience of grilling at your table or consider karaoke part of the meal then there are other choices within a two block radius, but I keep going back to Il Bun Ji
Il Bun Ji Restaurant
668 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6G1L2, CA