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Aug 18, 2011 06:29 PM

Koream Bossam in Oakland?

I've been visiting Seoul on business, and have developed a love for bossam, the Korean cuisine featuring pork (often pork belly) and condiments that are wrapped in lettuce or cabbage.

Do any of Oakland's many Korean restaurants feature bossam?

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  1. I've never seen Korean barbecue served without leaves for wrapping. Ohgane serves lettuce, slightly pickled perilla leaves, and big rounds of what I think is thin-sliced pickled daikon.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston

      its not a barbecue dish. bossam is pork belly (usually) that has been steamed or slow-boiled until tender. the cooled pork is thinly sliced and its usually eaten with napa cabbage leaves that have been salted until pliable, and a panchan-relish made with shredded daikon. it is also often served with shucked raw oysters. i just checked the menus for jong ga house, ohgane, and sahn maru and i don't see it listed in any of theirs.

      but its extremely popular, so it has to be available somewhere. anyone else?

      1. re: augustiner

        I've had it before at Pyung Chang Tofu House on Telegraph. It was only ok. I probably shouldn't have ordered it in a tofu place anyway. They have it at Casserole House down the street too but I haven't tried it there. Sahn Maru also has it on their menu.

        Sahn Maru Korean BBQ
        4315 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

        Pyung Chang Tofu House
        4701 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

        Casserole House
        4301 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

        1. re: augustiner

          It's on the first page of the menu at Jong Ga.

          I'm pretty sure I've seen it elsewhere. I had it at Gaboja, since closed, didn't much care for it so haven't looked for it again. Reportedly Pyung Chang has it.

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            i obviously have forgotten how to read. thanks for the correction!

      2. My association for Bossam is that it includes pork (described sometimes as Korean bacon?), raw oysters, and some other items along with the cabbage or lettuce wrappings. Is that what you are looking for?

        I've ordered it from the menu at Seoul Garden in SF's Japantown. Listed as "Jaeyukgul Bosam". I know that's not an answer for Oakland, but did want to mention that it's a menu item in the area. I'm not expert enough to rate Seoul Garden's version.

        I noticed that it's not that common around here. A search turned up more places down in Santa Clara. I've also noticed that some places serve it with rice cake wraps (dduk) instead.

        Seoul Garden
        1635 Post St, San Francisco, CA 94115

        5 Replies
        1. re: jman1

          I believe jaeyukgul is grilled spicy pork.

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            Grilled spicy pork can be Jaeyuk Gui (with i not L)

            I've seen it more commonly listed as Daeji Bulgogi

          2. re: jman1

            In Korea, Bossam is not the typical dish at any restaurants. Koreans look for the restaurants specialized for it. Typical Bossam has three basic components: sliced boiled meat (almost always pork), fresh shredded radish kimchi, salted napa cabbage leaves. Sometimes Oyster is added. You put Kimchi and meat on the leaf of cabbage and make a wrap (Ssam).
            The most common parts of pork used are shoulder and belly.
            Kaeyuk means pork, and gul means oysters.
            This is a casual dish typically for drinking.
            I have not seen any decent version of Bossam in the Bay area.

            1. re: soyoungscanlan

              Have you tried any of the places that specialize in bossam in Santa Clara?

              1. re: Robert Lauriston

                Yes, I tried a few places. Overall quality of meat was not very good. When I find a good place, I will post it.