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K-town lunch with parents?

I'm meeting my parents for lunch near 32nd street tomorrow, and I thought we'd go to one of the K-town restaurants. Does anyone have a recommendation for a place that's pleasant to sit, but (possibly) not crazy crowded? Somewhere with good bibimbap, and also BBQ. It could anywhere between 36th and 32nd. Thank you!

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  1. I almost always go to Gahm Mi Oak. It shouldn't be too crowded. They have most traditional dishes and the sulong tang (oxtail bone broth with noodles) is excellent.

    2 Replies
    1. re: bnowell

      Guess this is too late for the OP, but it may benefit future readers. There's no BBQ at Gahm Mi Oak and I would say menu is very limited. I once went there with my dad and had to walk out because there was nothing for him to eat as he doesn't eat red meat and shellfish.

      1. re: bnowell

        I haven't been to Gaonnuri but I have a feeling that I'd trust his (or her?) review over Serious Eats. Love the site but I don't always agree with their picks.

        ETA: Sorry, meant to place this post responding to foodwhisperer.

      2. Gaonnuri is hands down the best Korean restaurant in New York. Weekday lunch special is $20 and you have a choice of either Galbi (BBQ beef short ribs), Bulgogi (Stir fried sliced beef), or Sable Fish set, each of which is served with rice, side dishes, and a choice of bean paste + beef soup or kimchi + pork stew.

         
         
        3 Replies
        1. re: kosmose7

          Interesting... Serious Eats gave it a very mixed review, particularly for the non-BBQ dishes:
          http://newyork.seriouseats.com/2012/1...

          1. re: kathryn

            So far I have tried seafood pancake, kimchi stew, bean paste soup, short rib soup, yook gae jang (spicy beef soup), stir-fried octopus, spicy cold noodles and cold noodles in soup, as well as BBQ. There were hits and misses, but even less satisfying dishes were a few notches above most K-town restaurants. And I am a Korean. :)

            1. re: kathryn

              That review was terrible. However, I think Kosmose is a good judge of food. I have also heard good things about Gaonnuri. It is in an interesting location as well. I will try it for sure. Seems I've been stuck at 32 East 32nd St ( NY Kom Tang Soot Bul Kalbi) for consistently good Korean food including BBQ. I need a change though.

          2. I haven't been to Gaonnuri, but my parents really enjoyed Don's Bogam when I took them there a few years ago (sadly, both are now deceased - not the fault of the restaurant, of course). I haven't had bibimbap there, but their BBQ - especially the chili-marinated galbi - is very good, and the other dishes I've had there have also been quite good.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Pan

              Wow , you lost both of your parents so closely apart? I am sorry to hear.
              Sorry, it's not relevant to the topic...

              1. re: Monica

                Thank you, Monica. I remembered my parents today when I went to Nom Wah for a dim sum lunch for the first time since probably the 1980s, with my girlfriend and a close friend of the family. My parents started taking me there when I was 4 in 1969 and inculcated in me a love for Chinese food that has done nothing but grown to this day.

                1. re: Pan

                  I went to Nom Wah back in late 60's and early 70's. They were pretty much the only dim sum in Chinatown. And if I remember correctly they only served dim sum on Sunday or weekends. There were some bakeries , one place was Koon Shing, but they only had cha siu bao and a few other items. It was a time when the Movie theaters , Music Palace and Sun Sing theatre showed mostly Kung Fu movies and families brought their lunch with them into the theatre. The audience was at least 95% Chinese.

                  1. re: foodwhisperer

                    I had forgotten about the movie theaters. That seems quite a long time ago, and in a way, it is. In the early 70s, my family also frequented Foo Joy on Division St. and a restaurant right off of Confucius Sq. on East Broadway that served Manchurian hot pot. That was the perfect lunch when it was 20 degrees outside. In the late 70s is I believe when we started going to New York Noodletown, and I've been going there ever since.

            2. Check out Cho Dang Gol on 35th. They don't have grills for BBQ, but the stir fry dishes and casseroles are pretty good and the bibimbap is very good.