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Sep 10, 2013 11:27 PM

Which is Better: Kam Sen or H Mart

For anyone who's been to both, are the freah foods better at Kam Sen or H Mart? I'm specifically looking for meats and seafood, but other things may have interest.
Thank you!

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    1. re: wincountrygirl

      It's in White Plains in the same "mall" as the DMV.

    2. I prefer H Mart, but I don't buy meat or fish. However, I think they have fabulous produce at really good prices. Great selection, really fresh (prob due to fast turnover).

      BTW, their homemade fresh mozzarella is some of the best.

      I don't like Kam Sen because it is limited in the items I would buy, and I never find a compelling reason to go. And I hate the parking.

      4 Replies
      1. re: mrsdebdav

        Yes, the parking is terrible at Kam Sen.

        1. re: mrsdebdav

          Wow. Their homemade fresh mozzarella is "some of the best"? I wasn't aware that they had mozzarella, and that they have homemade is so surprising. I will have to look next time I am there. Where is it located in the store?

          1. re: roxlet

            Walk in, head to your right and go towards the back. They have the water floating kind (which I haven't bought) and the wrapped in saran kind, which is what I buy. LMK if you try it, what you think of it.

            1. re: mrsdebdav

              Yes, I'll take a look next time.

        2. I've had a bad experience buying seafood at H-Mart and have heard others with similar complaints. But the meat at H-Mart is good, probably better on the whole than Kam Sen.

          3 Replies
          1. re: chipmonger

            What was your bad seafood experience? What about the others you mention?

            I've not bought much seafood from H-Mart. But a few weeks ago they did pack my lobsters in plastic and they were dead by the time I got home. I have to tell the manager that they need to properly pack live items.

            I have had no problems other than that with anything from H-Mart and I don't go to Kam Sen anymore. Quality at H-Mart is fantastic for meats and produce. Sometimes I have found their steaks to be at almost prime quality with unbelievable marbling, but at low prices.

            1. re: JMF

              In my case, it was sea scallops that were not fresh at all, and tasted of chlorine. Someone else mentioned to me also same experience of lack of freshness, but I don't remember which seafood it was.

              As I said before, the meat is great at H-Mart and they have many non-asian products, so more general shopping is a possibility there. I am also a great fan of their fresh, store-made kimchee. Can't get that at Kam Sen.

              But I have had better experiences buying seafood at Kam Sen at reasonable prices, for example live dungeness crab. And you can get more exotic chinese ingredients at Kam Sen that will not be available at the korean-oriented H-Mart.

              1. re: chipmonger

                H Mart and Golden Village (just south of H Mart on Central), and the Japanese markets also on Central near H'dale Ave are a trove of Asian ingredients. We are so lucky!

          2. I have no idea where these places are, but I assume you figure that anybody who responds does know. Vague posts really don't help on a board that covers all of NY except the city

            1 Reply
            1. re: trakman

              H mart is in Hartsdale and the other in White Plains. I agree.

            2. H Mart seems a little cleaner and the parking is better. (Parking is the worst thing about Kam Sen for H Mart is a little closer to me though not much). H Mart is always giving out free samples. Their prepared food section is good, not great. The H Mart Café is really good in that they have HUGE bowls of soup for $5 bucks or so. You get a choice of Japanese, Chinese or Korean menus. I ordered what I thought would be a very spicy Korean soup but I thought it could have been a lot hotter (spicier). Still good though.

              The thing I like about Kam Sen is that they have a variety of different things like scallion pancakes, shrimp with the head etc. in their eat-in café. (You can also get a pre-cooked Peking Duck there) Kam Sen's frozen seafood department seems to have a larger variety of shrimp with the head on (prob is, it is usually ina 4 lb box which is hard to use up).

              H Mart also has shrimp with the head on, but you can choose how much you want as they scoop it into a bag for you and weigh it.

              I like both actually and the parking is the only thing that sucks about Kam Sen (it's like $3.50 to park in that lot).

              6 Replies
              1. re: jcmods

                At Kam Sen I park on the street on the side by McDonald's. I rarely have a problem getting a spot so it only costs 50 cents or maybe 75 cents. I am usually in and out of there in 30 minutes or so.

                1. re: valerie

                  I agree. Great if you can get it.

                  1. re: jcmods

                    Did Kam Sen stop validating? It's been a couple of months since I've been there, but I've always been able to get parking validation at checkout. Usually plenty of parking on the upper level, then you can take the elevator down.

                    1. re:

                      I had no idea you could validate parking. That would certainly make a huge difference to me.

                    2. re: jcmods

                      Seems the prices have gone up on the soup to more like $8.99 but it is still really good. We ordered a very spicy noodle dish off the Chinese menu. It was $16.00 but is meant for two people to share. It definitely warmed me up all over -- good because the AC was on full blast -- but I could have added more sirracha to it. I wish I lived closer so that I could go there all the time. I really want to try all of their dishes.