Kor-BQ specializes in Korean tacos, or "takos," whose myriad blasts of flavors seem to defy their simple construction. Marinated meats such as short rib, rib eye, and pork form the basis of these fusion delicacies, while a Korean fusion salsa and sesame seeds add the zesty kick. The tacos come three ways: with a cilantro and onion mix, dressed in lettuce slaw and drizzled with soy sauce vinaigrette, or "nude," a style that foregoes the fixings to avoid cilantro-shaped tan lines. Those who prefer to use a spoon instead of their hands can find similar sustenance in the rice bowls, which feature hearty mixes of marinated meat, sautéed vegetables, clear glass noodles, and lettuce slaw with vinaigrette.
Named after the Korean word for meat, GOGHEE Korean BBQ Tacos began as a simple drive-thru shack, where guests could grab tofu tacos or Korean chili-sauce pork burritos inspired by equal parts Asian street food and no-frills Mexican fare. Now, owners Janice and Terry continue that tradition in a new permanent brick-and-mortar diner where they offer Kor-Mex fusion food, a combination of Korean BBQ and Mexican tortillas. Like the world’s most complicated bus system, their menu brings together three disparate parts of the globe, introducing American fries to crispy-spicy kimchi or Mexican carnitas to a ginger garlic marinade, as well as Korean BBQ's ginger-soy marinated meat accompanied by zesty soy-vinaigrette-dressed lettuce. Guests sample extras, such as the crispy tortilla chips and Korean chocolate-covered cracker sticks, or build their own plate of nachos, tacos, or salad with ingredients such as soy-marinated short rib, chili-kissed chicken, brown rice, and jalapeno salsa.
If you haven't heard of Da Won, it's not for a lack of quality. According to D Magazine, when the restaurant first opened in 2010, Korean-born chef-owner June Lee took all the money she might have spent on advertising and instead funneled it into buying the best beef she could find. This dedication to freshness translates into everything Lee serves, especially banchan, the small side dishes her restaurant is known for. Instead of prepping each small bowl of homemade kimchi, tofu, steamed eggs, and savory pancakes in the morning like many restaurants, Lee makes two batches a day, ensuring that what hits the dining table is never more than a few hours old. Along with sushi and hibachi dishes, the restaurant serves a multitude of soups, including a Soon Tofu soup beloved by D Magazine.
Most would agree that Dallas is more of a burger capital than Los Angeles. So it took a certain level of audacity for LA natives Ben and John Lee to think they could change the way Texans think about their beloved burgers. That is, however, exactly what they have done with LA Burger. Gathering inspiration from the Korean-Mexican fusions popularized by LA?s food trucks, the brothers stack burgers with Korean cabbage and smother them in teriyaki sauce. Their signature LA burger adds a fried egg and cheese for good measure.
Named for Seoul's famously fashionable district, Gangnam Sushi offers Japanese- and Korean-style fish dishes and cooked entrees. Manager Nick Kin explains to CultureMap Dallas how a touch of special sauce?"a spicy, red-colored sauce with a sour-sweetened flavor"?differentiates Korean sashimi from its Japanese counterpart. Teriyakis and tempuras share menu space with bulgogi and Korean barbecue, and sojus (a distilled Korean liquor) and sakes join domestic beers, spirits, and water-on-the-rocks on the drink list.
Savory and meaty Korean fare stars on the menu at Bulnanjib, where griddles crackle beneath octopus and short ribs with thick, peppery sauces. Diners start by sampling bites of seafood pancakes or dumplings, then take sips of imported Asian beers and Korean alcohol while choosing the rest of their meal. Hearty stews pour forth steam like robots trying to process the ending of The Giving Tree, and the earthy aroma of fermentation drifts from dishes of kimchi.