Namu Gaji: A User’s Guide
New Korean American Cuisine | Farm to Table | Korean Soju | Wood-Laced Interior
Brunch: okonomiyaki, a crispy savory pancake with kimchi and cabbage bonito
Dinner: mia ayam, handmade noodles with chicken, broth, and sweet soy
To share: dumplings with shiitake mushroom, dashi, butter, and nori
Unpasteurized Asahi, a Japanese lager
Chum churum, a light, easy-drinking sweet-potato soju from Korea
Dewazakura “tobiroku,” a crisp and dry sparkling sake
The Ingredients: The three brothers behind Namu Gaji source most of their Chinese herbs and produce from their own East Bay Namu farm, as well as local artisan producers such as La Tercera and Heirloom Organics.
Where to Sit: Pull up a stool at the long, solid-wood-slab community table, or grab a seat at the window-facing bar.
While You’re Waiting
Marvel at the winding sculpture over the community table, a fitting centerpiece considering that namu gaji is Korean for "wooden branch."
Peek in on Chef Dennis Lee tweaking the daily changing menu in the open kitchen.
Take-out is only available during lunch.
For dietary restrictions beyond vegetarianism and gluten-aversions, call 24 hours in advance so the kitchen can accommodate you.
Leave extra time for parking if you’re coming for dinner, or use one of the valet services along Valencia Street.
While You’re in the Neighborhood
Before: Check out the paintings and sculptures at Creativity Explored (3245 16th Street), a gallery dedicated to working with artists with developmental disabilities.
After: Keep the evening going with drinks at The 500 Club (500 Guerrero Street), an eclectic neighborhood dive that keeps the locals coming back with bacon bloodys, a popular jukebox, and karaoke.