A different Korean BBQ experience at Kang Ho Dong Baekjeong in New York
I’ve been to Baekjeong in L.A., but since my cousin who lives in New York had never been to either, we decided to dine here for dinner. The hubs and I were still pretty stuffed from our lunch at Pok Pok, but we couldn’t help ourselves and over-ordered.
In addition to the usual beef combo consisting of short ribs (galbi), ribeye, and flank steak, we also ordered the beef tartare and “lunchbox,” which is basically your kim chi fried rice shaken up in a box before served.
The meat is grilled table-center, and there are pockets on the side to heat up your steamed egg custard and cheese corn, both of which are comforting accompaniments to soothe your palate. I also love the mung bean sprout and scallion salad, as it adds crunch and brightness to the bites between succulent meat.
The tartare was good, but a bit overkill for a party of three who wasn’t particularly starving. It’s a good idea to go with a group of four or more, and you should definitely go hungry. There’s a bowl of stew that comes with the combo to help wash down your meal.
Baekjeong means “butcher” in Korean, and Kang Ho Dong is a comedian wrestler celebrity. How the two go together, I don’t know.
Months later, I actually met the chef, Deuki Hong, at a pop-up event he did in Houston to promote his new cookbook, Koreatown. He’s vibrant and enthusiastic—just like the restaurant at which he oversees.
The wait can be long, but you can put your name and number on the list, go to a nearby bar or cafe, and have a pre-dinner beverage. Once inside, it’s dark, loud, and energetic, so not a place to go on a romantic date, but a good spot for group gatherings and fun times.
Kang Ho Dong Baekjeong
1 E. 32nd St. (At 5th Ave.)
New York, NY 10016
Phone: +1 212 966-9839