SRQ Review | September 2021
Do you still have to watch Someone feed Phil on Netflix, where Phil Rosenthal tastes real Korean food and shares cultural stories and customary cuisine based on ancient agricultural and nomadic traditions (evolved through centuries of social, political and environmental change)? In Seoul, South Korea, he eagerly tries tteok-bokki, feasts on crab and gobbles up fried chicken with K-pop star Eric Nam. Most of us can’t afford to fly more than 32 hours in South Korea just for a bite to eat, but luckily these local stars are the second best and closest to craving. a hot pot of steamed short grain rice and a shot of kimchi with cold sake. Take yours gochujang and take a seat in one of those Korean family restaurants where geography doesn’t mean anything.
Photograph by Wyatt Kostygan
Kore, a new concept of Asian restaurant created by the owners of JPAN Sushi & Grill is coming soon. This first restaurant on the market will offer a Korean barbecue at the table, as well as an upscale sushi bar and cocktail bar. “Kore will deliver … unique dishes that diners would likely find in major metropolitan cities like New York and San Francisco,” said Daniel Dokko, founder of JPAN and Kore. “I am delighted to launch this concept in such a united community. ” Coming soon to downtown Waterside Place, Lakewood Ranch.
Charlie’s BulGoGi, a passing family food truck became a successful showcase in 2018. Charlie’s has become a benchmark in the neighborhood for Korean barbecue enthusiasts. At BulGoGi, the meats are marinated for at least 12 hours and sometimes up to 20 hours, soaked in the homemade combination of Korean red pepper paste, sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, wine. of rice, onions and apples. Something like too spicy, but husband and wife co-owners Charlie and Soomi Chi are good at tempering the heat of American palates. “Korean food is a lot like Thai or Mexican food,” Charlie explains, “It’s hot, but there’s always a lot of flavor. ” 4567 Bee Ridge Rd., Sarasota, 941-554-4806, charliesbulgogi.com.
Korean Restaurant Shilla, family owned and operated by the Yi family. The Yi have been cooking authentic Korean food for over 40 years and have brought their beloved dishes, such as Bulgogi, Galbi, Bibimbab, Bibim Naengmyeon, and Japchae, to Sarasota. Hailing from Gyeonggi Province near Seoul, the family has been in the culinary world for many decades, with the grandmother working in the markets (offering a variety of popular street food) and then passing the tradition down to her son, who is now running Shilla. 501 N Beneva Rd. # 240, Sarasota, 941-366-9700.
Korean BBQ and Sushi K-Nam, After operating a local Korean barbecue food truck in Sarasota for the past three years, Hung Kook (Justin) Nam and his wife, Soung-Ja Nam, expanded their menu and opened this new concept restaurant in November 2020. Serving up sushi, Korean barbecues and fusion dishes make this the perfect place for everyone to enjoy. With over 15 years of culinary experience in Korea and the United States, Nam passionately presents its vision of combining Korean and Asian flavors to our multicultural region. 3440 Clark Road, Sarasota, 941-312-6469, knamkoreanrestaurant.com.
SSAM BAR, one of the pioneers who came on the scene in Sarasota to expand the city’s missing Korean scene, cultivating a menu rich in classic peninsula platters. Former owner of Bradenton’s Sam Oh Jung, Yup Namgoong opened SSAM in 2017 to bring a fusion of Japanese-style sushi and Korean dishes. Since opening, Namgoong mentioned that a large percentage of customers continue to order more Korean than sushi. 1303 N Washington Blvd., Sarasota, 941-312-6264.
Sam Oh Jung, a longtime staple in Bradenton for no-frills Korean cuisine. Sam Oh Jung must be doing something right, with people frequenting the premises for the “Box Dinner” specials on the menu. Most of the dishes remain unchanged from when the original Sam first opened. “Not many people know about cooking,” said Sam Oh Jung manager Hieu Nguyen, “and it’s very difficult to do if you don’t know what you are” doing. 6032 14th St. W, Bradenton, 941-755-3568.