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Category Archives: Koreatown

Korea Blog: What Jonathan Gold Understood About Korea

Even after I left Los Angeles for Seoul, I kept reading Jonathan Gold. Few who appreciate Los Angeles, no matter where in the world they live, could ignore what his restaurant reviews said about the city as a whole. On my last visit there earlier this year, I got into a conversation with a couple […]

Korea Blog: How Anthony Bourdain Revealed Korea — and Los Angeles’s Koreatown

“Anthony Bourdain.” “Anthony Bourdain Osaka Bar.” “Anthony Bourdain Osaka Hanshin Tigers Bar.” “アンソニーボーディン大阪阪神タイガース居酒屋.” I Googled all these search terms, and no small number of variations on them, one afternoon in a coffee shop at Gimpo International Airport. Soon to catch a flight to Osaka, my favorite city in Japan, I’d just found out that Toracy, my […]

A Los Angeles Primer: Koreatown

  “So they put chapulines in their kimchi?” a friend in Mexico City asked about my neighborhood. I do hold out hope that eateries in Koreatown, the district of Los Angeles it makes the most (and the least obvious) sense for me to live in, will one day offer its fermented cabbage topped by roasted […]

The shingle’s out

Soot Bull Jeep has fast become my go-to joint for friends who visit me in Koreatown filled with curiosity about this “Korean barbecue” stuff. Repeated endorsements from no less a food luminary than Jonathan Gold got me in the door in the first place. “Dinner at Soot Bull Jeep is an atavistic thing,” he writes, […]

Katherine Yungmee Kim: Los Angeles’ Koreatown

You see these thin, sepia-toned “Images of America” books for sale everywhere in Los Angeles. Each one covers a different corner of the city: Bel-Air, Little Tokyo, Chinatown, Boyle Heights, Palms, Historic Filipinotown, etc. I’ve even flipped through more than one volume on the old Pacific Electric streetcar system that would eventually become an integral […]

Four views from my rooftop

At Psychanaut (“a portmanteau of “psychonaut” [mind-explorer], “cha” [茶/tea], and “chan” [禪/zen buddhism]”), my friend Nick writes about the adventures he’s having after a recent move to Taipei. He drinks mango juice, studies Chinese, plays guitar at open mics, searches for tea houses, haunts jazz clubs, takes trips to Hong Kong and Seoul, eats turnip […]

Stop, stop, the New Yorkers will hear

After moving to Los Angeles, I found myself woken up on Saturdays and Sundays by a woman out on the street repeatedly singing, with a faintly surreal rare-bird intonation, the phrase, “Tamales! Y champurado!” In Mexico City, I discovered the filling wonders of a breakfast of tamales and champurado. (We actually drank strawberry atole, but […]

Diario de Los Angeles

[Might as well stick to the format for a while. Seems to work.] I have friends here who insist that, despite the surface noise, not much in the way of culture really goes on in Los Angeles. While I suppose I should defer, to some extent, to their seniority in the city, I did fly […]