July 22, 2014

Honey Pig

"Honey Pig" in Korean.  

As a recent Eater article points out, there are a plethora of Korean barbecue places in Los Angeles, probably more than any other place in the world (Korea, included).  Some are all-you-can-eat (AYCE), others serve high-quality meats, but the common thread is the arguable novelty (?) of cooking your own meat in between feasting in between gulps of Hite or soju.  But no one seems to really mind that most of these Korean establishments have poor service and that cooking your meat takes more effort than expected.  No, the concept of chowing down on fatty meat always seems to win.  And at Honey Pig, if you pig out (and spend enough money), you get a pig lighter that shoots flames from its nostrils!

Each round table has a round grill in the center.

Kimchi and Kongnamul muchim (seasoned soy beans) sizzling on the grill.

A variety of sauces and lettuce leaves to wrap the meat and veggies.

"Honey Pig. We will serve you well/ carefully." 

Classic dipping sauces: Denjang (fermented soy bean paste) (left) and ssamjang (denjang + gochujang (spicy pepper paste)) (right).

Let the kimchi (fermented cabbage) and bean sprouts fully cook.

Thinly-sliced Beef Brisket

These slices of meat cook really fast so keep a close eye on them.  Dip them in any of the various sauces and wrap them in lettuce or dduk (rice paper wrapping).

Pork Belly, lightly salted and peppered, but thickly sliced.

At the end of the meal, they add leftover veggies and rice onto the grill and mix gochujang to create delicious fried rice.  It's like dinner #2!

Honey Pig is not an AYCE (m)eatery nor is it the best of the bests, but it's open late (until 11pm M-Sat and until 1am on Sun), lively, and provides a good taste/ glimpse of how most Korean barbecue restaurants in Koreatown LA function.  Plus, they offer other items on the menu such as noodles and soondubu (tofu stew). For those reasons alone, it's worth a visit.

[Obvious] P.S. - Get the pork.  Nom nom.
P.P.S. - There is no English sign outside, so look for the sign with pigs.
P.P.P.S. - They speak English, but like at most Korean restaurants, it's going to supremely help if you have a person who speaks Korean in your group.

Honey Pig on Urbanspoon

cuisine: Korean
location: Koreatown LA
hours: M-Sat: 11am-11pm; Sun: 11am-1am
website: { yelp }
parking: Street or valet ($2)
attire: Casual
notes: Don't wear your favorite clothing items because most likely, you'll leave the restaurant smelling like barbecue meat/ pork.


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