Los Angeles’ Koreatown is the pinnacle of Korean cookery in the United States, without any doubt. The food offered is astonishingly delightful, making even the most obsessive foodies from Seoul awestruck at both its quality and quantity. It’s the perfect setup since this vibrant neighborhood has a lot of neon lights and stay open until late at night.
Most diners limit their Korean food offerings to all-you-can-eat barbecues. The good news is that you have a lot of choices if you want to taste regional specialties. These dishes are worth finding in Koreatown, as well as other areas in Los Angeles.
From cauldrons of spicy stews to seafood broths with knife-cut noodles, you’ll find a lot of important Korean restaurants in Los Angeles. This list’s arrangement is from west to east.
Best Korean Restaurants in Los Angeles
1. Soban Restaurant
To start your meal, Soban has a lot of amazing banchan choices. Their menu has delicious raw crab that you can order in two forms: one has garlicky soy sauce and the other has thick, spicy red pepper sauce. If you’re looking for seafood, this Korean restaurant is your best choice since it’s their forte.
Their seafood best-sellers include their pan-fried fish and spicy braised black cod. If they’re available, make sure to order the special squid tossed with julienne vegetables. Soban also offers other specials written on the wall in Korean—ask your server what they are if you don’t understand the language.
As for their non-seafood specialty, you’re better off ordering the spicy beef short ribs. Yelp
Address: 4001 W Olympic Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90019
Contact Number: (323) 936-9106
2. Han Bat Shul Lung Tang
If you’re looking for good broths, Han Bat Shul Lung Tang restaurant is a legend. Their cloudy bone marrow broth is undeniably popular, alongside their tender slabs of brisket. The latter has different organ meats floating in the broth.
Their menu is simple since you can build a meal on your own. Use seasonings, kimchi, and rice. Finish it off by sprinkling green onions along with a dash of salt.
Address: 4163 W 5th St Los Angeles, CA 90020
Contact Number: (213) 383-9499
3. Hyesung Noodle House
Hyesung is a kalguksu specialist hailing from Seoul. They made a branch in Los Angeles, committed to becoming a simple, no-nonsense knife-cut noodle restaurant. With that, they only have four menu items, but each one is worth trying.
They have anchovy and chicken-based noodle soups. Aside from that, Hyesung offers scallion pancakes and sliced pork bossam. It’s a definite must-try if you’re in the city, especially if you’re a noodle lover.
Address: 125 N Western Ave #106, Los Angeles, CA 90004
Contact Number: (323) 745-5001
4. Jun Won Restaurant
This is a classic restaurant that serves a wide array of canon Korean food. Jun Won restaurant recently transferred and they’re now located along Western Avenue, which made it even brighter and cheery. As for the food, their menu remains consistent.
A lot of foodies say that Jun Won has some of the best bossam and spicy braised black cod in the city. It’s a great complement to their excellent banchan.
Address: 414 S Western Ave B, Los Angeles, CA 90020
Contact Number: (213) 383-8855
Zzamong is one of the more average Korean-Chinese casual restaurants in Korea. This establishment specializes in champong and jjajjangmyun. They also have black bean noodles as well as spicy seafood noodle soups.
But the rest of their menu is excellent, given their price. The tangy sweet and sour pork and the kung pao shrimp are a must-try. Yelp
Address: 4255 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90004
Contact Number: (213) 739-2747
6. Magal BBQ
Magal BBQ is one of Koreatown’s longstanding barbecue restaurants. They continue producing high-quality meat, complemented by their generous serving portions. Located along 8th street, this establishment stands to be a better restaurant compared to its South Korean counterparts.
This restaurant has rich, tender beef, as well as thick-cut slices of pork belly. If you’re hungry even after the meat parade, you can order the kimchi fried rice volcano. You’ll never go hungry in this Korean BBQ.
Address: 3460 W 8th St Los Angeles, CA 90005
Contact Number: (213) 383-1909
7. Hangari Kalguksu
Hangari Kalguksu has some of the finest noodles in the city, knife-cut and simply gorgeous. With this, the restaurant often has a longer wait time due to the sheer number of customers. Aside from the noodles, you’ll enjoy the dumplings and the banchan starter, with the latter made in boribap style.
Are you looking for the best noodles in the restaurant? If so, the clam and chicken noodles are something you should never miss. Yelp
Address: 3470 W 6th St Ste 9&10 Los Angeles, CA 90020
Contact Number: (213) 388-2326
8. Sun Nong Dan
This is the destination if you’re looking for Koreatown’s all-night galbi jjim. Sun Nong Dan have tender chunks of short rib, as well as tons of spice and chewy rice cakes. The soups are above average, but what attracts crowds in this establishment is their meat festival.
If you’re getting the galbi jjim, make sure to top it with cheese. It’s a next-level move guaranteed to give you the most out of your dining experience.
Address: 3470 W 6th St Ste 7 Los Angeles, CA 90020
Contact Number: (213) 365-0303
9. Surawon Tofu House
Soontubu Tofu House is a silken tofu stew, popular at BCD and Beverly Soontofu. But Koreatown also loves this tofu stew, with Surawon Tofu House at its forefront. This establishment makes their tofu on-site, which guarantees its freshness.
This in-house tofu also has this rich, complex flavor—nutty, but quite the treat. With its combo deals, you’re guaranteed to have a fantastic time. Among these, you should pick the item with fried mackerel since it’s big enough to satisfy two people.
Address: 2833 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006
Contact Number: (213) 383-7317
10. Seong Buk Dong
This is a small restaurant, but its traditional Korean dishes are superb. Seong Buk Dong is a well-crafted spot that focuses more on flavor, making them memorable. If you want the best out of their menu, try the braised short ribs coupled with the pot bibimbap for starters.
Once you’re ready, it’s time to try out their show stopper: the spicy-braised mackerel. This dish has layers of rich flavor, complementing each other perfectly when eaten with multi-grain rice.
Address: 3303 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90020
Contact Number: (213) 738-8977
11. DGM – Dwit Gol Mok
DGM is a fitting name for this establishment since its origin comes from the Korean expression that means “back alley”. Its address is at Wilshire Boulevard, but the entrance to this establishment is far behind. You can’t get lost since you only need to follow the succulent smells of barbecue and fermented red chili paste (gochujang).
It’s a good thing since you won’t see any signs in English. If you want to be sure, you’ll know you arrived once you hear the blaring sounds of K-Pop music. Regardless, your search is worth the indulgence of Korean bar food and soju—a killer combination for an enjoyable night out. Yelp
Address: 3275 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010
Contact Number: (213) 382-8432
12. Dumpling House
There are a lot of dumpling places making their home in Koreatown. Only a few of them offer a wider array of choices compared to this establishment. Located on the Little Bangladesh side of the Third Street area, this restaurant will satiate your appetite for dumplings.
Try out the pan-fried and deep-fried dumplings first. That way, you’ll have a good idea of what to expect. After that, start delving into the pork steamed and vegetable dumplings. Yelp
Address:3525 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90020
Contact Number: (213) 389-3899
13. Park’s Barbeque
If you’re looking for a premium Korean barbecue experience in Koreatown, look no further than Park’s BBQ. They offer prime-grade meats along with other traditional Korean delicacies. It’s a pleasant experience since the atmosphere exudes cleanliness and a lack of smoke.
The meat’s quality is such that it can rival some of the best restaurants in Seoul. The same goes for their banchan. The experience is unparalleled, so make sure to try it out when you’re looking for an enjoyable meal. Yelp
Address: 955 S Vermont Ave Los Angeles, CA 90006
Contact Number: (213) 380-1717
14. Kobawoo House
During lunch, crowds will often go for the bossam when they’re eating at this restaurant. It’s a Korean specialty dish that features pork belly slices and accouterments. But that isn’t the only thing worth trying in this establishment.
Kobawoo House offers other menu items like kimchi stew in a stone pot. If you want to try out the classic, get their hulking seafood pajeon. These dishes will always give you more than your money’s worth.
Address:698 S Vermont Ave Ste 109, Los Angeles, CA 90005
Contact Number: n/a
It’s undeniable that Koreatown has a lot of great spots for authentic Korean BBQ. But for younger Korean-Americans, Yangmani is the best place for intestines. They have a high-quality cow stomach and intestines on their menu, also known as gopchang and makchang.
Address: 2561 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006
Contact Number: (213) 249-9292
Founder, Editor-In-Chief // A native Angeleno. John studied engineering at UCLA; founded Schmoozd, an offline social tech networking event in LA with 30,000 subs; ran a startup accelerator (StartEngine). Worked for several major brands like Toyota, DIRECTV, Hitachi, ICANN, and Raytheon. A mentor at Loyola Marymount University (LMU) Entrepreneur School, Dr. David Choi. And advises a dozen local LA startups building amazing tech in various industries; and invested in some. // Let's Connect: email@example.com