Unlike sushi or Thai food, Korean BBQ has only recently hit the mainstream. The dining style has been quietly rising in popularity for the last decade.
Diners at Korean BBQ restaurants usually grill their own tender, marinated meats on a small tabletop grill, making each meal entertainingly interactive. Recently, though, the traditional cuisine has gotten a boost simply by changing the cooking surface.
If you haven’t already,You have to take the family and friends out for Korean BBQ. At most Korean BBQ restaurants, the “any way you like it” angle isn’t limited to grilling your own meats. Once diners take a cooked morsel off the grill, they can add rice, soybean paste, chili sauce, or whatever catches their eye. All that gets piled on top of a lettuce or cabbage leaf, making a little lettuce wrap known as a ssam. The All You Can Eat is always the way to go. The little cold plates, called banchan, that accompany Korean BBQ entrees are filled with mostly vegetable-based dishes and condiments such as fermented cabbage (kimchi), cold-boiled bean sprouts (kongnamul), and seasoned spinach. Though people often dig in as soon as the myriad little plates hit the table, banchan are actually side-condiment hybrids meant to be savored alongside your meal. As a bonus, they’re also usually bottomless, so they’ll be refilled when they run low.
If you and the family are ready for a fun and entertaining dining experience try Chung Ki Wa at 8601 S Tacoma Way in Lakewood, WA (253) 588-5976.
The food and service is good plus the price is always right. If available the lunch special is the way to go.