Named in this week's LA Weekly as one of the best places in Koreatown, Toad, at 4503 Beverly Blvd, is every bit as good (and then some) as Jonathan Gold makes out. It's a real authentic joint, bare bones, for serious and memorable eating.
Start with the panchan and soup that comes with your meal. All of it is home-made, and all outstanding. We then had the Black Pig pork belly barbecue dinner, which is $39.99, which includes a bottle of excellent Soju. It's more than enough food for three. The attentive wait staff does all the work, grilling on the tabletop the streaky and very flavorful pork meat, along with fresh vegetables (mushrooms, scallion, potato, onion), fresh unpeeled shrimp and homemade kimchee. You grab it all up from your plate, in whatever combination suits, with rice-noodle crepes.
The owner's bright son, Jung, (who works daytimes at a bank as a loan officer) can show you the ropes and answer your questions.