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The State of Korean Restaurants in SF City

Radical347 | Jun 5, 202103:23 AM     5

I just moved back to SF after a decade in San Jose. Last time, I remembered being disappointed by the Korean dining scene in SF. For some bizarre reason everyone was recommending Brothers. On the other hand, I had no trouble getting good Korean food in SJ/Santa Clara over the past decade.

Has the scene come along in SF since 2009 or do I still have to go back to Santa Clara (or Oakland) for good K-food? From a couple searches it really doesn’t look like a world of difference from last time, but perhaps some Chowhounds know something that I haven’t found yet.

A couple notes:

My favorite dishes are soups/stews such as al tang/al jigae, gam ja tang, yum so tang, hae jang guk, soon dae guk, and dogani tang/gom tang. BBQ not so much. Bonus points if they offer actual brown rice or mixed grain (fewer bonus points if their mixed rice is white rice with few specks of black to make purple.)

It does look like a handful of fusiony places have opened. I’m more interested in the traditional-style (mains with individual bowls of banchan) though I’m not opposed to trying fusion if they are really good and creative.

The only places I remember being good last time were To Hyang and Korean Village Wooden Charcoal. To Hyang is sadly closed. Korean Village is still probably good but grossly overpriced even for SF. There were a handful of other decent places (including Muguboka, Han Il Kwan) and they were satisfactory when I was really craving Korean but not really destinations.

I’ve heard good things about Daeho but the one in SF always seems to have a really long line. I’ve been to the one in Milpitas which is good but I actually liked it better when it was Soup By Parks. Is the SF one different?

I picked up a few of the starter menus from San Ho Won. Those were excellent, can’t wait for it to officially open.

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