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Tonight's dinner: Naeng myun

Cicely | Jun 3, 200611:49 PM

It was such a scorcher today, naeng myun (cold noodles) was a no-brainer. Went down to Kang Seo Myun Oak with bf and a friend. After a starter of their Pyongyang mandu/dumplings (huge, filled with lots of veggies but not all that flavorful), I had the "teung" naeng myun - when I asked, she told me it was basic naeng myun in broth, with samgyeupsal (pork belly) in addition to the slices of beef. Sold! The other two got naeng myun/kalbi combos.

My naeng myun had fat slices of what was basically like the cha shu in tonkotsu ramen. I had a moment of apprehension about eating cold fatty pork, but I got over it. My teeth sailed right through, it was so tender. The noodles came with a side of pickled radish, sliced paper-thin, and some kind of pickled greens, good for cutting the fattiness.

I really liked the pork (an unusual addition), but it made the broth fattier than usual. Now I realize why the beef slices that usually come with it are so lean! The broth wasn't so flavorful, either (and I dosed it up with vinegar and mustard). And since it's cold, the fat was practically precipitating out of it.

The kalbi, cooked in the kitchen, was pretty good... bf pointed out that getting a bite of sizzling-hot beef along with the cold noodles is a great sensation. Unfortunately, the kalbi came out a few minutes before the naeng myun, so it was more like very warm beef with cold noodles.

Overall, pretty good, but I like Yu Chon's naeng myun better.

Kang Seo Myun Oak
6th St at Westmoreland

Yu chon
Across the street from Chapman Market

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