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Adventures

I Snuck Tortillas Into KBBQ, Here’s What Happened

Photo by Peter Pham/Foodbeast

Korean BBQ is a unique experience where you get to be the grillmaster while still sitting at a table and conversing with loved ones. It’s a fairly perfect dinner that you wouldn’t think needs an upgrade, but we found a way to make the eating experience a tad better.

Tortillas.

Fellow Foodbeast Peter Pham and I snuck in tortillas to our KBBQ meal the other night, and it was everything we’ve dreamt it’d be.

It all started as a semi-serious joke in the office between Pete and I, as we often suggested how life-changing it would be to take our own tortillas to make tacos and burritos.

One fine day, Pete gave me the most serious look he had ever given me and said, “Should I pick up tortillas from Burritos La Palma so we can take them to Gen BBQ?” And in that moment, I knew it was actually happening. I nodded my head, and we were both in agreement that something special was going to happen between us that night.

We put the tortillas in a tote bag and just walked into our local Gen, which is a west coast Korean BBQ chain with over 30 locations spread across California, Texas, Hawaii, Arizona and Las Vegas.

Sure, we were a little nervous, but at the same time, we knew it was a slow night, and the staff was usually pretty chill. What’s the worst they can do, tell us to put away the tortillas? Would they actually kick us out for enhancing our eating experience?

Photo by Peter Pham/Foodbeast

If you’re not familiar with all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ restaurants, the price for the food is set. Even if the tortillas made us feel more full, and we ate less than usual, we were still paying the same $23, each.

After grilling up a strip of spicy pork belly and a bit of beef brisket, we knew it was time.

We pulled out the pack of delicious hand-made flour tortillas from Burritos La Palma, threw a couple on the grill, and got to work.

Using the pork belly, rice, a little bit of kimchi, jalapenos, and garlic sauce, we tested out our burrito rolling skills.

The servers passed by a handful of times, surely seeing us dig into our KBBQ burritos, but they didn’t say a thing, which was nice of them.

Now as for the results, calling the burritos orgasmic would be an understatement.

As Pete and I went all in on these burritos, I feel we shared a Harold and Kumar-like moment similar to when they took their first bites of White Castle sliders.

The flavor combinations of KBBQ being neatly stored within the confines of a tortilla made us feel like we Marie Kondo’d our feast.

Admittedly, I have had tortillas with my KBBQ before, as a now defunct restaurant in Rowland Heights, CA used to offer street-style corn tortillas. And of course, Roy Choi revolutionized this concept with his Kogi BBQ taco truck.

Photo by Peter Pham/Foodbeast

This experience was different, though, especially when the power to make the burrito is in your hands and you can pack in as much pork belly as your fatty little heart desires.

With the amount of KBBQ restaurants in Southern California, surely there are some others who offer tortillas. But the masses need to understand — it needs to be the new standard.

I hope that more Korean BBQ spots take our experience, and the success of Kogi into consideration, because if they don’t, I might have to just gamble and sneak in tortillas from now on.

It’s that good.

After filling our bellies with more burritos than we could handle, we headed out the door in triumph. On the way out, we spotted the “no outside food or drink” sign and said, ‘Well, that’s a damn shame.’

But it will not deter us until they pry the tortillas from our cold, dead fingers.

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LA’s K-Town Famous ‘Quarters’ Comes To OC With A BULGOGI BURGER


Going to Korean BBQ is an event. It’s treating yourself to a hefty portion of delicious, prime meat. It’s getting together a group of friends and chatting about everything going on in your lives while your favorite cuts sizzle away on the grill. It’s having no intention to rush. It’s fasting all day so that you can eat to your heart’s content once the bulgogi starts flowing. It’s leaving with a belly fuller than a perm in the 80’s. Sometimes, though, it’s not about all that.

Sometimes, you just want the food.

This was exactly the case for Foodbeast’s very own Elie Ayrouth and Mark Kharrat, along with Christina Kim (@vivalastina), in the newest episode of Going In. And boy, did they get the food.

One of LA’s quintessential KBBQ restaurants, Quarters BBQ, is bringing their high-grade meat to a more casual setting. This has translated to the debut of a new iteration of their restaurant in the form of Quarters Kitchen, in Orange County, CA. Here, they’re serving up their famous marinated meats in ways more attuned to your local spot that explodes with people at lunchtime.

There’s the fresh handmade Kimchi, Spicy Pork Belly Bowl, Nutty Green Tofu Salad, and the Kimchi Fried Rice, and the Grilled Pork Belly Bowl, and the Japchae, and — okay, I’m running out of breath. There’s a plethora of mouthwatering food, needless to say. And our favorite Foodbeasts tried them all. And when I say ‘all’, I mean they ordered every single item on the menu — in true Going In style. Check out the dishes they picked out as their favorites after sampling the menu.

Bulgogi Burger (Elie)

Often times, the best part about KBBQ, surprisingly, isn’t the meat. It’s the bowl of cheese that sits next to your meats on the grill, melting down until it turns into a luscious fondue. Thankfully, Quarters hasn’t abandoned that cherished feature here. This Korean-American BBQ hybrid is stacked with soy-marinated ribeye steak, lettuce, mushroom, cheese, and Quarter’s house signature sauce, all of which sits in between two brioche buns.

Bulgogi Kimchi Tater Tots (Christina)

Almost anything goes well with crispy, golden tots — even nothing, really. But when they’re covered in bulgogi, kimchi, and (as Christina stresses in the video) cheese? Forget about it. We’re taking it all.

Mandu (Marc)

These dumplings are filled with a mixture of beef, pork, bean sprouts, zucchini, dried tofu, onions, and chives. If you’re curious to see how these are made, make sure to check out the episode, as our hosts were lucky enough to make their way into the kitchen and receive a lesson in mandu making.

The trio finished off their meal with Quarter’s soft serve ice cream, which comes towering in a cup with a couple churros sitting atop. I’m not sure how there was any stomach space left there, but I guess our hosts were truly… going in.

You can view everything mentioned in this article in the newest episode of Going In. If watching isn’t enough, you can try for yourself at Quarter’s Kitchen at the Yorba Linda Town Center in Yorba Linda, CA.


Created in partnership with Quarter’s Kitchen. Feature image by AYCE Creative.

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Nightlife Restaurants

Roy Choi’s Changing Your Vegas Buffet Routine With AYCE Korean BBQ

Staying true to both Korean BBQ culture and Vegas buffet culture, Best Friend by Roy Choi has announced that it will be doing all-you-can-eat Mondays, where you can grub on all the restaurant’s meats and banchan side dishes for $65.

That means you can go in on two plates at a time, for as many rounds as you want. On any other day, the meats (Kalbi, Spicy Pork, BBQ Chicken, BBQ Veg, BBQ Shrimp) are individually priced, so this gives you a chance to try them all, as well as the banchan in one sitting.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to break the bank to whet your palate, as their sake and champagne magnums will be priced half off on Mondays, as well.

If you’re a noob to the K-Town-inspired restaurant, it is good to note that the menu also consists of “L.A. Shit,” such as carnitas tacos, elotes, and even an ode to Choi’s Kogi BBQ Truck short rib taco. But it also features grandiose Vegas-inspired menu items such as dry-aged tomahawks and Lobster Kung Pao.

In early 2019, Chef Roy Choi brought the streets of Los Angeles to the Las Vegas strip, opening up his “Best Friend” Korean restaurant at the Park MGM Resort and Casino.

“I wanted anyone that was from LA, that grew up around hip-hop as a brown skin, black skin or minority in Los Angeles, to walk in this thing and be like, ‘Oh f*ck yeah! This is it!” Choi told Foodbeast.

The $65 price point is definitely a little steeper than your usual Los Angeles Korean BBQ dinner, but is still pretty on par with high-end buffets on the strip. Plus, it gives you a chance to deviate from the typical prime rib/crab leg/oyster buffet combination you’ve probably been dining on since your parents took you to Vegas as a kid.

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Restaurants Video What's New

Korean BBQ Restaurant Serves Up Massive Pork Belly Burgers That Can Be Cooked On Your Grill

When you hit up a Korean BBQ spot with the squad, the typical power move is to get a few select cuts of meat and let them sizzle to perfection on the table’s grill. If you’re at this particular restaurant, however, you can up the ante with a massive “K-Town Burger” that you can request to be cooked tableside.

This K-Town Burger experience can be found at Porkfolio, a Korean BBQ joint in Santa Anita, California that’s known for their plethora of various kinds of marinated pork belly. Porkfolio actually mixes some of that into the burger patties, which are half-and-half blends of pork belly and brisket. That all gets topped off with mozzarella cheese, Gochujang mayo, and a kimchi-based “Seoul Slaw,” all of which are encased in a sweet bolo (aka pineapple) bun.

It’s one thing to get a plenteous platter of meats placed down in front of you, but to get a double-patty burger grilled live adds a whole new dimension to this social food experience.

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This Korean Barbecue Chicken & Waffle Sandwich Is About To Spice Up Your Summer

For the last few months, Bruxie: The Original Fried Chicken & Waffle Sandwich has been offering a bevy of various limited-time-only themed fried chicken and waffle sandwiches, and it doesn’t look like they’ll be stop anytime soon (we hope).

Bruxie has officially debuted their newest creation, and there’s no doubt it’s already an instant classic. The ‘Kravin’ Korean’ is a deliciously crafted rendition of Korean BBQ and crispy, flaky, golden brown fried chicken, served up on a light and fluffy waffle bun Bruxie lovers are already infatuated with.

In addition to Bruxie’s spiced fried chicken thigh, the Kravin’ also features a house-made Korean BBQ Sauce, and finely chopped Kimchi coleslaw. With a crunchy texture and a good kick of spice, blended with the warm, mouthwatering savory sweetness of the soft waffle bun — things are about to heat up this summer.

Yes, the lazy months of summer may be almost upon us, but you’d better not sleep on the Kravin’ Korean. This LTO sandwich will be available to Bruxie customers from May 17 – June 6.  

Created in partnership with Bruxie

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Hit-Or-Miss Now Trending

‘#DiningAndDabbing’ Is A Secretive Trend On IG That’s A Unique Take On Cannabis And Cuisine

With the passage of Prop. 64 in California, and other recreational cannabis initiatives in Arizona and Nevada, the door is now open for Americans in three neighboring states to start taking full-advantage of their new found rights as cannabis consumers.

However, while recreational cannabis use has yet to fully kick off on California soil  —  in terms of storefronts and cafes —  cannabis users are taking it upon themselves to dictate the boundaries of where and when the appropriate places to smoke, vaporize — and dab really are.

It’s 2017 and it’s no secret that cannabis can enhance the user’s eating experience. In fact, Viceland produces shows like Bong Appetite, which documents the process behind grandiose, 5-course cannabis-infused dinner parties, illustrating how food and cannabis can intertwine seamlessly.

Now, within the last year, the hashtag “#DiningAndDabbing” has become a new secretive trend appearing on Instagram. The #DiningAndDabbing trend seems to have been brought to life by Instagram user @Dr.Seuscio, a high-end glass and cannabis connoisseur who clearly loves cannabis, along with Korean and Japanese barbecue spots. 

However, the fun doesn’t seem to be limited to Asian cuisine, but rather anywhere the Dine and Dab can be pulled off discreetly enough to not attract attention.

For those unaware, “dabbing” is the term used to describe the act of smoking cannabis oil. In short, cannabis oil is a very highly concentrated dose of cannabis, which is made by extracting the psychoactive properties from the plant.

With Instagram as his publisher, Dr. Seuscio and his friends have been documenting themselves taking dabs —  without permission — at high-end Korean and Japanese BBQ restaurants while their food smokes and sizzles on the grill using the hashtags “#DiningandDabbing and #KoreanDabBq

Dr. Seuscio said that the cloud of smoke is usually the hardest to conceal — not the smell.  He added that, “good dabbing smells pleasant and doesn’t linger especially in well ventilated spaces.” He also mentioned that there is no need to ask for permission — if you are willing to beg forgiveness.

“It’s the visual from the cloud,” he explained via private message on Instagram. “The smoke from the meat or steam from a hotpot provides cover for the cloud created. Most important, be respectful and make friends through good tipping.”

Could Dr. Seuscio be a pioneer for Americans who have spent decades dreaming of a day when they, too, could pull up a chair at their favorite restaurant and be able to light a joint — or dab — without fear of legal consequences?

The answers is definitely.

In fact, speaking to Dr. Seuscio through private message on Instagram, he explained that he’s in the process of organizing an official Dining and Dabbing event — with permission from restaurant owners.

“I’m actually trying to organize a ganja restaurant takeover sanctioned by the owners, of course,” Dr. Seuscio wrote. “Where we bring our own meds and equipment and can dab at a restaurant while we enjoy a meal off of a limited menu, where everything offered is only the best quality. And if it’s well received, we’ll possibly make it a repeating event.”

You may or may not appreciate his interests and hobby, but it sure gives a unique take on elevating good cuisine.

One thing is for sure — that Korean barbecue looks damn good.

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Of Course A Korean BBQ Joint Would Make Great Jerky

GEN-Jerky-01

A few weeks ago, we wrote that popular Korean BBQ chain Gen offered a delivery service where you could get your frozen meat delivered anywhere. We had no idea, despite many visits to the Korean BBQ house, that they actually made beef jerky.

A feature of Gen Delivers is that you can order bags of beef jerky online. Kind of an add-on to your frozen meat order, or simply if you’re in the mood for jerky and nothing else. The flavors are : Spicy, Hawaiian, and Cajun.

GEN-Jerky-02

They weren’t bad, and in fact, a pleasant surprise.

We passed the bags around the office to see what fellow Foodbeasts thought of the product. Here’s what the few that weren’t taking an afternoon nap had to say:

Molly

Initial thought: the bag should come with a plastic zipper so it’s resealable. The Hawaiian’s good.

Reach

What jerky company is making jerky with legit cuts and KBBQ-level marinades?

Rudy

I feel like jerky is either the really soft delicious kind or the super hard gas-station kind and this somehow sits in the middle.

Each bag is about $6, which you can order from Gen’s online delivery store.

 

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Hit-Or-Miss Video

James Franco and Seth Rogen Make a Korean BBQ Lasagna [WATCH]

korean-bbq-lasagna

In one of the most awesomely timed YouTube collaborations ever, Epic Meal Time teamed up with Seth Rogen and James Franco to create a Korean BBQ Lasagna that actually looks palatable.

The video features Rogen and Franco building a Korean BBQ-inspired lasagna riddled with french fries, Korean meats and noodle dividers. Even better, the acting duo’s controversial new comedy film about assassinating North Korea’s Kim Jong Un launches December 25th, just a few weeks away.

Enjoy the episode, along with some blatantly terrible SEOUL cooking references: