BBQ, bowls, bulgogi, bibimbap, banchan – Korean food can’t be beat. Here’s where to get your next fix in the city.
Upstairs via a secret doorway on Lonsdale Street, Bornga has tree top views – nice for a sunny lunchtime. A sizzling Korean BBQ joint with custom hotplate tables, Bornga offers a bottomless supply of tasty side dishes. The KFC – Korean Fried Chicken – is not to be missed.
Modern without a blow to authenticity, Mansae prides itself on its premium quality meat, which you can cook at your table with your own gas grill. Starters include yukhoe (Korean tartare) and kimchi pancake, then there’s a range of warming hotpots and wagyu beef cuts to fill your belly. If you’re feeling particularly ravenous and carnivorous, get into one of the epic BBQ banquet options.
Just around the corner on Swanston Street is Oppa. Comforting bowl food is the go here. Opt for the classic hot stone bibimbap, curry rice or go all in for a ‘dosirak meal bucket’ – grilled meat, rice, deep fried potato hash with salad and pickled radish.
An excellent lunch spot with outdoor seating for the fine weather to come, Warra Warra is reliably satisfying. Find them at the back of Tivoli Arcade, behind the corner of Swanston and Little Collins Streets. Korean classics are done very well here, with vegetarian options and fair prices. Head in for a low key dinner – they’re open until 10pm.
A carnivore’s paradise, Hwaro’s Korean charcoal BBQ is all about the superb cuts of marbled meat and the lip smacking spice combos and house made sauces. Wash it all down with a refreshing craft ale.
Guhng the palace
Set over four levels, Guhng is a sleek, upmarket Korean BBQ where premium protein is the main game. Hotpots and sharing plates (featuring a variety of pancakes and rice cakes) with quirky vegie sides are also worth a look.
Sure SamSam offers a range of bulgogi and fried rice dishes, but to be honest we’re just here for the chicken and beer. Sometimes it’s fried chicken, other times we’re all about spicy wings or grilled whole chicken. Served with special SamSam sauce, rocket, green apple and walnuts.
Casual and popular among students, Oriental Spoon offers Korean fried chicken and stone bibimbap. Or if you prefer a more DIY approach, you’ll find a world of dishes to be cooked on hot stone or “charcoal-grilled” at the table. Choices range from ox tongue and pork belly to baby octopus.
A local North Melbourne Korean BBQ, this casual diner is great for groups. The Woo Ga Combo meal deals are heavy on the wagyu and light on the pocket.