what: ojingeo bokkeum jjol-myeon
where: Seoul Restaurant and Grocery, 1717 Decker Blvd., 790-0090
Decker Boulevard has long been the United Nations of Columbia’s palate. It takes time to explore the many hidden gems along this 2-mile strip of international groceries and restaurants. At least that’s what I tell myself about not having been to Seoul Restaurant sooner. It’s been around for years, serving authentic Korean fare in what appears to be a former convenience store. The shelves are packed with all manner of imports like shrimp crackers, aged ginseng root, dolsot stone bowls and a sizeable frozen foods section, labeled in Korean. This week’s Bite is a spicy stir fry of squid, julienned carrots and white and green onions served over jjol-myeon, a thick and chewy wheat-flour noodle. Comes with homemade banchan and a bowl of steamed rice. After I’d settled into my lunch, chef Kim leaned out from the kitchen doorway and asked me, “Too spicy?” Forgetting my manners, I garbled out an enthusiastic, “No, it’s really good!” between a mouthful of noodles and tentacles.
“Good,” she said with a smirk. “Makes you strong.” Then she playfully flexed her arms.
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