Dumplings Galore – Review of Mandoo Bar


Mandoo Bar
2 West 32nd Street
K Town

Making dumplings at Mandoo – Photo courtesy of Cerebral Decanting Blog

Making dumplings at Mandoo – Photo courtesy of Cerebral Decanting Blog

Mandoo, or Mandu is the word for Korean dumplings.  Mandoo bar in K Town serves up freshly made dumplings in a variety of fried and boiled flavors.  Different than your average Chinese dumpling or Japanese Gyoza, Mandoo has a distinctly Korean flavor much lighter than that of its Asian counterparts.

Mandoo is a staple in my Manhattan restaurant repertoire.  Whenever I’m in the mood for some delicious Korean food, but don’t want to shell out the bucks for Korean BBQ, I stop by Mandoo.

Although the shabby digs could use an update and the staff could stand to be a little friendlier, I sure have a hard time passing up a dumpling filled with kimchi, pork, and scallions (Kimchee Mandoo, 10 pcs. for $10).  While not every dumpling offered tops my favorites list, like the seafood mandoo, boiled and filled with shrimp and imitation crab meat coming in a little on the bland side, Mandoo Bar is a great place to take a few people and share dumplings with, especially if they have never tried Korean food before.

Mandoo Soup at Mandoo Bar

Mandoo Soup at Mandoo Bar

On my most recent trip, I tried the mandoo soup ($11), a large bowl of clear beef broth with pork dumplings and bits of shredded beef and scallion.  Although not the most appetizing looking thing that has ever been placed in front of me with its pale broth and equally as pale dumplings, the mandoo soup was quite good after spiced up a bit with
sriracha.  The flavors were light, but it was a completely comforting dish that my friend claimed cured the cold she had been fighting!

Mandoo Bar is a K Town staple that I will forever come back to for a dose of Korean comfort food at affordable prices.


Mandoo Bar on Urbanspoon

Under the Green Tent: Korean Street Food – Review of Pocha 32


Pocha 32
15 W 32nd St, 2nd Fl
(between 5th Ave & Broadway)
, NY  10001
(212) 279-1874

Green Tent.  Photo by Sarah Ip.

Green Tent. Photo by Sarah Ip.

Imagine yourself bundled up in layers in the dead of winter, sitting on a stool outdoors under a plastic green tent with gurgling pots of kimchi -infused casseroles, soups and spices mingling around you.  Soju bottle in hand, pouring your sunbaenim (elder, in Korean) a shot and knocking the vodka-like substance back with a hearty “Kanbei!”…followed by a loud, vehement clearing of the throat.  Slurping down ramyun like it was a race to the finish, burning your tongue in the process because you want to eat the noodles while they’re not soggy. [Read more...]

The New KFC: Korean Fried Chicken – Review of Bonchon Chicken


Bonchon Chicken
207 W 38th St
(between 7th Ave & 8th Ave)
/ New York, New York
(212) 221-3339

Original Soy & Garlic Fried Chicken.  Photo by Sarah Ip.

Original Soy & Garlic Fried Chicken. Photo by Sarah Ip.

I love KFC.  That’s Korean Fried Chicken (and not that other, Colonel Sanders-style chicken).  No, this isn’t Southern fried chicken with grits and collard greens on the side.  You’d more likely find it served with daikon (pickled radish).  It’s not dipped in batter twice and fried to a crisp.  Instead, Korean fried chicken is made with a delicate soy and garlic marinade, resulting in a light crunch. [Read more...]

“IHOT: The International House of Tofu”* – Review of BCD Tofu House


BCD Tofu House
17 W. 32nd St.
Koreatown, NY 10079
(212) 967-1900 /

BCD Tofu House Menu.  Photo by Sarah Ip.

BCD Tofu House Menu. Photo by Sarah Ip.

J, my friend from Boston, came to visit New York City.  He, DY and I set off to embark on a Manhattan tour, stomping from Soho to midtown, in search of interesting sights and sounds.  Mesmerized by the lights of Broadway, we continued on to Koreatown for a little something to fill our bellies. [Read more...]