Words cannot describe my love for Korean food. Spicy and sweet, with bold umami flavors, Korean food satisfy all sorts of craving and I can never get enough of it. The West Coast may have its claim on the best Korean food in the country, but Chicago’s Korean fusion food scene should not be missed as well. Affordable, comfort food has never been better. Here are my top favorites in town.
1. Del Seoul
I had my first taste of Korean fusion food here. Korean tacos, wings, and kimchi fries are all spot on. Th experience was life-changing. It set me up on a quest for Korean fusion food in the city and I haven’t stopped since then. (The kimchi fries on feature photo is from here)
Okay, so here’s the thing. Some of you may know I’m not a huge fan of this place, but this place gets so much rave and all my friends who have been absolutely loved it and did not find the chicken as dry as I thought. Maybe I had a bad batch when I was there, but I will say that they have a delicious selection of Buddha Bowls and a variety of sauces for the wings. I would go back again just to prove myself wrong.
JUICIEST WINGS EVER. With the skin fried lightly, and breaks off with a nice, crisp crunch. Bulgogi on dukbokki (rice cake) is also well made, chewy, crunchy rice cake soaked in sweet chili sauce.
4. Takos Koreanos
The restaurant name is pretty much self-explanatory. Their namesake tacos are wonderful, but also don’t miss out on the bulgogi on fries (omg), and the scrumptious egg rice plates that are deceptively simple but actually burst with flavors.
Seriously, you Northwestern peeps should go there more often. Hop on the Intercampus shuttle and it is right there next to Loyola so IT’S FREE AND EASY. Their loaded kimchi fries are the sh*t and the beautiful umami burger is a must-try as well. Their egg rolls were always sold out by the time I got there, so make sure to arrive hot and early if you want a taste of their popular snack.
6. En Hakkore
Crazy, colorful bibimbaps with 16 (!!!) kinds of vegetables. The Korean BBQ beef (basically bulgogi) is juicy and sweet, and the bountiful of vegetables are very fresh. I felt like I was eating a Korean version of a Chipotle salad, with way more veggies than rice. (Not complaining) En Hakkore also does Korean tacos a little differently, using paratha bread (a type of Indian flatbread) instead of soft taco shells, which gives a more buttery texture than corn meal. They have a second branch, En Hakkore 2.0, that serves bibimbap burritos!