Five of the best Korean restaurants around the world

Five of the best Korean restaurants around the world

Header images: Rosemary and thyme-infused oil, kimchi and ginseng at Sky Kong Kong and grilled shrimp at Gogi (image: Alina Tsvor for Chicago Food Authority)

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants is hosting its first Korean Dinners series this June in association with La Main magazine, bringing five of Seoul‘s top chefs to cook with two of the finest cooks in New York. In the spirit of sharing great Korean cuisine with the world, we asked our Academy Chairs – the experts in global gastronomy – for their Korean restaurant recommendations, from fine dining to casual-but-authentic local spots. Here’s what they came up with:

Unit 2 Haymarket Walk, Bristol, BS1

Sky-Kong-Kong-interior-600x400Inside Sky Kong Kong Recommended by: Xanthe Clay, 50 Best Academy Chair for UK and Ireland

Expert tip: “Located in a former pie shop by an inner city underpass, Sky Kong Kong has just one refectory table and one chef. Hwi Shim, known as Wizzy, serves up a meal of heart-warming Korean home cooking – there’s no menu; the food just comes – for £12.50 a head. Dinner might feature grilled sea bream, braised pork with homemade miso and chicken in ginseng broth while many of the vegetables, including sesame leaves for pickling, come from her allotment. Bring your own drinks or try green tea or ginseng juice.”

7 Rue d’Edimbourg, 75008

Recommended by: Nicolas Chatenier, 50 Best Academy Chair for France

Expert tip:Mandoobar a counter-style restaurant specialised in mandoos, which are Korean raviolis. This place is refined and highly rated by local French guides.”

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6240 N. California Ave., Chicago, IL 60659gogichicago.comGogi-Chicago-dishes-600x400-2A barbecue feast at Gogi (image: Alina Tsvor for Chicago Food Authority)Recommended by: Steve Dolinsky, 50 Best Academy Chair for mid USA and mid Canada

Expert tip: “The barbecue at Gogi is fantastic – well-marbled and marinated kalbi, and always grilled over live fire and charcoals. Especially good are the haemul pajeon (seafood pancake) served crispier than most, and a phenomenal kimchi fried rice with pork belly that is among my favourite late-night snacks.”

Tsukishima B1, 2-8-12, Tsukishima, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-0052No websiteRecommended by: Takanori Nakamura, 50 Best Academy Chair for Japan

Expert tip: “As well as the high quality of the yakinuku ingredients, such as various meat and vegetables, the kimchi made by chef Ms. Kim is fantastic and a must-try dish. Even Koreans are impressed and surprised by this restaurant – I’ve had people tell me they haven’t had such delicious kimchi even in Korea. This really is a place to experience authentic Korean cuisine.”

34b Redfern Street, Redfern


Kimchi at Moon Park (image: Jun Chen)

Recommended by: Pat Nourse, 50 Best Academy Chair for Oceania, Australia & New Zealand

Expert tip:Moon Park is that perfect modern Korean restaurant: deeply invested in the culture of Korea, yet very much a product of its Sydney environment, offering grower Champagnes and natural wines from around the world alongside soju and OB lager. The ssäm of smoked eel and puffed rice on a nasturtium leaf is an absolute must.”

Do you have a favourite Korean restaurant in your city? We’d love to know your recommendations so post them on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook with the hashtag #KoreaNYC.

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