The Best Korean Restaurants in Toronto
The best Korean restaurants in Toronto are a varied bunch, specializing in everything from stone pot soups and rice bowls to tabletop BBQ and crispy fried bar snacks. That diversity applies equally to geography within the GTA, with establishments spread out from K-Town to Thornhill, Scarborough and beyond.
Here are the best Korean restaurants in Toronto.
Tucked into the back of a Steeles Ave. strip mall, this massive Korean restaurant is truly a hidden gem. The menu covers an array of soups, rice, noodle dishes and mains, but if you're dining in a small party, opt for a set menu (starting at $35 for two) to sample a variety of dishes like kalbi, rice and doenjang chigae (fermented soybean stew).
This compact spot on Lawrence East in Scarborough has earned a solid reputation for bowls of pork bone soup and lettuce wrap sets - not to mention they're generous with the banchan. Seating is limited, and guests here are encouraged to linger, which can ultimately lead to long lines to get in.
This eatery on Yonge St. in Markham is so popular that line-ups are to be expected in peak hours. The menu features a concise line-up of 35 dishes, but the selection is solid and varied. The thing to get here is the Chik Mul Naeng Myeon ($9), a cold soup with crunchy arrowroot noodles and crisp vegetables - getting kalbi or dumplings on the side is advised too.
Attentive and efficient service at this K-Town restaurant makes a positive first impression, but it's the piping hot soon tofu soups ($7) served with stone pots of purple rice that have locals and destination diners coming back again and again. The requisite complimentary banchan are varied and interesting.
North York and Korea Town locations are solid options for deep bowls of silky tofu soup ($7.08) loaded with kimchi and meat, seafoods, or dumplings. The bibimbap is popular too, served in a sizzling stone pot that crisps up the bottom layer of rice, and beautifully presented with a vibrant array of toppings.
The Ossington snack bar isn't your average Korean joint; the menu is a mash-up of American streets foods and traditional Korean comfort foods. Staples on the fun, cocktail-friendly menu include crispy, chili-glazed chicken wings, kimchi rice, bulgogi cheesesteaks and curry-covered squash poutine.
Service here can be hit or miss, but the specialties from the kitchen like the kimchi pancakes and grilled short ribs are extremely worthwhile. Also among my faves are the pork belly ($19) and kalbi ($25) for DIY grilling at the table, served with a customary spread of banchan, condiments and lettuce cups.
This lower level Korean outfit in Chinatown is a favourite for ultra-satisfying dishes served at remarkably low prices. The huge, hearty bowl of pork bone soup ($8) is among the main attractions while other noteworthy dishes include sizzling platters of kalbi, stone pot bibimbap and chapchae noodles.
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