Bangi-ok in Seoul
Located along an endless stretch of restaurants and bars, Bangi-ok stands out amongst its peers thanks to its eye-catching exterior and long, snaking queue at the entrance. On top of that, the restaurant boasts fast service and friendly staff who made our KBBQ experience hassle-free when we paid them a visit.
Retro interior that reminds you of the 1980s
Green and brown are the signature colours of Bangi-ok, and perhaps it’s the combination of these two colours that creates a quaint and retro vibe that you might see in Korean dramas such as Reply 1988.
When you arrive at the restaurant, you’ll be greeted by a unique doorway in the shape of a keyhole. The distinctively shaped doorway makes for a great photo zone – just sayin’.
Typically, a warm ambience and a conspicuous interior aren’t what we’d prioritise at KBBQ restaurants. But at Bangi-ok, you’ll realise that it’s touches like this that will elevate your dining experience.
High-quality meat that complements a variety of sauces
Though we’ve waxed lyrical about the restaurant’s ambience, that’s not all that they have to offer. In fact, customers visit Bangi-ok mainly for the premium quality of food. The meat at Bangi-ok is of high calibre, which means you won’t feel guilty even if you empty your wallet here because you get what you’re paying for.
It’s a pity that the meat portion is a tad small, but we aren’t complaining as the sauces and side dishes made up for it.
Don’t forget to grill some mushrooms, garlic, and kimchi on the side as they perfectly complement and balance the juicy and greasy pork belly.
KBBQ meat is never complete without complementary sauces.
There are 4 different dipping sauces available at Bangi-ok. The basics are ssamjang (spicy paste eaten with KBBQ meat) and soya sauce with sliced onions and green chilli. But to take your gastronomical journey to the next level, we recommend trying out the wasabi and wholegrain mustard – you’d be surprised at how well it complements greasy barbecued meat.
To make the perfect ssam (KBBQ wrap), gather the following: lettuce, perilla leaf, grilled garlic and kimchi, sauce of your choice, pa-chae (green onion or scallion salad), and a few pieces of meat. Place everything on the perilla leaf, wrap it up, and stuff it into your mouth.
Spoilt for side dishes & set meals
One of the simplest ways to determine whether or not a Korean restaurant is good is by trying their side dishes (banchan). A good restaurant should have an abundance of banchan, preferably freshly made and perfectly seasoned.
It’s safe to say that the side dishes at Bangi-ok are fresh, diverse, and they successfully delighted our palates.
Also, each side dish is served in a stainless steel bowl, which is just so quintessentially Korean. It’s minute details like these that enhance our dining experiences.
If you’re visiting Bangi-ok in a pair, we encourage you to order the pork belly set meal (KRW38,000, ~USD28.94), which comprises 360g of fried pork belly, thick kimchi stew with pork belly, and soya bean paste stew with short ribs.
For those visiting in a group of 3 or 4, give the restaurant’s representative set menu item a shot. It includes 700g of fried short ribs, 100g of fried pork belly, and tomahawk, which is 150g of ribeye beef steak.
Similar to the pork belly set meal, this set includes thick kimchi stew with pork belly and soya bean paste stew with short ribs as well. The entire set costs KRW76,000 (~USD57.88).
Note that the set meals do not include rice.
Getting to Bangi-ok
There are a few outlets you can check out, but we recommend you visit the main Bangi-ok store located near Jamsil station or Songpanaru station.
How to get here:
- From Songpanaru station Exit 2, turn right and walk straight until you see a GS25 convenience store.
- After you turn in, walk straight until you see a 7-Eleven convenience store.
- Make a turn and continue walking until you see Bangi-ok across the street.
Address: 28 Olympic-ro 32-gil, Songpa-gu, Seoul
Opening hours: 1PM-1AM, Daily
Also check out:
- 8 Korean hangover soups
- 8 types of kimchi you must know
- 9 popular Korean foods you must try
- 8 Korean diet recipes that are easy
- 12 non-spicy Korean foods to try
Cover image adapted from: TSL