Cho Dang Gol

Manhattan, New York City


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This was the best vegan Korean pancake I've ever had. The Ya Chae Cham Doo Boo was great. The side dishes were also good, flavorful and not too spicy. I really like the way these Korean grandmothers cook.

Image for Dave Rolsky

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inah is right, the Ya Chae Cham Doo Boo is amazing. The tofu is really rich and creamy, quite unlike any other tofu I've had. We also got the leek pancake, which contains scallions, leeks, red pepper, and zucchini.

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Best Gop Dol Bim Bim Bap. That is sizzling stone bowl with rice, mixed vegetables, and hot sauce. They are the only Korean restaurant that does it correctly. The bowl is VERY hot, so be careful. I am guessing that other restaurants just use the bowl for presentation, and do not heat it up to the correct temperature for fear of burning patrons.

You add spicy red paste to taste. Then you mix it up, and eat it. Just gently stir it around, and the rice will not burn. Some of it will stick to the bowl, but leave it alone. You will get a lovely, crunchy crackly brown layer of rice you can chip off and eat at the bottom of your bowl. Specify you want it without meat and/or egg.

Also excellent is the Ya Chae Cham Doo Boo, a tofu and vegetable casserole. It is perfectly vegan. It is filled with a beautiful, daily made tofu. It is not like any tofu you've had before. It is creamy, rich, and almost like ricotta/custard.

Be careful with the Ban Chan (the little side dishes that come traditionally with every Korean meal). Make it clear what you can and cannot eat at the beginning and you will have no problems. We've never had a mistake made at this place. We've gotten exactly what we've ordered every time.

Check the daily specials. They currently have a cold noodle in bean and spinach soup that's absolutely wonderful. It is vegan, and is a spinach soy milk soup spiked with pine nuts and served with sesame salt so you can season to taste.

They also make their own makkuli! This is a very peasant style alcoholic drink, that comes with it's dregs. They also have some other Korean liquors, like Chung Ha (very easy to drink Korean Sake), and about 6 types of Soju.

Lunch or dinner, this place is excellent and consistent. You can get away with paying $7 for lunch specials, and you get a good amount of food (not overwhelming). Do not miss this place. I eat here at least once a week.

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