My home base for the days of the IMM and NYT events was the New York Manhattan Hotel in Koreatown. Didn’t think much of it when I first booked the spot but boy is the location pretty darn awesome! Right in the middle of a bustling street with Koran BBQ places all around, as well as a few other options so here’s my take 5 on restaurants you can try if you happen to find yourself in the area...
Korean BBQ place. Looks pretty hole in the wall from the outside but clearly a local favorite with many sitting down for a proper buffet style dinner. I packed this box of hot dishes to take back to my room but the buffet also had a cold section as well as a soup and salad/pickles spread. You pay by box weight for your food. They had tons of other stuff sold as packaged goods, that I would have positively purchased were I living there, but had to make do with my boxed hot dinner. So good though!
On the parallel street from where I was staying, this is a cute neighborhood chocolate and wine bar. Was here on the weekend and arrived in good time before the crowds descended for dinner. Even then, barely managed a spot at the bar – that’s how popular the space was. Ordered a bunch of appetizers, few different drinks, dessert – everything was delicious. This shrimp bruschetta is only a teaser. Great for date night or catching up with girlfriend me says.
I don’t understand why we don’t already have this chain here in LAX! Many locations in NYC, of course, so checked out one with a girlfriend. If you survive their bakery display up front and manage to make it in to the dining area, I recommend really anything on the menu but I was in there for brunch and devoured, with great pleasure, a Nutella toast topped with banana and strawberry. Loved that it was responsive to my fork and knife skills, and had no additional bells and whistles like extra cream or chocolate or nuts.
The Kati Roll Company
This was a few streets parallel and bit of a walk in low temps but a fairly pleasant one I’d suppose in warmer climes. The place basically sells kati rolls. End of story. Couple of different options but their rolls are their main game. Do get some of their signature masala chai. I recommend the shrimp and lamb with egg kati rolls. It’s a pretty small space so better if you head here during non-peak hours or get your order to go. I actually have no picture for this because that’s how quickly I gobbled it all down!
Parker and Quinn
Just across from the kati roll place is this dinner/cocktail spot. Did not know at that time that it was the signature restaurant at The Refinery Hotel but found out later. Amazing service. Great food – stuck with appetizers but loved everything ordered. Wines paired were perfect. And that dessert in the end – molten chocolate with green tea ice cream – was the bomb!
By no means am I claiming these are the best, simply sharing the places I dined at and enjoyed during my trip! Do share if you have any favorites in the area, I’d love to have a handy list for the next time I visit.