We are extremely fortunate to have the absolute best Korean food available in the greater Seattle area, right within our Edmonds city limits! Our family gets withdrawal symptoms if we do not have Kim chi every week.
For inquiring minds…Here is the scoop on coffee vending machines that are a fixture at the front of most every Korean restaurant. A courtesy item, most give you a small cup of steaming instant coffee. There’s a “cream coffee” (milk, sugar, and coffee powder), “milk coffee” (milk and coffee powder, but no sugar), to black but sweetened coffee. Even a non-coffee choice like powdered Job ’s tears tea or cocoa. My husband is addicted! These machines have become almost nostalgic for many Koreans. Not only found at restaurants, but in their homeland the patrons of department stores and shopping malls sip cups of foamy liquid vended by these machines.
Condiments! Korean cuisine is all about the little dishes of fermented food like Kim chi flavored greens, fresh bean sprouts, radishes and sautéed eggplant each so good on their own, all compliment the main dishes. Thank goodness there are take home containers. I have on more than one occasion filled up on this wonderful fare, and have little room left when the main attractions arrive.
On to research which is of course, my favorite part. Being the My Edmonds News restaurant news writer rocks! Being extremely familiar with many of the Korean restaurants in and about Edmonds, Lynnwood and Shoreline, I decided to visit the location where 19 years ago seeing a dish of chicken feet didn’t send me running for the exit. Intrigued, my first meal started a keen love of the hot spicy cuisine that is Korean.
Newest owners are still doing it right! Hosoonyi scores a 10 on my measuring standard for Korean food — a seafood pancake. The fluffy potato filling was packed with tender squid, green onions. Crispy and delicious! No oil oozing onto the plate. The portion I took home as peace offering was gobbled up by my husband. He had his nose slightly out of joint since I went dining without him. The soft tofu soup is another favorite of mine; theirs has plenty of tender seafood and melt-in-your-mouth soft tofu in perfectly seasoned broth. Korean is all about BBQ, so the sizzling platter of Short Ribs piled on top of grilled onions was tender and good to the bare bones, which is all we left on the plates. Open 11 a.m. t0 11 p.m. located at 23830 Washington 99 #114, Edmonds. Phone 425-775-8196; hosoonyitofu.us
Babsarang is actually inside the Boo Han Market. For more adventurous food lovers, there is soon dae: blood sausage that comes with rice or noodles. While browsing the amazing array of veggies at this market, I can enjoy the crunchy, savory fish-shaped waffle, stuffed with red bean paste. It’s an easy item to hold in one hand while pushing the cart. Lunch and dinner Tue.–Sat., 22618 Highway 99, Suite 115; 425-776-7290
When a late night craving for Korean food strikes, these two are open ’til the wee hours!
BCD Tofu House, which is almost always open until about 3 a.m. or later, reported to have some of the best sundubu around (try the ham and sausage). Mon.–Thu. 9 a.m.–3 a.m., Sun. 9 a.m.–4 a.m. 22511 Highway 99, 425-670-6757; also in Lynnwood, 3301 184th St. SW, 425-776-8001; bcdtofu.com
Stars in the Sky is known for Korean fried chicken, this little spot combines karaoke, soju and giant platters of local chicken crispy chunks served with dips on the side, or tossed with one of three sauces (Asian garlic sweet, sweet and spicy or extra spicy). Hours: Mon.–Sat. 5 p.m.–2 a.m., Sun. 3 p.m.–midnight. 23830 Highway 99, Suite 121; 425.582.8802; starsintheskywa.com
Two treasures slightly over our border in what I like to call “Northish Edmonds”… are Sam Oh Jung open for Lunch and dinner Mon.–Sat. 17425 Highway 99; 425-745-3535 and the little restaurant located inside the Olympus Day Spa which is a women-only day spa (sorry,guys). I have celebrated a few birthdays there with women friends. We dine between soaks, scrubs and massage, dressed in robes and a shower cap. The food is so healthy it truly makes one feel totally well nourished while being pampered by the staff.
Just south, in Shoreline are several outstanding establishments, our favorite is Hae-Nam Kalbi & Calamari. Everything is great and pricing very reasonable. Baby Octopus, pictured on building’s mural, is a signature dish. Located at 15001 Aurora Ave N, Shoreline, Ph: 206-367-7843, hours are 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.
So many great choices, I’m never at a loss to keep my Korean Cravings at bay!
If you have a favorite spot that I need to check out and sample the cuisine, please don’t be shy!
— By Kathy Passage
A specialty gourmet food broker for over 30 years, Kathy Passage has in-depth knowledge on food and the special qualities of ingredients used in the exquisite products she helped bring to market. Kathy brings this unique perspective from the “other side of the plate” to writing about the food and restaurant scene in Edmonds.