As you may know from reading my blog, I lived in South Korea for two years from 2010-2012. During that time, I fell in love with a dish called dak galbi (닭갈비), which is composed of chicken, red pepper paste, cabbage, green peppers, sweet potatoes, and rice cake. Dak galbi became my favorite dish while I was living in South Korea. Upon moving back to New York City in 2012, I was disappointed to find out that it was impossible to find the dish in Korean restaurants around the city.
When I found out that London had a large Korean community, I thought that I might be possible to find dak galbi there. I went online and searched for dak galbi in London and came across Anne Cole’s article on The Korea Blog about A Night Out in London’s Koreatown. I was not only excited that a Koreatown existed in London, but I was even more excited to find out that DAK GALBI EXISTED IN LONDON. I was ecstatic and I vowed to make a visit K-Town a part of my London itinerary.
Getting to K-Town
Technically, Koreatown is not anywhere near central London. In fact, it is in a place called New Malden, which is located about a half an hour outside of metropolitan London in the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames. In order to get to KUT, you can either drive, or take the train (Motspur Park Station + 15 minute walk; or New Malden Station).
What I Did in K-Town
I wanted to go to Koreatown, but I did not necessarily want to go alone, so I headed over to the London Couchsurfing group to find out if anyone wanted to accompany me to dinner. A Korean guy named Damien, who had just moved to London, offered to go with me, so we met at You Me Korean Restaurant on Burlington Road.
The dak galbi at You Me made my night. I was so happy to finally be eating a dish that I had craved for over a year (yes, it was that serious). The food was served quickly and prepared for us before it was brought out (unlike in Korea where that provide all the ingredients and you cook it yourself).
We both decided that we wanted to explore Koreatown some more, so we went in search of a Noreabang. Koreatown in London was not at all how I imagined it would be. It was comprised of a few shops and restaurants that were scattered around a concentrated area in a residential neighborhood. We stumbled upon a noreabang
- London’s Best Korean Restaurants (Time Out London)
- A Night Out in London’s Korea Town (The Korea Blog, January 2013)
Wait wait wait…THERE’S DALKGALBI IN LONDON?!?! 오마이갓! It’s one of my favourite Korean dishes, and I haven’t had it since I was last in Korea….well, which was only August, but still, I’m craving it! Also, noraebang! If I ever move back to the UK, my plan is to open a noraebang and introduce the good people of the UK to Cass, Hite, and of course soju 😉
Now trying to think if I’ve got enough time to get down to London before I depart for Taipei in mid-January. Hmmmm!
YES!! I had the same reaction! I was so excited to find my favorite food while I was there. You definitely have to share Korean goodness with the world 😀
Hi Chanel, Love the blog, I am due to move back to the UK after living in Asia and Australia for last 7 years. The thought of not being able to get good Korean food and especially Dak Galbi was terrifying me. I love this dish and cant believe that it wouldn’t go a storm in UK. Wonderful news it goes so well with OB, which is my fav Korean beer.
Thank you for stopping by and commenting Wayne! I am sure that you will be satisfied with Koreatown when you move back to the UK.
Hi Chanel, Really a nice post with useful information on K-Town in London. Great to know such things and Many thanks for sharing your wonderful experience with us. Keep Sharing.
Thank you for coming by and reading Angela! 🙂
Enjoy Ram! 😀 Dalkabi is the best!
Me and my friends are going there in two months time, and are going to stay just down the road in Kingston Upon Thames, so we will probably walk or catch the train from there to it, and I’ll be sure to try the Dak Galbi and let you know what I thought of it
Have a wonderful time! I hope that the dakgalbi restaurant is still there. Now that several years have passed, you might be able to find something in central London as well.
The dak galbi restaurant is still there, it shows up on goggle maps
There is a lot of Korean food in London, much more than I listed in this article now, so you will definitely have the opportunity to enjoy Korean food in London 😀 This article might be a good place to start – https://londonist.com/2016/06/london-s-best-korean-restaurants
Hi Chanel,hank u for this info,am from Manchester and i never knew that there is a Korea town in London,i’ve been to Korea 3 times and am just crazy with their food especially street foodsand of course KDrama and KPop for my children,hope we could visit there one day and i hope that they’ve got food that am craving for??
Have a great time Rose and yes, there is one – took a little research for me to find it all of those years ago. I do hope you get to visit Korea, it is amazing 🙂
Great blog about koreatown chanel! I am in love with the Korean culture and really do hope to vist korea one day. Since you have stayed in Korea , I’m worried about the food there (I’m muslim by the way!)since I know many Koreans love their pork so if you can recommend some dishes that are halal and do not contain pork or alcohol that would be amazing!
Thano you so much!
Hello! I also do not eat pork and I was able to eat a lot of dishes in Korea. In terms of Halal, I personally am not sure of what you can eat, but here are two articles I found: (1) https://www.havehalalwilltravel.com/blog/11-halal-korean-restaurants-in-korea-you-must-visit-at-least-once/ and (2) https://www.halalzilla.com/halal-food-seoul-restaurants/76039 . I hope that helps!