Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Ham Ji Park - It's Porkalicious! (Los Angeles)

Ham Ji Park on 6th

Ham Ji Park, one of the first Korean restaurants I visited when I moved to Los Angeles three years ago, and to this day, it's one of my favorites. While the food and decor is nothing fancy, this place serves Korean "comfort food" at its finest.

On this visit, I came with Jackie of Citynitz and her boyfriend David and we were all starving. Usually I'd get 1 order of pork ribs and 1 order of the famous pork neck/potato soup (gamja tang) and it'll feed 3 easily, but since we let our stomaches order for us, we got an extra squid dish.

Panchan

Panchan (반찬)

Here we have the usual 반찬 served at Korean restaurants. Kim chi, Gakdukkee, potatoes, among others. Nothing fancy, and nothing really stood out, but you're not here for the side dishes (반찬). Next!

Pork Ribs
Marinated Pork Ribs (da gi kalbi)

Marinated Pork Ribs - $16.99

I have to say, these ribs are tender, flavorful and just simply delicious. When you visit Ham Ji Park, this is THE dish to order. Served on a bed of onions, the ribs were marinated in daenjang (fermented soy bean paste) and other seasonings. There's not much I could say, but try it, it's VERY good!

Gamja Tang

Pork Neck & Potato Soup (Gam Ja Tang) - $15.99

Since I'm a fan of soup, I actually prefer this over the pork ribs. Paired with a bowl of rice (bap), the pork meat was fall off the bone tender, and the soup spicy, yet not too much so. One thing that was disappointing on this trip was that the potato served in the soup was still actually raw, unlike the previous 20+ trips here. Maybe I came on an off day, but the raw potato took away something from the dish, albeit slightly.

Spicy Squid & Noodles (before)

Spicy Squid with Noodles - $17.99

This was a dish that Jackie insisted on ordering and it was solid as always. It's hard to go wrong with squid, hot pepper paste (gochujang), and noodles. The spicy squid provided a nice contrast for the noodles.

Spicy Squid & Noodles (after)
After...

More pictures of the squid noodle dish

All in all, Ham Ji Park provided me with another solid, if not great dinner. Other than the raw potatoes found in the soup, everything I had tasted familiar, and delicious. This is a family operated restaurant, and the service can range from brisk to excellent (It definitely helps to have a Korean speaker present, but you should have no trouble ordering in English). If you have more room, Bouchon is a few steps away, as is the famous Ice Kiss for their Korean shaved ice (pa bing su), but their quality has gone down in the past few years. Nevertheless, check out Ham Ji Park, especially if you're craving something warm and hearty!

*Note* Street parking sucks around here, but there's valet parking to the side (across from Chevron on Catalina) for $1.50 with validation.


Final Grade
  • Taste: 4.5 out of 5
  • Decor: 3.5 out of 5
  • Service 3.5 out of 5
Ham Ji Park
3407 W. 6th St. Suite 101-C
Los Angeles, CA 90020
(213) 365-8773

Ham Ji Park in Los Angeles

21 comments:

Princess Kitty said...

Ahhh.. you did post it up. =) the squid noodle looks yummy...

Kung Food Panda said...

PK: Ya, I wasn't doing anything productive last night, so I might as well =)

weezermonkey said...

Looks great! And thanks for the tip re $1.50 valet with validation -- so key!

Anonymous said...

that gam ja tang looks like labasan

you know who this is naga holla LOL

Wandering Chopsticks said...

The pork ribs look so good! You must take me here! :)

glutster said...

nice pics man.

well, like I told Wesley, Bill told me that this is only the first of many food-centered Baja trips to come so...don't worry, wil surely include you in on next one :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Danny!

Gastronomer said...

Mmm, boy! This looks like a K-town gem. Will add it to the ever-growing TO EAT list.

Kung Food Panda said...

Sharon: Love the place, and it should be pretty close to you and Mr. Monkey. Let me know what you think when you guys go! :)

Anon1: David, I know it's you, pok gai! LOL

WC: Consider it done! I go there way too often for me not to go back again.

Javier: Seriously, I'm down for the next Mexico trip! :)

Anon 2: Not sure who you are, D??

Cathy: I think you'll like it better than stinky tofu =P

Nanciful said...

WOW! This is great D! As a non beef eater, I'm always looking for Korean restaurants that have pork/chicken/seafood. This place looks delish! Great photos by the way.

Jin said...

i heart squid noodle. nice talking to you today!

Kung Food Panda said...

Nanci: I highly recommend this place or a place called Ondal 2 (upcoming review) for non-beef Korean cravings :)

Jin: Good time as always, but too bad you missed out on the pizza pie :( I'm a fan of Korean food! :)

Aaron said...

Given your background, you should put up more Korean reviews. You could easily be voted up on FD as the Korean expert.

Kung Food Panda said...

Seriously huh? I wish I have more pictures of Korean places. I should do a K Town run in the next few months. Oh, I SHOULD be in NYC in a few months...let's figure out a meal plan when I'm there in the winter :D

cheesywee said...

the spicy squid noodles.. forgot the name in korean BUT definitely one of my favorite dish to eat while drinking soju/hite etc.!! although pork belly is probably up there on the top 3!!

Kung Food Panda said...

I haven't had a bad dish here yet, although the banchan could be improved upon...

Pandalicious said...

oh yes, the pork neck soup was awesome. ribs were ok.

Kung Food Panda said...

Ya, even though both are good, I prefer the soup over the ribs!

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