Young Garden – Niagara’s Korean Food

Living in Canada it should be obvious I’ve visited Niagara Falls on numerous occasions. On my last visit for my birthday we stumbled onto Young Garden as we drove in. Niagara correct me if I’m wrong, but it may be the only Korean & Japanese buffet in this area.

Its conveniently located across the Double Tree hotel which is probably great for hungry guests. Walking distance from the casino, its very accessible. From the outside it looks out of place, since it resembles more of an office building than anything else. Stepping inside we come into a beautifully decorated and very functional space. Immediately you’ll notice the decoration of pots and wood, giving a comfortable feeling. Its the same type of effect some restaurants in Korea try to give to customers. A mom and pop kind of shop.

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Dakgogi – Fried Chicken of the North

If you’re looking for some some chicken and beer look no further than Dakgogi. Its only 5-10 minutes drive from Sheppard station in North York. There are some other ones, but I’ve been here more than 5 times and it’s consistently good. Also helps that the owner is super friendly! More on that below.

Chicken at Dakgogi
Chicken at Dakgogi.

You’d probably never guess but Korean styled fried chicken is quite a contender in the chicken space. Even the basic fried chicken, without sauces, has a unique taste. Most places don’t even do this right but add a little seasoning and we have perfection. Its the small details that count. It gives it just enough flavor without the feeling of being overloaded with salt.

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Korean Cowboy – Ironically One of the Most Korean Bars in Toronto

Points

  • Décor is like WaBar in Korea
  • Interesting cocktails
  • Fusion tapas, the good and the so-so
  • The best soju in town – *seriously*
  • Brings the spirit of mashing up cultures, similar to the best bars in Korea
  • Menu at bottom of page!
Kimchi Fries at Korean Cowboy
Kimchi Fries at Korean Cowboy

Korean Cowboy opened its doors just last week (written Sept.24.2014), on a Friday, but thanks to some good research between a friend and I we were able to get in a day earlier for the soft open. It was invite only (more like reservation only) and if you were lucky enough to know about it, you were already in. For the soft open everything was 50% off, and this meant for the first time in Soju Wave history you could see most of the dishes on the menu! We ordered a ton of food and drinks, and only paid $35 between five people. How? Read on!!!

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Doo Roo Ae – Doesn’t Skimp on Ingredients

Doo Roo Ae is located just across the P.A.T. mart in Christie. They are known for their 갈비탕 or short rib soup, and it doesn’t disappoint. They put quite a lot of other ingredients to really bring flavour to the galbi tang (short rib soup). You’ve got onion, enoki mushrooms, peppers and likely garlic. It’s only one of the few places that have got this down right! I usually don’t eat galbi tang because I prefer something with a little more meat, kamjatang (pork bone soup), but this made me fall in love with galbi all over again.

Short Rib Soup at Doo Roo Ae
Short Rib Soup at Doo Roo Ae

The rice that comes with it is the expensive purple colored rice. They don’t skimp on the ingredients. The side dishes that came were also really good. They were fresh, just enough spice and without the salty flavour. Again, it’s because they don’t skimp.

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Paldo Gangsan – Korea Town’s Best Kept Secret

Paldo Gangsan is probably the best kept secret when it comes to soju, food, and deliciousness. That is, until now. This is the part where I expose its good and awesomeness to you. I’m also going to see how many times I can add “ness” to words as I write this.

Budejiggae at Paldo Gangsan
Budejiggae at Paldo Gangsan

My girlfriend and I happened on here as we originally went to christie for 팥빙수 (patbingsu – shaved ice dessert) at HodoKwaja. I arrived late because of traffic and hunger completely changed our plan. There were a few places close by. The infamous Owl of Minerva was tempting but we’ve been there one too many times after a club night. Luckily, right beside it is Paldo Gangsan, above the E-mart which isn’t really E-mart.

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