Han Joo, a Korean newcomer in the East Village, aspires to better barbecue through hardware and gravity. On Chowhound, pravit reports that a signature specialty, samgyupsal (pork belly), is grilled at your table over a slab of crystal (pictured), a trendy Korean-'cue accessory that's believed to concentrate heat and speed cooking. Your server will tip the grill so extra fat runs off from the sizzling meat and perhaps toss some kimchi downstream, where it basks in the pork juices. The "micro-thin" cut, which cooks up crisp like bacon, is pravit's pick; tender kalbi (short rib) is another good choice for the grill.
The other specialty here is cold naengmyun noodles made with arrowroot starch. Served in mild or spicy broth, they have a great chew and come with hard-boiled egg, cucumber, and Asian pear. "Very refreshing," pravit says.
Han Joo is a month-old outpost of an established barbecue and noodle house in Flushing, Queens, the city's richest Korean feeding ground. Over all, pravit finds it better than most restaurants in Manhattan's Koreatown and just as good as popular Flushing options like Hahm Ji Bach and Jang Tuh: "Really glad to see a place like this open in the EV!"
Han Joo [East Village]
12 St. Marks Place (between Third and Second avenues), Manhattan
Han Joo [Flushing]
41-06 149th Place (near 41st Avenue), Flushing, Queens
Photo by pravit