How often do you go out to try a new cuisine and end up just scanning the menu for something vaguely familiar? Even the most adventurous eaters could use some pro tips when navigating an unfamiliar menu. To help you order like a native, we put together a series of menu road maps to guide your culinary discoveries throughout metro Phoenix.
Restaurant Name Keywords: Korean, Korean barbecue
Menu Keywords: Kimchi, Gogi, Jjigae, Bap, Myeon
It’s not uncommon for a Korean conversation to start with, “Have you eaten?” It’s usually not literal, but rather a way of asking about someone’s day, like saying, “How are you?” This simple greeting underscores how important traditional food has remained, even as Korea’s politics, economy, and culture have changed dramatically over time. As ever, to be fed is to be well.
Because winters in Korea are long and harsh, many foods traditionally had to be preserved to maintain a consistent food supply. The resulting cooking techniques produce pungent, complex flavors, with meals that are spicy, sour, briny, sharp, and sweet. In general, Korean dishes have a lot of flair and are rarely subtle.
Korean cuisine has prehistoric roots, with the ubiquitous fermented cabbage dish kimchi dating back thousands of years, and though the peninsula’s food has continued to evolve since then, it remains based on short-grain rice, meat and fish, and seasonal or fermented vegetables. Common ingredients include pepper flakes and pastes, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, bean paste, kelp, and anchovies.
Despite their close physical proximity, Korea and Japan do not have much in common when it comes to the kitchen. So, restaurants…
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