The 5 Best Korean Restaurants in Washington, DC

Washington, DC, is a city with international flair and a diverse food scene. While all sorts of cuisines can be found here, Korean cuisine is particularly well-represented. The Korean culture is one that is steeped in tradition and cuisine. And Washington, DC, is home to some of the best Korean restaurants in the country. From hole-in-the-wall joints to upscale establishments, Washington has no shortage of great Korean restaurants.

Why Is Korean Food So Popular?

Korean food, with its rich flavors and diverse ingredients, has captivated food enthusiasts worldwide. This popularity can be attributed to several factors. First, the diversity of neighborhoods in global cities like Washington, DC, has fostered a multicultural environment where Korean cuisine thrives. From the bustling streets of Baltimore Ave to the quaint corners of suburban areas, Korean restaurants offer an array of dishes that cater to a wide range of palates.

Additionally, Korean food culture is built around the concept of sharing, making it an ideal choice for group dining. Restaurants often provide sharing options, allowing diners to sample various dishes in a single meal. This communal aspect of Korean dining enhances the overall experience, making it not just about the food but also about building relationships and enjoying good company.

Moreover, the global culinary scene’s growing interest in Asian cuisines has spotlighted Korean food, known for its unique flavors and cooking techniques. Dishes like beef bulgogi, chilled beef broth, and noodles with beef offer a delightful exploration of taste and texture, contributing to its rising popularity.

Is Korean Food Healthy?

Korean cuisine is often celebrated for its health benefits. The traditional Korean diet is well-balanced, featuring a variety of cuts of meat, vegetables, and grains. Dishes like beef intestines and beef tongue, though might sound unconventional to some, are rich in protein and nutrients. Moreover, the inclusion of fermented foods like kimchi adds probiotics to the diet, aiding in digestion and overall gut health.

Korean meals also typically include a range of side dishes, offering an array of vitamins and minerals. For instance, a premium beef dinner in a Korean restaurant isn’t just about the juicy meat; it’s accompanied by sides like seasoned vegetables, rice, and soup, making it a well-rounded meal. However, like any cuisine, moderation is key, especially when it comes to dishes high in sodium or sugar.

What is a Normal Korean Breakfast?

A typical Korean breakfast is not vastly different from other meals of the day. It often consists of a balance of rice, soup, and side dishes. Common breakfast items include beef bulgogi, a marinated beef dish, or a simple bowl of noodles with beef. For those seeking a lighter start to the day, chilled beef broth can be a refreshing option.

Korean breakfasts also cater to the comfort food people, offering warm, soothing dishes that energize you for the day. The inclusion of small side dishes allows for a variety of flavors and nutrients early in the morning, aligning with the Korean food culture of balance and variety in every meal.

Here are our picks for the 5 best Korean restaurants in D.C.:


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Suppose you’re looking for an exceptional Korean dining experience. In that case, Anju is a must-go in Washington D.C. Anju is a popular Korean restaurant located in the heart of Washington D.C.’s neighborhood. The restaurant is known for its modern take on traditional Korean cuisine and its extensive wine and cocktail list. The restaurant features tasting menus that will give you a comprehensive overview of traditional Korean cuisine. From the moment you walk in, the staff will be there to take care of you and guide you through the menu.

The Fried Rice Collective, made up of chefs Danny Lee and Scott Drewno and runs restaurants like CHIKO, I Egg You, and TFRC Catering, came up with the idea for Anju. Anju is run by Executive Chef Angel Barreto and General Manager Eric Chodkowski. It has a modern home-style setting and serves a variety of Korean food.

Da Rae Won

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Da Rae Won’s menu features all the staples of Korean cuisine, including bibimbap, bulgogi, kimchi stew, and much more. Whether you’re craving a hearty meal or something lighter, you’ll find something to your taste at Da Rae Won. And be sure to try one of their delicious Korean BBQ dishes – they’re some of the best in town!

With friendly service and reasonable prices, Da Rae Won is a great option to die for! So, if you’re looking for delicious Korean comfort food in Washington, DC, Da Rae Won is the perfect spot. The restaurant is located in the heart of downtown, making it easy to get to, and offers a great variety of traditional Korean dishes.

Tofu Lighthouse and Barbecue

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Tofu Lighthouse’s unique and signature tofu soups are a must-try if you’re looking for a once-in-a-lifetime dining experience. You may make your soft tofu soup taste however you like, whether it’s vegetarian, kimchi, or oyster. You get rice, some banchan, and a raw egg in your bowl.

Their tofu is made from scratch in-house using only the finest ingredients. Their barbecue is slow smoked over hickory wood for a delicious flavor. They also have a wide selection of beers, wines, and cocktails for you to enjoy with your meal.

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Mandu K-Street

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Mandu is a traditional Korean dumpling, typically made with beef or pork and a variety of vegetables. The filling is wrapped in a thin dough skin and cooked until perfectly tender. And at this restaurant, they offer the best mandu in town!

The restaurant specializes in handmade dumplings cooked to perfection and served with various dipping sauces. The menu also features a selection of noodles, rice dishes, and salads. Regulars rave about Mandu’s delicious dumplings, friendly service, and reasonable prices. Moreover, the restaurant is also one of the few places in the city where you can get authentic Korean food. If you’re looking for a delicious and affordable meal in D.C., check out Mandu!

Gom Ba Woo

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Gom Ba Woo, a small and cozy Korean restaurant, serves up some of the most excellent dumplings and seafood pancakes in town. Get one of those to start, and then order one of their hearty stews.

The restaurant is called “gom ba woo,” which is Korean for “chicken and noodles.” It’s a casual, family-owned restaurant that serves home-style Korean food. The menu includes dishes like bibimbap, bulgogi, and japchae.

The restaurant has received some excellent reviews online. One reviewer said, “The food was delicious and authentically Korean. The service was friendly, and the prices were reasonable.” Another reviewer said, “The food was top notch…I highly recommend this place to anyone looking for a good Korean meal.”

Where Would You Dine?

It’s not news that people go crazy over Korean food ever since Korean entertainment has stolen the hearts of many. There are many reasons why people love Korean food. For one, Korean dishes are often packed with flavor, thanks to the use of traditional ingredients like gochujang (red chili pepper paste) and kimchi (fermented cabbage). Also, Korean cuisine is typically quite healthy, emphasizing fresh vegetables and grilled meats. And finally, many people enjoy the communal aspect of Korean dining – sharing a meal with family and friends is a great way to bond and catch up.