midsummer nights

It’s July! And it’s hot. And I have no AC. And that is perfectly fine because I love hot weather. My brain is melting though and sometimes I wonder if I’m actually going through life or just floating in a dream.

This is what I’ve been up to, apparently:

20150721_203904Took a friend who’s visiting from New York to Kang Hodong Baekjeong. There’s always a long wait, but it gives you a chance to walk around the beautiful Chapman Square. And pick up snacks at the nearby Korean market.

20150721_194610We finally got seated after 40 minutes (on a Tuesday night!). But hey, good food is worth the wait. Really like their covered outdoor seating area, especially on a summer night.
20150721_203926Made soju bombs aftewards and drank some makgeolli. Cass Fresh kinda tastes like the Korean version of PBR.
cassFinally got a chance to use my panda character mask. This one’s from The Face Shop. Good coverage, average scent, lots of moisture. Fun to wear.
panda maskI’ll end here with a book I just finished reading. It’s called A Step from Heaven and is written by An Na.  It’s YA but can definitely be appreciated from the adult perspective. It’s about a young Korean girl who immigrates to America and has to deal with her family falling apart due to the stress of assimilation. Kind of depressing but beautifully written, and it ends on a hopeful note.
step-from-heaven
Najunge bwaeyo! 나중에 봬요!

Hwang Hae Do

It’s been awhile since my last post. Apologies. Let’s move on to food!
hwang_ext

Hwang Hae Do is an unassuming KBBQ restaurant with a plethora of side dishes. I’m a big fan of the rice paper they provide so you can wrap everything up into a yummy package.
I went for lunch on a weekday so it wasn’t very crowded, which meant the service was prompt.
According to yelp, when it gets busy the waiters are less attentive.

You get lots of veggies. A huge bowl of salad plus extra lettuce for wrapping. Here are some sprouts.

sprouts_meat

Fresh seasonings:

sauces
And steamed egg. I should really learn how to make gaeran jim myself since I love it so much.

steamed_egg
The menu is quite extensive, so I’d love to come back and try more dishes. I found out later that the yook soo bulgogi is highly recommended.  Beef broth? Sold!

Hwang Dae Do Korean Restaurant

429 N Western Ave
Ste 7
Los Angeles, CA 90004

Grade: B

Pros: Lots of traditional dishes. Valet parking for $2

Cons: It’s an older-style restaurant hidden in a strip mall, expect things to be a little run-down. The decor is drab.

 

Handaegam Korean BBQ Restaurant

Before my horror movie had its Bay Area premiere, I fueled up with some tasty kbbq in San Leandro. I know in my past reviews I’ve been pretty meh about the Korean food scene in NorCal, but Handaegam was pretty good. Dare I say, the kind of place with food I’d actually crave and want to go back to.

True, San Leandro isn’t a city on most people’s travel lists, but I definitely liked all the dishes here more than Oakland’s Ohgane. Also, since the entire waitstaff is Korean, the dining experience feels more Asian than Bowl’d.

The servers don’t speak a lot of English so expect to repeat yourself a lot and play charades to explain what you want. The ladies are pretty brusque, and that may turn some people off, but I thought they were funny. When the boy tried to order for our group of ten, the waitress pressured him to order way more dishes than we needed.

All the meat was delicious. The rice was average, but not bad. I enjoyed the seafood pancakes. And the banchan was fresh and bountiful.
20150403_202147You can’t see in this photo here, but the meal also came with plenty of lettuce for wrapping and a refreshing bowl of salad to share.
20150403_201847Love this guy. (The boyfriend, not the fish.)
20150403_202751

To find out more about my movie, you can check out the official Facebook page and my director’s blog!

Floored by the supportive audience that came out to watch my movie, The Purgation. So many horror fans! I also got interviewed by KPOP-TV! If you live in the Bay, be sure to get your K-pop fix on their channel which airs music videos 24/7.

Han Dae Gam
1292 Davis St
San Leandro, CA94577
b/t Wayne Ave & Douglas Dr

Grade: B

Pros: Fresh, homey Korean food. Large servings. Yummy meats. Lots of authentic dishes on the menu that you probably can’t get in other Bay Area restaurants.

Cons: Ridiculously bad service. Mediocre ambience. Located in a sketchy neighborhood. Don’t order the japchae.