One of the most authentic Korean BBQ restaurants in America, Kim’s BBQ Restaurant in the Philadelphia neighborhood of Onley boasts using 100% natural hardwood charcoal to BBQ their meats. Unlike most of their competition, Kim’s, and a couple other establishments in California are doctored into cooking their meat this way. While all others use gas for their BBQ, the authentic use of charcoal gives that needed smoky flavor to each dish.
Kim’s has been around for decades, and proves their experience with helpful service and delicious food. Once seated, you are greeted with a pot of hot tea and a wide selection of banchan (small side dishes) that fill up the table. Sake and scallion pancakes are ordered, and the banchan is devoured by me and my friends. We like to order the O-Sam Bulgogi (sliced beef and squid marinated in hot sauce) and the Maeun Kalbi (thinly sliced beef short ribs marinated in hot sauce).
The server presents a bed of hot coals for our table, and the fun begins. You can tend to the meat yourself, but the server is always very willing to assist in cooking. Garlic cloves and jalapeños are placed within the heap of sizzling meat and along the grills’ edges to soak up the juices. The scent of the meat grilling is scrumptious and even more delicious to taste. Getting too stuffed is easily done here, but if you can save some room, free ice cream is provided at the end of your meal.