Korean Food News
Meaty new Korean restaurant in Dallas' Koreatown fires up hotpots and fun
There's a fun Korean restaurant in Dallas' Koreatown, now open in the former Nuri Grill space at 2254 Royal Ln. #100. Called Joa, with a subhead "Korean BBQ," it's from K Roy Restaurant Group, who also owned Nuri Grill, and represents their effort to forge a more approachable, fun, bright, more casual way to spotlight authentic traditional Korean food.
Joa means "I like it" in Korean.
Wan Kim of Restaurant K Roy Restaurant Group, who is also CEO of Smoothie King, says in a release that their goal is also to make diners feel like they've taken a trip to Korea.
"Joa will offer DFW locals authentic traditional Korean food, made by the same Michelin chefs from Korea and the same team that brought DFW Nuri Grill and is planning to bring Nuri Steakhouse to Uptown next year," he says.
The menu centers on meats including beef, pork, shrimp, and lamb, as well as hot pots, also known as hotpots no space between hot and pots, with soups, stews, fried rice, cold noodles, hot noodles, and sides.
Appetizers include Fried Galbi (traditional pan-fried marinated Galbi with Korean shredded perilla leaves wraps), Beef Tukbokki (rice cake sauteed in spicy red chili, beef, and pepper sauce); Oysters from Canada with house vinaigrette; and Yuk Hoe - raw sesame marinated beef tartare seasoned with garlic and soy.
Meat options require a bulleted list:
- Flower Galbisal - prime boneless short rib
- Ribeye - Black Angus ribeye
- Marinated Galbi - Black Angus smoked beef short rib
- Salted Neuggansal - Black Angus, salt, garlic and sesame oil seasoned rib finger
- Porterhouse for two
- Duroc Pork Belly
- Hangjeongsal - pork jowl
- Rack of Lamb
Meat selections are served with kimchi radish, napa cabbage & green onion, potato salad, green onion salad, pickled vegetables, beef & radish soup, chilled cucumber soup, and steamed rice.
Other dishes, also meaty, include:
- Mountain Bulgogi Hot Pot for two, spicy or mild, with bulgogi beef, glass noodles, and mushroom in beef broth
- Beef Doenjang Jiggae featuring soybean paste, tofu, beef, squash, mushroom, and onion
- Pork Gochujang Jiggae - vegetable and pork in red chili paste stew
- Kimchi Fried Rice - radish kimchi and beef fried rice
- Mini Bibim Naengmyun - chilled buckwheat noodles in spicy sauce
- Steak Noodles - stir fried noodles, beef and black bean paste
Beverages include Korean Soju, sake, bottled beer including popular Asian beers, cocktails, and an impressive wine and Japanese whiskey collection. Standout cocktails include Ultimate Pink Martini with vodka, cranberry juice, peach schnapps, and lime; Whiskey Sour Crush with whiskey, sweet & sour, and Coke; and a Yuzu Mojito with Yuzuri liqueur, lime, mint, club soda, and Sprite.
Though their goal is to create a playful, casual atmosphere, it's still a full-service dining experience and still features two Michelin chefs.
Those include chef Minji Kim, who founded Min's Kitchen, a renowned restaurant in Seoul, Korea which she owned from 2007 until 2020, when she and her husband and fellow chef Ben Lee moved to Dallas to work on Nuri Grill. Lee was executive chef at Min’s Kitchen and created recipes that influenced modern Korean fusion cuisine. There are currently four locations of Min's Kitchen, run by Kim’s sister.
Wan Kim is a native of Korea who opened the first Smoothie King franchise in Korea. He eventually acquired Smoothie King, and made Dallas its corporate headquarters in 2018.