Wednesday, July 31, 2013

HanJan

Back in April, a few of us FBMers went to HanJan to celebrate TT's birthday. Since I had such a wonderful experience the first time, I was happy to oblige.
We started off with some Atlantic salmon sashimi ($12) with a side of seasonal greens, red onions, and chojang (a spicy sweet chili sauce). The fish was very fresh and was a nice appetizer to start off the meal.

Next up, the Gwangju Market Fried Chicken ($12) which was boneless chicken thighs deep fried until crispy with a side of radish and pickled peppers. This was really good. The chicken had a light crispy crust but inside was juicy and tender. Great fried chicken.
The scallion pancake with local squid ($16) is a popular item but it just doesn't do it for me. I'm not saying it's bad because that's far from the truth. It's fried but light. The scallions are fresh and the squid perfectly cook. I'm just not that into it.
Now the pork fat ddukbokki ($12) is something that I am into. Tender, chewy rice cakes in a sweet spicy sauce with the unctuousness of pork fat and slender pieces of fish cake strewn throughout. A soft boiled egg served on the side just adds to the richness.
The fresh killed chicken wings ($12) is also very good. The soy sake marinade is delightfully sweet and salty. The meat is tender and juicy. The wings are nicely sized. Just a very well executed dish.
The kimchi duo ($5) is a great side dish to offset so much of the richer foods. Although each plate came with some sort of vegetable garnish, this was a welcomed change of pace.
And now onto the skewers.  Here is the spicy pork belly ($10) grilled and charred until the fat just melts slightly leaving the meat incredibly tender, flavorful, and juicy. All skewers come with lettuce, ssam jang sauce (a sweet spicy sauce with pungency from onions and garlic), and scallions to offset the richness of the proteins.
The BBQ galbi skewers ($10) were equally good. Grilled and charred slightly with tender, juicy meat flavored in it's own fat along with a simple sweet salty marinade.
And now for the more daring skewers. This is the chicken heart ($6) and it was delicious. Normally I dislike chicken heart as it can be very minerally. I prefer the gizzard actually. But these were really good. Grilled lightly and left pretty medium rare to rare. Juicy and no minerally flavor at all. Just meaty.
And of course we had to get the fried chicken skin skewer ($6) as well. Super crispy chicken skin. It needs no other explanation.
As our main courses (really there is no difference; the menu is designed to share), we had the spicy squid stir fry with somyum noodles ($15). The squid was tender and cooked in a delicious spicy sauce. Not overly spicy but an enjoyable level. The noodles were tender but chewy. I could fill a bowl with this dish and eat it happily by myself.
The last dish (sorry for the blurry picture) was the braised pig trotter with fermented shrimp sauce ($20). This was excellent as well. Tender meat from the long braise, then sliced thinly to share. The shrimp sauce was extremely salty so a little bit went a long way.
HanJan has not disappointed me. The food is always excellent. The service is always attentive and friendly, and the space is modern yet comfortable. Thank you again, Chef Hooni Kim.

HanJan
36 W 26th Street
New York, NY 10010
(212) 206-7226
hanjan26.com

5 comments:

  1. great meal. Thanks FBM!

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  2. Loved this place! I didn't realize you hadn't posted this visit already and thought you had gone back again.

    I'd go back too. :P

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, as usual, I'm behind on posts.

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  3. Looks like an amazing meal! So sad I missed it!

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