Tteokgalbi in the Wall Street Journal

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Last week, my first ever piece for theWall Street Journal was published. It covers Chef Woo-joong Kwon and his restaurant East Village, which strives successfully to do Korean fine dining. We particularly talk about his restaurant’s signature dish, an upgrade of tteokgalbi, which is usually like a flaccid hamburger steak. I ate this after taking the photos, and it is definitely different. The meat has the bouncy texture of ribs but still is easy to chew. This is because the staff hand trims the prime parts in between the ribs and methodically dices them by hand. Because it’s so labor intensive they can only sell five dishes a night. That also explains the price, and you have to order it ahead of time.

On a personal level, this is my second time writing for a major publication based in America, the first being Plate Magazine–and the editing process is so super professional. I love it! A simple article like that was methodically combed through and rewritten for a month. Click below for the article.

Seoul Food Refined – The Wall Street Journal


Author: ZenKimchi

Joe McPherson founded ZenKimchi in 2004. He has been featured and sourced in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, CNN, KBS, MBC, SBS, Le Figaro, Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia, Harper’s Bazaar Korea, The Chosun Weekly, and other Korean and international media. He has consulted for "Parts Unknown with Anthony Bourdain," The Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern,” Lonely Planet, National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, the PBS documentary series “Kimchi Chronicles,” and other projects in the UK, Canadan, and Australia featuring celebrity chefs such as Gizzi Erskine and Gary Mehigan. Mr. McPherson has written for multiple Korean and international publications, including SEOUL Magazine, JoongAng Daily, The Korea Herald, Newsweek Korea and wrote the feature article for U.S. National publication Plate magazine’s all-Korean food issue. He has acted as dining editor for 10 Magazine and was on the judging panel for Korea for the Miele Guide. He spoke at TEDx Seoul on Korean food globalization, at TED Worldwide Talent Search on the rise of Korean cuisine, and in New York City on Korean Buddhist temple cuisine. The company ZenKimchi International organizes food tours for tourists and corporations and acts as a media liaison for foreign and Korean media and local restaurants and producers.

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