LOS ANGELES - Where can you find the best bibimbap, bulgogi, or japchae?
Turns out, not so far if you live in downtown Los Angeles!
Yelp recently ranked the top Korean restaurants in the United States and Canada, and lo and behold - right here in Los Angeles - BROKEN MOUTH | Lee's Homestyle took the top honor in all of California.
North America is home to one of the largest Korean populations outside Korea, with the United States housing a population of over 1.8 million people of Korean descent, according to Yelp.
The list put out by Yelp identified businesses in the Korean category on Yelp, then ranked those spots using a number of factors including the total volume and ratings of reviews. All businesses were marked open on Yelp as of April 25, 2022 and when available all businesses on the list have a passing health score as of that same date.
According to its website, BROKEN MOUTH is "Korean by blood, Hawaiian at heart" and is the brainchild of Tim Lee, hoping to share his love for food and family. It first opened its doors in downtown LA in 2017.
BROKEN MOUTH's "simple menu" ranges from traditional Korean fare with also Hawaiian-inspired menu items like a shrimp plate with macaroni salad and purple rice as well as a highly-talked about spam musubi.
The menu serves brunch, plate lunches, a la carte offerings like a spicy chicken sandwich, and small bites like pickled carrots and braised potato.
"I am now also a huge fan of the Egg-Battered Ribeye and Cucumber Kimchi!" one Yelper said.
"I ordered the shrimp plate (kabuki-style garlic butter shrimp) and oh my god. IT WAS SO GOOD. The owner told us to try eating it with the shell on first and when I did, I didn't expect to enjoy it so much as I expected it to be," another Yelper raved.
"I haven't had food like this anywhere else. The flavors pack a hefty punch without overwhelming you, and the marriage between the furikake purple rice, homemade potato-mac salad, and your delicious choice of protein is a match made in heaven," another said.
"My God, their food is truly a form of art. Their shrimp is so tasty and flavorful, you should eat it with the shell on," another person added.
Yelpers were also quick to give a shoutout to Tim and his hospitality making it a worthwhile experience.
"Tim exudes Hawaiian hospitality, with his warm and approachable greeting, and his breezy friendly attitude, as he walked us through the menu. Oh, I'm supposed to be rating the food right?" one Yelper raved.
"The meal was already incredible but what made our experience special was how hospitable and hardworking the owner was. He worked in both the front and back, yet still made time to chat with us and even gave drinks on the house!" another said.
Did your favorite Korean spot make the list?
You can see Yelp's list ranking the best Korean restaurant in every state by clicking or tapping here.