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227 High Holborn
Long before Korean food became a “funky” fixture of the London dining scene, Asadal was already spreading the gospel of kimchi – though you might easily walk right past its unassuming entrance hidden next to Holborn station. "Descend the steps and you could almost be in Seoul", notes one reader. The key to genuine Korean cooking is balance, and the extensive menu in this softly lit, wood-panelled basement dining room is “still delivering”, with bags of choice from savoury pa jeon (seafood pancakes) to sweet-and-sour tang su yook beef or spicy pork and beancurd hotpot. We’re also partial to hands-on favourites, including the sizzling bibimbap (layers of steak, vegetables and rice that you mix together in a stone pot) and the deftly marinated pork belly cooked barbecue-style on the hotplate at your table. Good-value lunch box deals are a great way to explore what's on offer. It may not be “cutting edge”, but Asadal’s food has “authenticity” in spades, concludes one convert.
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Best Korean Restaurants in London
Best Private Rooms: <10
SquareMeal 2 Stars
227 High Holborn
Holborn Tube Station 62m
Chancery Lane Tube Station 449m
The Cochrane Theatre 189m
Bloomsbury Square Gardens 269m
Mon-Sat 12N-3pm Mon-Sun 6-11pm (Sun -10.30pm)
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 3
Appearances can be deceptive, so don’t be put off by the slightly incongruous location (pretty much next door to Holborn underground station) or grubby frontage. Descend the steps and you could almost be in Seoul. I first ate at Asadal over ten years ago and prior to a recent evening visit, not for some five or so. Despite the emergence of several newer and funkier Korean up-starts (such as Little Venice’s Gogi or the expanding Kimchee min-chain), Asadal continues to deliver. The restaurant itself is a large basement space, but tables are well-spaced and the mellow wood panelling lends a calm feel to the place. The menus themselves look as if they have perhaps seen better days and could perhaps do with a revamp, but what you come here for is the food. Based on the number of Koreans dining, many would clearly seem to agree. We began with a selection of kimchee (pickled vegetables – predominantly cabbage – with spice), followed this with two starters and concluded with two mains. There was little to fault any of our dishes. They arrived speedily, were presented well and delivered in terms of taste. A wide range is available here and so while I enjoyed a bibimbap (a stone bowl with beef slices, rice, vegetables and a raw egg), my comrade partook in some beef freshly fried in front of him. Cutting-edge this may not necessarily be, but what Asadal loses in this respect, it certainly gains in terms of authenticity. At c£30/head including beer and service, it is also a reasonably priced dining experience to enjoy.
Food + drink: 5
asadal is one of the most stylist restaurant and one of the best restaurant in london with best services u will ever find and with the best and very delicious dishes that will make you addicted to the asadal…
Food + drink: 4
I work in Lincoln's Inn Fields and often bemoan the lack of restaurants for lunch nearby. It's all chains like Strada and Cafe Rouge. Asadal is a real find for lunch or dinner and is excellent value.
The food is really tasty (try the Kan Poong Gi Bab; marinated fried crispy chicken. Not fatty or covered in thick nasty batter, just really light and crispy. Amazing) and the lunch deal includes a bowl of miso soup and a slice of melon for dessert. Excellent value, particularly when most of the lunch dishes cost about £8. The Korean root tea is also really good – similar to ginger tea but with a slight hint of spice.
The Korean barbecue menu for dinner is also excellent value and great dining theatre; the tables have a gas barbecue recessed in the table and after you've gorged on 3 rounds of starters a chef comes to your table with marinated meat/fish/similar, as well as lots of vegetables, sauces, rice etc and cooks it in front of you. Great fun and the smell of barbecuing food is really appetising.
Service is prompt and discrete.
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