If you're thinking about your next Korean meal, here are the freshest places around San Jose serving kimchi, bulgogi and other standby dishes.
2855 Stevens Creek Blvd.
Photo: eric d./Yelp
Koja Kitchen is a fusion spot melding Japanese and Korean fare located in Westfield Valley Fair mall, with other locations throughout the Bay Area.
The restaurant serves Korean-style sandwiches on fried garlic rice buns. Choose from filling options like short ribs, beef, braised pork or chicken and toppings, such as katsu aioli, pineapple, onions, cilantro and masago.
Yelp users are still warming up to Koja Kitchen, which currently holds 3.5 stars out of 20 reviews on the site.
"This is the most unique food at the mall. If you want to try delicious juicy Korean-style beef go to KoJa Kitchen and get the short-rib burger, otherwise know as The Original," Yelper Maria O. said. "The unique part is that the buns are made of crispy garlic rice. Not your typical bread. They also have a good selection of beer. Perfection."
Sarah C. noted, "The service was quick and the ladies were very nice. I got the chicken koja and it was packed with chicken inside, as well as other ingredients. It was very savory and enjoyable."
Koja Kitchen is open from 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m. on weekdays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. on Saturday, and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. on Sunday.
1780 Story Rd., East San Jose
Photo: shirley n./Yelp
Nabi Q offers barbecue and more, like fried chicken breast pieces coated with a thick, sweet basil sauce and served with rice and vegetables; garlic shrimp served with rice and vegetables; and spicy pork marinated in ginger sauce and grilled.
Nabi Q's current Yelp rating of 4.5 stars out of 76 reviews indicates positive attention.
"Great Korean barbecue spot," Yelper Rebecca T. said. "The owner is so friendly and she asks if you'd like to try their chicken as soon as you walk in. This is the kind of barbecue that you'd typically find at a mall where it's quick, and some of the items are already prepared. It's not the kind you cook yourself. Their prices are very reasonable and their portions are pretty big."
Michelle T. added, "This place is so good that my picky Vietnamese parents have gone here to buy food for dinner. Not only am I a regular, my brother became a regular after my first visit. Now my parents are regulars. The food, service, and staff are excellent."
Nabi Q is open from 10:30 a.m.-10 p.m. on Monday-Saturday and 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. on Sunday.
Gen Korean BBQ House
1554 Saratoga Ave.
Photo: gen korean bbq house/Yelp
Gen Korean BBQ House is a Korean and Asian fusion chain with a varied menu that includes marinated steak with pineapple slices; marinated calamari with house special cajun sauce; fried and marinated chicken with sweet and spicy sauce; spicy soft tofu stew; fried dumplings; marinated pork loin and more.
Yelp users are generally positive about Gen Korean BBQ House, which currently holds four stars out of 198 reviews on the site.
Yelper Michelle P., one of the first users to visit Gen Korean BBQ House on April 30, wrote, "the meat is good. Definitely explore more than just the beef. I loved the garlic chicken, the spicy squid, and the red-wine pork belly more than any of the beef dishes."
Yelper Nin J. added, "Our server was on it. The food was good, but the service here is what makes it. Friendly, fast and fun. Thanks."
Gen Korean BBQ House is open from 10 a.m.-11 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-midnight on Friday, 9 a.m.-midnight on Saturday, and 9 a.m.-11 p.m. on Sunday.