Throw a DIY Dol (Doljanchi) Birthday Party at Home

throwing a dol party in a nyc apartment

It’s been awhile since I posted something on this website. The aim of Gab and Gobble is to share dining and travel ideas with others, and with the recent outbreak of COVID-19, it’s obviously something that has to be put on hold. So I’m going to focus on things like cooking and take-out, since that is now the state of the world. This post is focused on the diy first birthday Korean dol party that I threw for my daughter in my NYC apartment. Throwing a dol party in NYC is a challenge–restaurants are expensive, and if you do it yourself, space is scarce. It’s also a challenge to find traditional vendors that source the Korean decorations and food that you need. But it is possible!

Read More

Jua Restaurant Review in Flatiron

Finally, a Korean restaurant breaks into my top 10 restaurants list. I had a very impressive meal at Jua, the new fine dining Korean restaurant run by Chef Hoyoung Kim, who used to be the executive chef at Jungsik. The nine course Jua tasting menu consisted of Korean dishes that I grew up eating, only fancier and better. The cooking was on par with what we expect from a highly esteemed Western restaurant. It makes me proud of how far Korean food has come in extending its reach far beyond just the humble bbq restaurant (which is still awesome) and joining the ranks of elite institutions, a status that tends to be reserved for the fancy European place or the pricey sushi omakase.

Read More

3 Times Chinese Restaurant Review

I discovered 3 Times, a fast-casual Chinese restaurant, on the Seated reservation app. If you book a table through the app, you can earn rewards like 20% Amazon cash back, which is why I’ve had many meals at The Woo in Soho. You obviously won’t get a table at a top tier restaurant like Don Angie or Lilia, but there are plenty of perfectly fine neighborhood restaurants to choose from. The Chinese food at 3 Times is one of the highlights.

Read More

Review of Misi in Williamsburg

As a restaurant, Misi, Missy Robbins’ other, newer Italian restaurant in Brooklyn, has a lot to live up to. That’s what happens when The New York Times gives you three out of four stars, and when the only reservations available for any weekend in the foreseeable future are none at all. People will walk in here and be extra hard on you because it was extra hard on them to even make it here. I tried hard not to view my dining experience through that lens, even though it took me nearly a year and a half to finally settle on a 5pm seating at the kitchen counter, because I knew that was as good as it would get. And that annoying 15 minute walk from the Marcy St subway didn’t make that any easier.

Read More

Hip Korean American food at Nowon in East Village

Nowon, the new Korean restaurant in the East Village, specializes in a genre of food I like to call “Asian American” fusion food. It’s been popularized by the likes of Roy Choi of Kogi and Pot in LA, as well as Dale Talde, Chef Jae Lee’s old boss at Rice & Gold. Lately the trend in Asian food seems to be either elevating a cuisine (fine dining Korean at Atomix or Jungsik as an example), or to be super authentic and introduce a regional cuisine unfamiliar to American audiences (mixian noodles, Taiwanese noodle soup, etc). Asian American fusion food, though, truly mashes up the two different cuisines together. Normally the foundation of the dish is a familiar comfort food, like a hamburger, served with Asian embellishments like kimchi or gochujang. And of course it can go the other way around, like spicy korean tteokbokki rice cakes sprinkled with parmesan cheese.

Read More