Open since 1982 and one of the first Korean restaurants in state of Florida, Korea House has continued to provide excellent traditional and authentic Korean cuisine to all of Central Florida. The kitchen is lead by head chef Kisoo Choi with 40 years of experience in both Korean and Korean-Chinese cuisine.
Korean cuisine is marked by the use of gojuchang (fermented Korean spicy chili pepper pastes), sesame oil, and the dominance of kimchi, the national spicy pickled cabbage. The cuisine is often spicy, flavorful, and fresh. Korea House – which recently underwent renovations with additions of new wood booths and future plans for a karaoke lounge – is spacious and inviting, with several tables equipped with Korean barbecue grills for cooking at the table.
For appetizers, start off with the gun-mandu, Korean pan fried dumplings made with pork, and the haemul-pajun, a Korean style seafood pancake with green onions and hot pepper. The haemul-pajun, made from a batter of eggs, wheat flour, rice flour, is absolutely the best I’ve had in Orlando, slightly crunchy, crispy, and stuffed with green onion and bits of calamari and imitation crab. Add a dab of spicy chili soy sauce to the slice of haemul-pajun and enjoy. Japchae, clear, Korean sweet potato noodles stir-fried in sesame oil with vegetables, mushrooms, and beef, is also a tasty starter, and fun to slurp.
Dolsot-bibimbap, a mixed rice dish served sizzling in a hot stone pot, is full of vegetables, sliced beef, and topped with a fried egg. To eat, just add some of the sweet pepper paste provided, to taste, and mix it all with your metal spoon while relishing the crunchy, slightly burnt rice on the bottom of the pot.
The Korean-Chinese food menu here is a relic of the historical influence of Korea’s Chinese neighbors on Korean cuisine. Dishes such as sweet and sour chicken, shrimp, pork, stir fried beef are all prepared with a slight touch of Korean style, full of spicy flavors and sesame oil. The jjambbong, a huge bowl of seafood spicy noodle soup, and the jajang-myun, black soybean paste noodles with beef and vegetables, are said to be particular favorites of the locals here at Korea House.
Other popular dishes here include the hot Korean stews like the Sundubu-Tzigae, a spicy, soft tofu stew with shrimp, and seafood, and the gom-tang oxtail soup that is prepared by simmering for 10 hours and served with clear noodles and beef. There is also an extensive list of fish prepared Korean style with a little bit of salt, grilled or fried, such as cod, monkfish, and mackerel fish to be eaten with white rice.
When you order large portions of the Korean barbecue menu, the dining party can opt to use the the grills built into the tables or have the kitchen prepare the dishes and bring them out on hot sizzling plates. The gal-bi, thick chunks of beef short ribs marinated in Korean barbecue sauce, are excellent here as are the bulgogi, available in pork, chicken, or beef varieties.
Korea House is a place known for quality Korean cuisine and its reputation for one of the best Korean restaurants in Orlando is well deserved.
Korean bbq booths at Korea House
Japchae – Clear, Korean potato noodles stir-fried with vegetables
Gun-mandu – Korean pan fried dumplings
Banchan – Korean side dishes including pickled turnips, tofu, kimchi, spinach, bean sprouts and more
Haemul Paejun – Seafood pancake
Spicy stir fried squid with vegetables
Sundubu-Tzigae – spicy, soft tofu stew with shrimp, and seafood
Galbi – Korean style barbecue beef short ribs grilled
Korea House Restaurant, 1155 State Road 434 West,
Longwood, FL 32750; (407) 767-5918