DTLA: Getting Soupy with Tang
The Korean spot Tang just opened up in Little Tokyo. Funny enough, it’s just above Tangerine on the third level of Weller Court. Tang however does not refer to the powdered drink, a zippy tangy feeling or a short form of tangerine. In Korean, it means soup. I fully expected it to be just soup but Tang serves all manner of Korean food from lunch time specials of set meals to Korean pancakes. Also it’s all sorts of soup. Not animal bone soup like I was envisioning. Plus, you get all the side dishes (banchan) you can shake your chopsticks at. They’re more than happy to refill the kimchi or give you another bowl of rice (because you have to finish up all that broth!).
On my first visit, I had the seafood tofu soup aka soon dobu tang. I asked for it to be medium-spicy but it wasn’t really spicy. The broth was a little thin for my taste. I wish a raw egg was offered to add to the soup. Overall, it was a great deal for lunch in Downtown Los Angeles where there aren’t many Korean food options and my tofu soup place just closed up shop.
I then tried the bibimbap next and added spicy pork. I liked that the egg was scrambled before frying but wouldn’t have mided a fried egg with a beautiful yolk peeking from the bowl. Or even a raw egg to mix in. However, the rice was perhaps a bit too wet and never got crispy.
This week I went for the bean paste soup with seafood and beef. I love bean paste (doenjang) and use it liberally whenever I’m out to KBBQ. I probably use it even more than gochujang (Korean spicy red pepper sauce). With doenjang as the base, this soup takes on a bit of a funky flavor. I thought it was great there was a ton of tofu but only actually about 2 shrimp and 3 clams. The bits of beef were very tender.
I’m thinking about trying the Korean raw seafood rice bowl next (hwe dup bap) next time.
Tang123 Astronaut Ellison S Onizuka St., Los Angeles, CA 90012 — (213) 346-9709 © The Minty 2014