[Foster City, CA] Soon’s Tofu and Korean BBQ

[FosterCity]

Speaking of Korean, I was feeling the itch and a bit north of Sunnyvale, so we went to a place called Soon’s in Foster City. I recommend it ( with reservations ).

The place was light and airy, high ceilings, mostly koreans from the neighborhood although a table that looked like a young women’s volleyball team. The menu is very broad, but there is no tabletop cooking. For two people, I always find that OK. But that have things like Manjoo and lots of pancake choices.

The food tasted just fresher than I’ve had at a Korean place in a long time. The little plates were few in number ( 5? ), but tasted fresh. The tofu soup, as well, lacked a bit in unctuous fatty broth, but had a strong kick and lots of “things” in it. I had Galbi, and it wasn’t the best. Although the taste was excellent - well spiced and cooked - the meat was poorly butchered, with inedible scraps as well as well formed rib-slices. GF wouldn’t eat more than one galbi - too fatty - but despite the poor butchering, I thought it was just about right - Galbi is supposed to be succulent that way.

The owner was friendly and introduced himself, and I mentioned the freshness of the taste. He said he had been in the location for 7 or 8 years, but had 6 chefs, and this one doesn’t take any short cuts and thus cooks more to order, and with far fresher taste. That philosophy came out very clearly in the food.

Now… with that kind of chef turnover, there might be another chef wandering along soon, and that taste I found might not be there when you go. That’s the one reservation.

Soon’s is a bit off the beaten path, but I’ll be back.

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I have been wonderful tofu soup in general. What constitutes a good one from the Korean perspective? Is the broth commonly fatty? I have found my local tofu soup at So Gong Dong to be satisfying, but that could be because of lack of exposure to the dish in general. It seems like they are going for the health angle with the soup not particularly fatty and organic tofu, etc.

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold