Coming soon to Baldwin Village: yakitori and other Asian fusion-y stuff
By Jon Sufrin
Baldwin Village received a much-needed culinary injection earlier this year with the opening of Kinton Ramen, and now another Asian concept aims to continue the upward trend. Veteran restaurateur Sang Kim is set to open two new restaurants — to be known as Yakitori Bar and Seoul Food — which will share a space at 1 Baldwin Street.
Kim is currently in the menu-development stage, but he knows this much: Yakitori Bar will be more of a sit-down concept and will highlight, as expected, yakitori (skewered, grilled chicken), cooked on a charcoal grill with a combination of regular charcoal and Japanese white charcoal.
Having worked in the restaurant industry for 27 years (he consulted at Ki and was a previous owner of Blowfish, among other restaurants), Kim knows a lot of chefs, and he’s planning to use that to his advantage. He would like to see Yakitori Bar host competitions, wherein well-known chefs such as Francisco Alejandri or Matt Basile will submit their takes on yakitori. The best-selling yakitori over a period of three months will remain on the menu for an additional three months, at which point a new competition will begin with new chefs.
Seoul Food, meanwhile, will be more of a Korean grab-and-go concept with bibimbap, bulgogi burgers, galbi steak sandwiches, kimchi French fries and the like.
Kim says the restaurants will open by Dec. 1., and he’s using a blog to document the trials and tribulations of getting up and running.