Dave drove the group to Dae Ga on Lemoine Avenue in Fort Lee, New Jersey where it was dark and, well, out of business. We didn’t have a Plan B even though the surrounding streets were peppered with Korean signs, so Dave called his brother-in-law who seemed to know all of the Korean bars and restaurants in the area. Without hesitation, he told us to keep driving to Palisades Park where it is now more Koreatown than Flushing, Queens and eat at So Moon Nan Jip.
The place was buzzing at 6:30pm on a Sunday night but we only waited for five minutes before we were seated in the back under a silver hood. Banchans were laid out and the hot coals were brought out for our barbecue. We were enveloped in smoked as we hungrily ate the kalbi with steaming bowls of white rice and discussed what our last meals would be if we were in death row. (Lamb chops for the Dr.; my dad’s Filipino sinigang for me) We also ordered the daegu muhri tang, a satisfying cod fish head stew. The bowl of naeng myun, or cold noodle soup, didn’t pass Dave’s test, but the grilled kalbi bones were a hit. A bottle of soju and OB beers were opened and shared.
I don’t go to New Jersey too much but now I have more reason to: Korean food across the George Washington bridge is so much better than the city’s.
So Moon Nan Jip is at 238 Broad Avenue in Palisades Park, New Jersey. Call them at 201/944.3998.