Markets in everything, northern Korea filtered through northern Virginia edition

by on March 14, 2011 at 7:32 am in Food and Drink | Permalink

Chung Jin Dong, 6499 Little River Turnpike, West Alexandria, 202-360-2746.

The sausage is some of the best in the area, most of all because of the vibrant fresh pepper; it also comes with stomach and liver.  Dip the pieces in the shrimp sauce.  The soup also has the knockout fresh pepper.  The menu is in Korean only and most of the staff do not speak much English.  The food is recognizably Korean, although not like any Korean food I have had.

They assure me it is real North Korean cuisine, although they assent to any question I ask them.  The owner and cook is from North Korea:

A little more than a decade ago, Ma was an undercover agent for North Korea’s Ministry of Public Security, conducting drug investigations. Her job was to bust smugglers—farmers, mostly—who were exporting opium to China.

It is not your go-to place for variety, but the quality is high and the originality is off the charts.  Anyone interested in ethnic food should visit this outlet.

For the pointer I thank Annie Lowrey.

Ken Rhodes March 14, 2011 at 8:56 am

Spanish is widely spoken in most of the U.S. Mexican restaurants proliferate. Nevertheless, many Mexican restaurants — from the cheap chains to the best quality restaurants — put descriptions in English on their menus.

Perhaps Ma would do well to enlist the aid of a friend fluent in English to write brief descriptions to put on her menu.

Rahul March 14, 2011 at 10:33 am

How a non-english speaking, north korean spy ends up selling sausages in virginia has seeds of an interesting human interest story in it!

Ken Rhodes March 14, 2011 at 11:38 am

Rahul, the link to the story is in Tyler’s short post. It’s a long read, but you’re correct.

athEIst March 14, 2011 at 11:39 am

North Korea restaurant–empty plate

CBBB March 15, 2011 at 2:33 am

The author claims beef is the staple meat of the south – which isn’t true. Pork is more widely eaten, it just happens to be the case that in AMERICAN Korean restaurants beef is more popular.
In fact it seems from this article that North Korean food isn’t much different then South Korea – except that this particular restaurant seems to serve dishes such as Soondae which are not common in American Korean restaurants, but very common in South Korea itself.

mbt footwear March 15, 2011 at 11:11 pm

Perhaps Ma would do well to enlist the aid of a friend fluent in English to write brief descriptions to put on her menu.

mbt March 18, 2011 at 5:49 am

also comes with stomach and liver. Dip the pieces in the shrimp sauce. The soup also has the knockout fresh pepper. The menu is in Korean only and most of the staff do not speak much English. The food is recognizably Korean, although not like any Korean food I have had.

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