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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Light Town House Korean BBQ - Garden Grove (Korean Business District) (Closed)

One of my older cousins on my mom's side was in town, so my siblings and I headed down to Orange County to take him out for the day. What to do with a 50something-year-old cousin? Not much. :P

Since we were in the area, we decided to go to our favorite Korean barbecue restaurant - Seol Ak San - for the kimchee fried rice cooked on a rock slab. Unfortunately, it was closed on a Sunday afternoon. :( So we went to my second favorite choice for Korean barbecue in Orange County - Light Town House Korean BBQ in Garden Grove.

See? Nice interior huh?

The restaurant is located on Garden Grove Boulevard in the heart of the Korean Business District of Garden Grove. While the area had been steadily growing for a few decades, the L.A. Riots in 1992 spurred many merchants to relocate here. There are about 1,000 businesses mainly on this stretch between Brookhurst Street and Beach Boulevard.

If you're unfamiliar with Korean barbecue, or wary of going to places where the staff doesn't speak English, then Light Town House is a good introduction. The exterior is a little run down, but the interior is spacious and clean. The staff speaks English and are quite attentive, refilling panchan and flipping and cutting your meats. The portions of meat and panchan have always been generous and of good quality.

The restaurant used to have charcoal grills but have since removed them. :( Nonetheless, the large smoke vents remain and keep you from smelling like barbecue afterward.

Here's a selection of panchan ranging from kimchee to tofu and raw crab kimchee.

The $24.99 order of kalbi (short ribs) goes on the grill first.

There's also daikon slices and rice noodle sheets to wrap around the meats.

Close-ups of pretty panchan.

The bulgogi was in large generous slices. It seemed like the $20.99 order was a neverending plate of bulgogi because we kept eating and eating and there always seemed to be more.

I miss the charcoal grills that gave the meats a nice smokiness, but quality of meats and panchan and service is just as good as ever.

There's also weekday lunch specials and a variety of Korean specialty stews and seafood if you want to be adventurous.

April 26, 2015 update: This restaurant is now closed.

Other Korean barbecue restaurants:
Chung Kiwa Korean BBQ Restaurant - Los Angeles (Koreatown)
Feedable BBQ Buffet - Rowland Heights
Gui Il Bun Ji BBQ Restaurant - Los Angeles (Koreatown)
Hae Jang Chon Korean BBQ Restaurant - Los Angeles (Koreatown)  
Hwa Ro Korean BBQ and Tofu -San Gabriel
Hwang Hae Do Korean BBQ - Artesia
Manna Korean BBQ - Los Angeles (Koreatown)
Ong Ga Nae Korean BBQ - Rowland Heights
San Ya Restaurant Korean BBQ & Noodle - Los Angeles (Koreatown)
Seol Ak San - Stanton
Soot Bul Gui Rim 2 Korean BBQ - Los Angeles (Koreatown)
Tahoe Galbi Restaurant - Los Angeles (Koreatown)

Light Town House Korean BBQ
8902 Garden Grove Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92844


  1. Go Korean food! And go you!

    Wow, I am just full of witty and wise things to say today.

  2. Thanks for the intro! Having never been to a Korean bbq, can you tell me, do you choose your own panchan or is there a standard set?

  3. Anon,
    Umm, yay?

    Each restaurant usually rotates a variety of panchan. There's always napa cabbage kimchee. Beyond that it can vary from Korean potato salad, soy bean sprouts, water kimchee, raw crab kimchee, onion pancakes, corvina fish, tofu, red beans, etc. They bring it out automatically and the amount and variety sometimes depends on how much food you order. I usually check to see that the lettuce isn't wilted, and that the panchan tastes fresh. Some places offer daikon slices and rice noodle sheets to wrap around the meat, but not every place does. If you like anything in particular, you can ask for a refill. Some items such as the corvina fish usually aren't refillable, but most are. You should give Korean BBQ a try!

  4. Yum. Sounds like a great meal! You have so much choice for great food over there!

  5. W&S,
    I know, I really love SoCal for the variety of food.

  6. Oh god... I'm so hungry now...
    I'll eat Korean food in a month and a half... In Paris.

  7. Montchan,
    I bet you're counting down every day. :) Don't forget I suggested Angelina's for hot chocolate.

  8. I love Light Town House; their food is amazing. However, the servers have a serious attitude problem that leaves you with a bad taste in your mouth.

  9. Cin,
    Really? I'm sorry to hear that. I've never had a problem with service at Light Town House.

  10. LIGHT TOWN HOUSE is the best Korean BBQ restaurant in Southern California. The bulgogi is AMAZING. By the way, the servers are really cool and very nice!

  11. Jon,
    Everyone has a favorite. The servers here are very nice. Or they have been every time I've eaten here anyway.


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